Monthly Archives: March 2011

Test Anxiety Helped by Hypnosis

We’ve all felt stress or anxiety when we’ve had to take a test. Maybe it was that spelling test in third grade, the SAT’s in high school or college finals, test anxiety is not uncommon and we’ve all felt it at some point in our lives. Even the class brain who is always calm, and maybe even smug, when test time rolls around has felt stress at test taking time. How we deal with test taking stress is what can bring success or sabotage our best efforts and thorough preparation for the test. Hypnosis has been found to aid in relieving test taking anxiety.

Test taking anxiety can be the result of one or many different things from fear of failure, thinking you haven’t studied enough, or exaggerating the importance of the test. Not to say that some tests are not extremely important, but not all of them are of the same importance.

A nurse had to take a test to re-certify for her position at a hospital that she’d held for 20 years. This was an important test and due to her test taking anxiety she failed to pass it the first time she took it. She knew that test taking anxiety had been the cause, so before taking the test again she sought the help of a hypnotherapist. Together the nurse and hypnotherapist found that her test taking anxiety was caused from her fear of losing her job and thus letting down her family.
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The Cat In The Hat – Hypnosis for Children

In the first class I attended at The Northwest Hypnosis Intitute, Bruce Terrill, our instructor, went around the room and asked each student a series of casual questions, one of which was if they had an idea what kind of hypnosis they might want to specialize in if they successfully completed the course. The majority of students, including myself, did not have a clear-cut answer. Two professionals in health care mentioned that they wanted to use their hypnotherapy training to advance their careers. One fellow wants to be a stage-hypnotist and one woman wants to use it for birthing – as part of natural childbirth. This proved interesting and the conversation quickly moved on to how hypnosis is working for children with challenges.

In the medical field, textbooks state that children do not fully develop cognitive processes until about 11 or 12. They have fewer imprints and they don’t worry so much about the facts on how the world should be. They don’t critically evaluate things as readily. And why should they? They’re kids. They daydream, often their attention spans are very short, and they are easily distracted. And all these tendencies make them excellent candidates for hypnosis. When a child listens to a fairy tale, they tend to get completely absorbed, forgetting about the outside world. They’re in a trance, and when the story is finished, they take from the story impressions that become operative in their everyday life. Because of these factors and more, it is commonly accepted in the world of hypnotherapy that children are much more responsive to hypnosis than adults. Read more »

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Hypnosis for Phobias

To address phobias and the potential benefits hypnosis might have in treating them, one must first look at what exactly a phobia is. A phobia is a persistent and very likely abnormal as well as irrational fear of a very specific thing or situation. The fear, or phobia, can be and is usually so great or compelling that an individual will go to great lengths to avoid the object or situation that they are afraid of, despite any and all reassurances. These individuals usually even have an understanding on a conscious level that their phobia is not truly dangerous or any real threat.

You can Google phobia and find lists that literally rank into the hundreds of various and sundry different phobias that people struggle with. Having said this, many people have phobias that they deal with on a daily basis. Some are relatively minor while others might be quite debilitating and in fact rule a person’s life. Individuals who suffer from the more extreme phobias will actually choreograph their entire life around avoidance of their phobia. This is where hypnosis and/or hypnotherapy can assist a person in gaining control over their life. Read more »

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Anchoring Wellbeing with Hypnosis & NLP

Ever feel nervous before giving that big presentation and wish you could somehow channel the confidence you feel when you’re snowboarding? Or feel as relaxed as you do in your hammock while taking that bumpy flight? Hypnosis can help.

With hypnosis the hypnotist can take you back to a time where you felt confident, whether that was last weekend when you were snowboarding down Mt. Hood or when you were in high school and star of your team. The hypnotist will take you back to those times when you felt your most confident and connect, or anchor, that feeling to a specific gesture such as pressing your thumb and index finger together, or a word you can chant or even a piece of jewelry. So then whenever you need to feel that confidence again you can trigger it by pressing your thumb to your index finger, or chanting that magic word to yourself or wear that special piece of jewelry to bring back that feeling of being confident.

Removing that negative connection, or trigger and turning it into a positive one works much the same way. If rush hour traffic stresses you out every commute, then the hypnotist can take you to a relaxing time and anchor it to the trigger of pressing together of your fingers or even deep breaths. When it comes to anxieties or phobias to activities such as flying, the process is a little different. Instead of going back and finding a relaxing time and anchoring it to a trigger gesture, the hypnotist takes you back to find what is triggering the anxiety and why. Read more »

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Hypnosis in the Military

“Military Hypnosis” is an accepted term for a “specialist application of the normal tehniques of hypnotherapy.” According to the School of Hypnosis department of the College of Management Science in London, England, it applies to four major categories while in active duty. It is used in 1. Battlefield analgesia -where access to pain killers is not practical, 2. Surviving pain or mental pressure under torture, 3. Convincing a captured enemy to co-operate and 4. Enhancing battlefield performance or special operations. That’s quite a bit to take in. Yet, with a little research and common sense, it becomes quite clear early on that military applications for hypnosis go much further. Whether you want to investigate Radio-Hypnotic Intracerebral Control, used by the Russians as early as 1930, or present day treatment for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, one trail to follow is how the military introduces hypnosis through the terms “allowing” and “conceptualize”.

If you go to school to get certified as a hypnotherapist at The Northwest School of Hypnotherapy in Portland, Or. both terms will come up in the first week – it’s a familiar way to introduce some of the more advanced concepts that need to be understood and applied later to be a effective hypnotherapist. If you’re in boot camp, the same terms may apply to become an effective soldier. Read more »

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Hypnosis in China

In a culture where alternative medicine has been accepted practise for centuries, I was surprised to find hypnotherapy is just coming into vogue.
Although the somewhat modern age of hypnotherapy was ushered in by Jan Zhou in the 18th. century, it is still commonly referred to as “social constructionism” or “role-playing theory.” This theory suggests that the subject and “hypnotist” are really engaged in a role-play relationship, and therefore there is no hypnotism going on at all ( sounds very much like China ). Today, with no existing laws or guidelines for hypnotists or hypnotherapy training programs, small wonder the subject is a source of hot debate.
The Global Times reports two very conflictng views in the same article from Feb. 26, 2010. On one hand, there’s a quote from an anonymous employee of an eight day hypnotherapy school that charges the equivalent of four semesters at an accredited University stating, “that even a junior high school graduate could master the skills of a professional hypnotist.” On the other, they quote Dr. Wu Rengang, a psychiatrist at the No.2 Hospital in Beijing going so far as to say that, “as far as I know, there are only two qualified hypnotisits in China,” and “Maybe you can learn how to hypnotize someone within a week, but to become a professional hypnotist requires the skills needed to provide proper psychological guidance after hypnosis.” Read more »

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Weight Loss Hypnosis

All across the country more and more people are trying to lose weight. Whether it is so he or she can look better, feel better or for health reasons such as diabetes, people are trying to shed weight and are looking for help to do it. One place people are looking for help is through hypnosis. And the number of people taking the route of hypnosis is growing.

How hypnosis is used for weight loss is that a person is put into an altered state of consciousness, also known as a trance state. This is a state where the person’s attention is highly focused, making him or her more responsive to suggestions for behavior modification. This does not mean being able to make a person do something he or she would find morally objectionable, but rather implanting a suggestion like when the person has a craving for something sweet that she would reach for the apple rather than the chocolate bar. Along with modifying the eating habits, hypnosis can also be used to alter the thought pattern associated with exercise. While under hypnosis the suggestion of taking the stairs instead of the elevator could be introduced.

Hypnosis can also be used to help combat negative self talk. This is the inner dialog that can cheer a person on and tell him good job for eating those Brussels sprouts or make him feel guilty and like a failure for having that tic tac. Hypnosis can reprogram that voice to tell a person that he’s not a failure, but just slipped up and will do better when next presented with a similar situation.
Using hypnosis for weight loss might not be a quick fix for everybody however it definitely can aid will power and ease the change in ones lifestyle that is necessary to lose weight and keep it off.

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Hypnosis For “In The Zone” Sports Performance

If you’ve been reading the sports section these days, chances are good you have run into an article or two on how the world of sports is starting to take hypnosis and hypnotherapy very seriously.

“In the Zone” is a term recognized throughout competitive sports as a state of optimal performance. The use of hypnotherapy is increasingly associtated with facilitating this highly desired mindset. It seems, however, for many coaches and trainers who use hypnosos tehniques, the first hurdle is to get past the negative associatton many athletes have towards the term “hypnosis” and “hypnotherapy.”

“One thing I learned early on about hypnosis is quit calling it that,” quotes a New York Times article with Bob Reese, former head trainer of the New York Jets. Once an athelete is comfortable enough with “suggestions” to help use his concentration powers to get “in the zone”, Reese continues, he uses a post hypnotic command, such as tugging on an ear, that brings the athelete back to that heightened sense of concentration while staying in the game. In the same article, Dr. Dwight Damon, then president of The National Guild of Hypnotists, was referred to as saying that he believed more and more often the Guilds then 7,000 members were using hypnosis to help athletes improve performance. Read more »

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