Thursday, April 27, 2017

Suggestions of a Scent

(This blog was originally posted on 2.3.2015)

Photo by Rick Hustead

After the New Year I typically do an early “Spring Cleaning” in which I donate clothes or other items that I no longer use to make room for new items I received as gifts over the holidays. When I started sorting this year I came across some old bottles of perfume that I hadn’t worn in ages. Curious, I spritzed one of my favorites into the air and inhaled deeply. Of course the composition of those scents had degraded by now; in their less pure form they were actually more intense. Equally intense was the power of my memories of the emotions I felt back when I used to wear that brand of perfume.

Good days, not-so-good days—it all came flooding back in a rush. I remembered the friend who introduced me to my former signature scent. Then that recollection reminded me where I was at that time: I was living in a suburb of London and had just started working on my post-graduate degree. In January, it would have been much colder and wetter in London than the current weather in Southern California. In fact, around this time twenty-four years ago, snow fell in Southeast London and blanketed the rooftops and pavements in neighborhood for several days….

That unexpected trek down memory lane served as a powerful reminder of why I do not wear perfume or use scented candles or incense when I work with hypnotherapy clients. Olfaction (sense of smell) is one of the most powerful triggers of memory and strong, pervasive emotional associations. As I explained in my previous blog titled Anchors, the mind creates a subconscious link or “anchor” between the scent a person perceives and whatever is going on in his or her life at that moment. Even though the details of a specific event will likely fade from the conscious mind over time, exposure to a scent or odor can trigger an unexpected memory that the subconscious mind associates with that moment in time.

Part of my work as their hypnotherapist entails helping my clients to create new, positive associations that will facilitate the achievement of their self-improvement goals. Therefore, it is important that minimize the possibility that something about me will unintentionally create or trigger a subconscious association between me and a previous, unwanted behavior that could impede the therapeutic process.


I am currently offering a 10 percent discount on all hypnotherapy for weight-loss/weight-management sessions. This offer is good through April 30, 2017. It is not exchangeable for cash and may not be combined with any other offer. For more information and to set up an appointment, please contact me at (661) 433-9430 or send an e-mail to

Also: save $250 toward a purchase of 24 sessions or more for personal training with Irvin Burton, CEO and Founder at Tiger Crane Martial Arts & Fitness. You can contact him at or call (661) 993-8621. 

Sara R. Fogan, C.Ht. is a certified hypnotherapist based in Southern California. She graduated with honors from the Hypnosis Motivation Institute in 2005. For more information about Calminsense Hypnotherapy® and to set up an appointment, please visit
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