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This week is Mental Health Awareness week. There is a good argument for suggesting every week should be Mental Health Awareness week; that every day should be Mental Health Awareness day. We all have mental health but it’s when our mental health starts to control our life that some people seek professional help. The recent tragic death of Frightened Rabbit singer Scott Hutchison brought this home to many.

Hypnotherapy is one area which has great success in helping people with mental health issues. Hypnosis has long been fodder for television shows and stand-up acts, and most people are familiar with hypnotists who claim to be able to make anyone do anything while under hypnosis. But hypnosis is no longer just a sideshow performance, and an increasing number of people are turning to hypnosis to quit smoking, get over depression and anxiety, lose weight, and forget about phobias. Mind Generating Success is a successful hypnotherapy practice based in the west of Edinburgh.

Definition of hypnotherapy

Contrary to popular belief, hypnosis is not a state of deep sleep. It does involve the induction of a trance-like condition, but when in it, the client is actually in an enhanced state of awareness, concentrating entirely on the hypnotist’s voice. In this state, the conscious mind is suppressed, and the subconscious mind is revealed.

The therapist can suggest ideas, concepts and lifestyle adaptations to the client, the seeds of which become firmly planted.

Hypnotherapy aims to re-programme patterns of behaviour within the mind, enabling irrational fears, phobias, negative thoughts and suppressed emotions to be overcome. As the body is released from conscious control during the relaxed trance-like state of hypnosis, breathing becomes slower and deeper, the pulse rate drops and the metabolic rate falls. Similar changes along nervous pathways and hormonal channels enable the sensation of pain to become less acute, and the awareness of unpleasant symptoms, such as nausea or indigestion, to be alleviated.

Mental Health issues can affect different people in different ways. Of course, we are all different. However, there some consistent signs which indicate mental health problems. For example, if someone believes they are inadequate or unworthy, their behaviour will reflect this. Therefore, they act in a way that indicates they can’t do things or aren’t very good at doing things. Among these behavioural traits are:

• feeling hopeless or depressed
• feeling bored with life
• having no motivation
• feeling constantly anxious or fearful of making a mistake
• lack of assertiveness
• feeling overly sensitive to criticism
• thinking there’s nothing to look forward to
• thinking negatively about yourself
• feeling tired a lot of the time
• feeling like a failure
• wishing your life was better

Hypnosis is thought to work by altering our state of consciousness in such a way that the analytical left-hand side of the brain is turned off, while the non-analytical right-hand side is made more alert. The conscious control of the mind is inhibited, and the subconscious mind awoken. Since the subconscious mind is a deeper-seated, more instinctive force than the conscious mind, this is the part which has to change for the client’s behaviour and physical state to alter.

What form might the treatment take?

Firstly, any misconceptions a potential client may have about hypnosis should be dispelled. The technique does not involve the client being put into a deep sleep, and they cannot be made to do anything they would not ordinarily do. They remain fully aware of their surroundings and situation and are not vulnerable to every given command of the therapist. The important thing is that the client wants to change some behavioural habit or addiction and is highly motivated to do so. They have to want the treatment to work and must establish a good clinical rapport with the therapist in order for it to do so.

The readiness and ability of clients to be hypnotised varies considerably and hypnotherapy generally requires several sessions in order to achieve meaningful results. However, the client can learn the technique of self-hypnosis which can be practiced at home, to reinforce the usefulness of formal sessions with the therapist. This can help counter distress and anxiety-related conditions.

The process begins with an initial consultation meeting. This will last about an hour and establish the needs of the client and what they want to ach

If you want more information about the life-changing benefits of hypnotherapy, email me at mike.smith@mgs-hypnotherapy-services.co.uk or text or phone me on 07521 353 787.

Evening appointments are available.

As a special offer for readers of The Edinburgh Reporter there is 10% off every session. Just quote ER2018 when making an enquiry.

Visit Mind Generating Success for more information.