Healing by trance state (or an altered state of awareness) is among the oldest phenomena known to man and is found, in one form or another, in virtually every culture throughout the world. It could also be legitimately described as the original psychological therapy and somewhat more contentiously, as the basis for many of the more recent styles of psychological intervention.
Sounds Positive uses Cognitive Hypnotherapy, a combined therapy technique that builds on the basic understanding of the value of the trance state, and draws in the latest understanding of how our brains work. There is more direct information about Cognitive Hypnotherapy on this site’s dedicated page, and also at the website of the Quest Institute, the home of Cognitive Hypnotherapy.
Traditional hypnotherapy – a long history
Although altered trance states have been known about for thousands of years, the term hypnosis (from the Greek ‘hypnos’, meaning ‘sleep’) was only coined by Dr James Braid, a Scottish physician in about 1840.
What Braid did not then know is that a trance state is very similar to that we experience every night in REM (rapid eye movement) sleep – a part of our natural sleeping programme through the night. And dreaming, which takes place during REM sleep, is the deepest state of trance we experience.
Hypnosis is a natural state of mind, enhanced by (although not exclusively) mental and physical relaxation, in which our unconscious is able to communicate with our conscious mind. It is widely accepted that this is the ideal learning state in which we may access our inner potential.
Why use it
Therapy under a hypnotic trance is one way to access the individual’s unconscious mind. Hypnotherapy is distinct from many other psychological therapies in that it addresses the client’s unconscious mind. A hypnotherapist often works with the client in a relaxed state, frequently enlists the power of the client’s own imagination and may utilise a wide range of techniques from story telling, metaphor or symbolism to the use of suggestions for beneficial change.
Unlike many other psychological therapies, hypnotherapy is generally considered to be a brief approach in which positive change becomes apparent within a few sessions.
Hypnotherapy can be used to beneficial effect on a wide range of health issues, including: stress, anxiety, panic, phobias, unwanted habits and addictions (e.g. smoking addiction, overeating, alcoholism), disrupted sleep patterns, lack of confidence and low self-esteem, fear of examinations and public speaking, poor exam technique, allergies and skin disorders, migraine and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). In addition, hypnotherapy has been used for pain management.
Who can be hypnotised?
The answer to this question is undoubtedly ‘virtually everyone’. In fact, the act of moving one’s mind into a trance state is exclusively controlled by the individual; it may be helped by an outside influence, but no therapist can force someone into a trance.
Know your therapies
Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP)
New Code NLP
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT)
Automatic Unconscious Learning (AUL)
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