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Michelle A Leonard Hypnosis FAQ
Typical Questions Asked Most Often:
Q: What is Hypnotherapy?
Hypnotherapy is the process of using hypnosis to interact with the subconscious mind in an open-reflective process to create positive change in your life. There are many techniques and many styles and many applications of hypnotherapy. They all have several things in common: (1) a strong desire to change, (2) a state of deeply relaxed focus, and (3) language and visualization in relationship to emotions.
Q: What is Hypnosis?
Hypnosis is simply a state of relaxed focus, a state of hyper-acuity. It is a natural state. In fact, each of us enters such a state - sometimes called a trance state – several times a day: once when we are falling asleep, and once when we are waking up. That kind of fuzzy, timeless state between dreaming and awake is a trance state.
There are many other times that people enter a natural state of trance. Driving, watching TV, listening to music, scrolling through Facebook, working on a favorite hobby or activity in the "auto - pilot" state. These are all "altered states of consciousness," and all are various levels of trance. Trance is normal, natural and common.
Hypnosis is not a state of amnesia or of no awareness. Just the opposite true, in fact: hypnosis is a state of very heightened awareness and focus.
Q: What can't be treated with hypnotherapy?
Serious psychiatric or mental health problems are referred to a qualified psychotherapist or psychiatrist. Medical problems with the physical body must always be treated by a physician. Drug addiction, family dynamics disorders, clinical depression and other such problems need to be treated by doctors and psychiatrists. Most of these diagnosis can use hypnotist as a complementary treatment tool.
Q: Will I bark like a dog or cluck like a chicken?
Let me guess: you've seen a stage show where a hypnotist made people do all these crazy things. Or, perhaps you have ideas from Hollywood's movies and TV. The stage hypnotist carefully selects his subjects (watch how many volunteers he has sit down), and he chooses people he knows WILL bark like a dog. They will because somewhere inside them is a part that loves to entertain. And they will do it because, deep down inside, they don't believe there is anything wrong with barking like a dog.
Hypnosis cannot make you do something that is against your morals or ethics. All hypnosis is self-hypnosis, in truth, and no hypnotist can make you do something that you really don't want to do. That's why some people can be hypnotized to stop smoking and yet they still smoke. You have to want the change, agree with the change, and then hypnosis is an instrument and an anchor for helping make that change better, faster, and permanent.
Q: Will I lose control?
You always have control, and you can always hear what's going on. Hypnosis is nothing but a state of relaxed deep focus. It is a natural state that you enter at least twice a day (while waking up and while falling asleep!), and probably much more often than that. If at any time you are in trance and you wish to be fully awake, you can just count to yourself "1 - 2- 3" and open your eyes.
Q: Can I quit smoking with just one session?
There is more to changing a serious habit like smoking than just one or a few hypnotic suggestions, I'm afraid. In the simplest terms, the person must want the change, must believe they can do it, and they must have a replacement for smoking. Hypnosis can be used to find a healthy, effective replacement, and then it can be used to help flip the subconscious over to the new, healthy nonsmoker habits.
While sitting in a room with 50 other people in a seminar, or listening to a stop-smoking CD can work, and some clients have walked away after only one session not smoking ,it is usually much more effective to have personalized sessions with a hypnotherapist, who can customize the approach, language and replacement suggestions to match your lifestyle and circumstances.
Q: How much does hypnotherapy cost?
Of course it varies from city to city and from professional to professional. The average seems to be somewhere between $75 and $225 per session, with sessions commonly being about an hour long; longer for the first. Some Hypnotherapists offer pay-one-price programs - for smoking cessation, for example, where you pay $300 or $400 for all the sessions in the program. This can be a good approach to ensure that effective follow-up sessions take place.
Q: Why should I learn self-hypnosis?
Hypnosis is a powerful life skill for the modern person. There is a great deal of stress to be handled in today's work environment, schools, and society in general. Self-hypnosis, at the most basic level, is wonderful for de-stressing, calming, and restoring a healthful energy to your body. It gives a sense of control and connectedness to your mind and body that supports confidence and success.
After becoming more skilled in self-hypnosis, you'll find that it can help you maintain motivation and peak performance, as well as health and vigor. It can help you make clear decisions. It is incredibly powerful to be able to discover what your subconscious beliefs and patterns are and be able to change them at will. You can literally design your life! Cope with almost any problem. Remain calmer and centered in day to day life. You can design your patterns and beliefs to propel you to your highest goals and to your vision of success.
Q: How is hypnotherapy different than affirmations?
Hypnotherapy has the advantage of being able to communicate, in the present tense and always in positive terms, with the subconscious. Affirmations don't facilitate direct responses from the subconscious; they only seek to speak to the subconscious. A post-hypnotic suggestion is also different than an affirmation: effects tend to be more direct, more specific, and more immediate when using post-hypnotic suggestions.
Q: Is Hypnosis dangerous?
Myths about hypnosis, perpetuated by Hollywood movies, urban legends and fiction books lead people to think all kinds of things about hypnosis, including that it is somehow dangerous. Some people have heard that you can go into trance and not wake up. Or that the hypnotist can make you do things you don't want to do. These things are untrue. You are always in control, always able to "come back" to full waking state at any time if you wanted or needed to. The number one job of the subconscious mind is to protect you, and it is always on the job. Of course, you will want to choose a hypnotherapist that has been well trained and that is trustworthy. Select one that gives you confidence. Hypnosis is a safe and beneficial procedure when facilitated by an ethical and trained professional. I am here to bring you the most safe healing, positive life changing experience!
Q: How exactly does hypnosis work?
The human mind is extremely suggestible and is being bombarded daily with suggestive stimuli from external sources at every turn, and suggestive thoughts and ideas from the inside. A good deal of suffering is the consequence of negative thoughts and impulses invading one’s mind from the subconscious. Unfortunately, past experience, guilt feelings, impulses and desires are constantly pushing themselves into awareness, directly or in disguised forms.
These thoughts become feelings and actions which sabotage one’s happiness, health, and efficiency. Many of us have a buildup of “negative” modes of thinking, feeling and actions which persist as bad habits and the results are poor decisions being made. Like any habit they are hard to break or change. However, using hypnosis, we are able to transform negative attitudes into more positive ones. For some, changes happen very quickly if they believe the change can happen quickly. Other times, it often takes time to extinguish old thinking and behavior patterns, so do not be discouraged if there is no immediate effect. Even when no apparent changes happen on the surface, much is happening on the inside!
Q: What exactly is the subconscious mind?
The conscious mind, the mind that you are conscious of, is your “me.” It is the critical part of your mind. The sub-conscious mind is the one that directs your conduct and your actions through the habits, emotional desires that have been acquired from the influences of your environment.
Q: What if I cannot be hypnotized?
Most people feel or think this very same way. The fear is giving up control. The opposite is actually true. You are exercising a more powerful form of thought-control than at other times by accepting the suggestions given. The only thought to prevent you from going into hypnosis is the thought, “I can’t be hypnotized.”
Q: I’m not sure this will work for me. Am I hypnotizable?
Over 90% of all people are hypnotizable if seeing a well-trained Hypnotist. The stronger willed, more determined, and more intelligent you are, the easier it is to be hypnotized. It is your willingness to accept suggestions that makes hypnosis possible. If you resist suggestions, hypnosis will not occur because you are the master of your own mind.
Q: Must a person be deeply hypnotized to be helped?
No. Most hypnotherapeutic work is done in a light to medium state of hypnosis. As a matter of fact, if a less-skilled Hypnotherapist allows you to go to deep into hypnosis you may be too relaxed to respond to suggestions and have the most effective therapy. Even in a light state of hypnosis you are 200% more suggestible.
Q: How much will I remember in Hypnosis?
It totally depends, if you want to, you will remember everything that is said, however if you are used to the experience or find yourself drifting off into other thoughts you can allow your focus and attention to wander off and remember very little. Remembering the experience is entirely an individual thing, but the bottom line is if you stay focused and want to remember you will.
Q: Can hypnosis hurt me? Is it safe?
In over two hundred years of recorded hypnosis history, there is no documented case of anyone being hurt with hypnosis. Hypnosis can only be used in a positive way.
Q: How quickly will I experience results from hypnosis?
There’s a lot of factors at work here. First, and foremost, there’s your motivation level, a commitment, and a determination. If your motivation and commitment level is HIGH, you’ll likely experience results straight away or very quickly. If it’s low, you may stop going to the hypnotherapist or stop listening to that new tape long before you see any results. Other factors that determine your success can include your comfort-level and respect for the hypnotherapist you’re working with, as well as the regularity of your hypnosis sessions.
You will actually have to do some WORK along the way, such as attending your hypnosis sessions or listening to your self-hypnosis tape on a daily basis. If you are expecting to be “put to sleep” and awaken “never wanting to eat chocolate again,” you’re probably destined for disappointment. It just doesn’t happen that way. On the other hand, I have many clients who quit smoking after my `one smoking session`, they were what I’d call HIGHLY MOTIVATED and have COMMITMENT.
YOU HAVE TO BELIEVE!
Q: Who can be hypnotized?
Anyone with reasonable intelligence can be hypnotized. The only ones who may not be able to be hypnotized are people with severe mental disability and children under the age of five, in both cases it’s because they may not understand the words you are saying or be able to follow your instructions. If you are able to read a book and follow simple instructions you are hypnotizable, but only if you want to be.
Q. Will the therapist have to touch me?
Some therapists will touch you on the wrist, shoulder, neck or forehead to test whether you are properly relaxed or to assist you into a deeper state of hypnosis. They will seek your permission first.
Q: How many sessions will I need?
Simple problems like stress reduction or public speaking may only require as little as one or five sessions of approximately 30-40 minutes. More deeply rooted problems may require more sessions. We also see many clients for seasonal tune ups. A great way to start the season off on a high note!
DISCLAIMER: It’s important to understand that hypnosis is not a treatment or cure for diseases, mental illness, and people suffering from psychosis, suicidal depression, or that are on medications for psychological stability. Hypnosis is not a substitute for prescribed medication. All individuals should be seen regularly by their doctors or psychiatrists. Any decision you make involving the treatment of an illness should include advice of the medical doctor. Before making any change with your diet and exercise, or complementary care routine be sure to consult with your physician.