Tuesday, January 2, 2018

What You Can (and Cannot) Expect from Hypnotherapy

(This blog was originally posted on October 20, 2014)

Photo by Rick Hustead

                I would like to clarify a couple of things about hypnosis and my role as a certified hypnotherapist. First, as I explain on my website, hypnosis is a natural, drug-free and highly effective therapeutic modality that has been used for centuries to help people change mental scripts for unwanted beliefs or behaviors that no longer work for them. Whether you want to lose weight, quit smoking, increase your self-confidence, overcome a fear or phobia, or achieve just about any vocational and avocational self-improvement goals, hypnosis can help you get it done.
                My goal is to help each and every one of my hypnotherapy clients to achieve his or her vocational and avocational self-improvement goals. I participate in continuing-education courses throughout the year to fine-tune my therapeutic skills and learn new techniques that I can apply in my practice. Between sessions with my clients, I make myself available to answer any questions or discuss an issue that may have come up during the week via a follow-up phone call, e-mail correspondence or both. I provide a recording of the hypnosis component of their therapy for them to listen to during the week and even give them “homework” assignments to help reinforce the new behavior until their next hypnotherapy session. These assignments may include breathing/relaxation exercises to practice, maintaining their Mental Bank program by writing in their Mental Bank ledger each night before bed, reading specific articles or watching online videos about related hypnotherapeutic techniques that are available via the Hypnosis Motivation Institute online video library.
                I work with my clients to achieve their stated goals; when they have accomplished what they set out to do, we typically part ways until they want to work on something new. I generally do not need to explore unrelated issues or discuss experiences that occurred long ago in my clients’ lives unless they state or believe that event pertains to their presenting issue or affects how they currently lead their lives. Having said that, hypnotherapy is not an overnight miracle “cure” for anything and everything that ails or distresses you. By the time most people come in for hypnotherapy, many months or even years have passed since the unwanted belief or behavior was created. Meanwhile, their subconscious mental script has had plenty of time to nurture and reinforce that unwanted habit. Although hypnotherapy is also generally a shorter-term therapy than many traditional psychotherapeutic modalities, it will likely take more than one hypnosis session to change and/or permanently remove that behavior.
Finally, California law allows me to provide hypnotherapy as a complementary or alternative treatment to help my clients to achieve vocational and avocational self-improvement goals (Business and Professions Code 2908). For example, I am certified to help people manage pain and individuals who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder to deal with a myriad of physical and emotional symptoms. However, I may only do so with a referral from a licensed medical doctor or mental-health professional; I must receive a referral from both of these health-care providers to work with a client who has PTSD. I ethically and legally cannot and will not address some issues (e.g., age regression therapy to identify possible past abuse) or diagnose medical or mental-health symptoms. If I feel that your issues are or become beyond my scope of expertise as a hypnotherapist, I will refer you to a licensed medical doctor or psychologist for further evaluation and/or treatment.

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 http://www.calminsensehypnotherapy.com/.
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