- Suggestion hypnotherapy
- Ericksonian hypnotherapy
- ‘Parts’ or ‘ego state’ therapy
Hypnotherapists and hypnoanalysts use a variety of techniques depending on the individual case and issues. These range from ‘suggestion’ therapy to ‘parts’ (or ‘ego state’) therapy as well as in-depth hypnoanalysis. Hypnoanalysis is really the supreme therapy, in that it can permanently resolve deep-seated psychological problems, whereas most other therapies offer a coping strategy or periodic relief.
This is the best known and most widely used form of hypnotherapy, making use of the client’s increased responsiveness to beneficial suggestions in order to change behaviour. It is effective for problems such as examination fears, performance anxiety (music, sport, speaking in public), driving test nerves, confidence-boosting, nail biting etc., and often only requires only one or two sessions. It is a highly effective method to stop smoking and requires only one session! Suggestion hypnotherapy is less effective, however, for deep-seated psychological problems.
This is a form of ‘suggestion’ hypnotherapy but it uses stories, metaphors and specific language patterns to communicate with the subconscious mind and bring about change. Milton Erickson was a genius and one of the first to employ therapy individually adapted to each client.
Analytical therapy under hypnosis is an advanced technique and probably the most effective therapeutic treatment available today for deep-rooted psychological problems. This may involve regression therapy and/or ‘parts’ therapy. Hypnosis is used to aid recall and the therapist works with the client to uncover and resolve the underlying cause of such problems as fears and phobias, panic attacks, IBS, emotional, psycho-sexual or relationship difficulties, low self-esteem, insomnia and numerous other issues where deep-seated psychological factors may be involved. Where many therapies offer coping strategies or periodic relief, hypnoanalysis can, in a short time, permanently resolve these kinds of problems. By enabling past events to be re-examined at a conscious level and the emotion released, patterns of behaviour which are no longer appropriate (e.g. the phobic response) will instantly cease.
‘Parts’ or ‘ego state’ therapy:
‘Parts’ therapy is a profound and rapid technique for facilitating change that came out of the work of Paul Federn. It is based on the concept that our personality is composed of a number of parts or aspects. These aspects of our subconscious mind have their respective jobs and drivers. Conflict occurs when we have two parts of the subconscious mind pulling in different directions. For example, in the case of an overweight person, there is often one part of the subconscious that wants to lose weight and another that gets pleasure from snacking or eating the wrong foods. By accessing the subconscious, we can discover the real reason why each is doing what it is doing and bring the parts to an agreement.
With this modality we can access the subconscious mind, locate the parts that are harbouring pain, suffering, trauma, anger or frustration and facilitate expression, release, comfort and empowerment. This technique is extremely effective for resolving internal conflicts.
The client can easily learn self-hypnosis (or auto-suggestion) and use it either on a regular basis (to relieve stress, for example) or on a needs basis, e.g. to aid public-speaking, sports, stage or business performance, for anaesthesia before dental or surgical treatment, for post-operative recovery or for exam nerves. It can also be used to relieve physical pain, to boost the immune system and bring about increased well-being.
Self-hypnosis is an extremely useful tool as it can enhance the effectiveness of therapy (when practised in conjunction with formal therapy) and also give the client an autonomous therapeutic tool once the therapy is over. It can either be done with the aid or a recording or using ‘self talk’.
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