ABOUT THIS APPROACH
The approach is an integrative (or pluralistic)) one – combining effective approaches from modern modalties of psychotherapy, hypnotherapy, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and Systemic NLP (NeuroLinguistic Psychotherapy) and is outcome-oriented, meaning we agree on what we are working towards as an outcome of therapy.
Some common features of Contemporary Psychotherapy include facilitating the client towards:
Affect regulation, called in this model ‘state management’;
Relating openly to the present moment through positive sensitisation to
somatic (body) intelligence (e.g. mindfulness, relational presence);
Alignment of cognitive and somatic self into an accepting ‘self-relation’;
Attuning behavioural patterns to own desirable beliefs and values;
Conditioning healthy responses and choices in the place of problematic reactions;
Establishment of value-driven, manageable goals;
Resolution of past through linking current cognitive and emotional resources to past episodes and safely processing trauma;
Integration of ‘parts’, sub-personalities or aspects of a fractured identity;
Development of a meaningful self-narrative;
Opening and developing “ecological” relating systems – intimate, social and spiritual.
Therapeutic trance is focussed attention directed in the best manner possible to achieve the patient’s goals. – Milton H, Erickson MD
Hypnotherapy is provided where requested or when considered appropriate, and can of course form an integrated part of any treatment. The aim is to treat physical and psychological conditions by creating change at the different levels where they originate, transforming the connections between conscious, cogntive awareness and unconscious mind/brain and nervous system functioning. The hypnotherapy approach I follow is also termed a “naturalistic” one, as it utilises the natural tendency of the mind and body to go into trance, generating new thinking and behaviour. Hypnotherapy can thus lead to creative change.
It utilises naturally-occurring trance states to create a state of mind both receptive to and conducive for change. You may have experienced such a state of mind when driving and not noticing the miles as they pass, or when becoming absorbed in a book or film. These and other common experiences show the capacity for absorption and dissociation in everyday life, two key aspects in therapeutic hypnosis, which simply enhances and extends these phenomena by a shift into a state of bodily relaxation, mentally and physically similar to that experienced when on the edge of sleep. In that state, new learning can take place as suggestions are made for creative change. Many people describe the experience, whilst typically overwhelmingly positive and relaxing, as being “not what I expected” – this is because of performances they may have witnessed during stage hypnosis or on TV, which is a stage “trick” much like any other stage “magic” and has basic differences from what we are doing in therapy (e.g. the subject is not made aware of what is happening and is not aware they in fact retain control; in therapy, you are always aware of that).
Systemic NLP – Neuro-Linguistic Programming – investigates how we process sensory information and language to shape our maps of the world, and how we can learn and grow from this. The systemic aspect emphasises what the changes you will make mean for you as a person, interacting with other people in your environment. It can be immediately empowering and enjoyable. It forms the basis of the therapist’s observation and information gathering (“modelling”), establishing clear and authentic behavioural and communication skills.
[Medical conditions must be diagnosed by your GP. I am happy to work with your GP to treat conditions such as IBS – in fact, many GPs recognise that clinical hypnosis is one of the only treatments that IBS responds to, and that includes changes in diet and lifestyle].