Hypnosis Part 10 - Approaches to Hypnotherapy

There are several different approaches to hypnotherapy, each with their own unique techniques and philosophies.

Different approaches to Hypnotherapy

Some of the most common approaches to hypnotherapy include:

  • Ericksonian Hypnotherapy: This approach, developed by Milton Erickson, emphasizes the importance of tailoring hypnotherapy to the individual. Ericksonian hypnotherapy uses indirect suggestions and storytelling techniques to bypass the conscious mind and access the unconscious.
  • Dave Elman Hypnotherapy: The Elman approach to hypnosis was developed by Dave Elman, a well-known American hypnotist and radio personality in the mid-twentieth century. The Elman approach is characterized by its direct and rapid induction technique, which aims to quickly induce a state of hypnosis in the client.
  • Cognitive-Behavioral Hypnotherapy: This approach combines hypnosis with cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) techniques to help individuals change their thought patterns and behaviors. This approach can be especially helpful for treating phobias, anxiety, and depression.
  • Solution-Focused Hypnotherapy: This approach focuses on finding solutions to problems rather than analyzing the root causes. Solution-focused hypnotherapy uses hypnosis to help individuals identify their strengths and resources and develop strategies for achieving their goals.
  • Medical Hypnotherapy: This approach is used to complement traditional medical treatments and can help manage pain, improve sleep, reduce anxiety, and boost the immune system. Medical hypnotherapy is often used as an adjunct treatment for conditions such as cancer, chronic pain, and irritable bowel syndrome.
  • Hypno-analysis: This approach involves exploring and resolving unconscious conflicts that may be causing negative behaviors or symptoms.
  • Regression: This approach involves taking clients back to past events or experiences in order to uncover and release repressed emotions or trauma that may be contributing to current issues.
  • Past Life Regression Hypnotherapy: This approach involves using hypnosis to explore past lives, with the belief that past experiences can have a significant impact on current issues and behaviors. Past life regression hypnotherapy is often used as a form of spiritual exploration.
  • Transpersonal Hypnotherapy: This approach incorporates spiritual or metaphysical beliefs and practices into the hypnotherapy process in order to help clients connect with their higher self or spiritual purpose.

These are just a few examples of the many different approaches to hypnotherapy. The specific approach used will depend on the individual and the issue being addressed. It's important to note that these approaches are not mutually exclusive, and many hypnotherapists may use a combination of techniques depending on the needs and goals of their clients.

Ericksonian approach to Hypnosis

The Ericksonian approach to hypnosis is named after Dr. Milton H. Erickson, a renowned psychiatrist and hypnotherapist who developed a unique approach to hypnosis that emphasizes the importance of the client's individual experience, language, and context.

The Ericksonian approach is characterized by a more flexible and permissive style of communication, in which the hypnotist uses indirect suggestions, metaphors, and storytelling to guide the client into a state of hypnosis. Unlike the more structured and directive approaches to hypnosis, the Ericksonian approach takes into account the client's unique experience and perspective, and adapts the hypnotherapy session accordingly. The approach also emphasizes the importance of the therapeutic relationship between the client and the hypnotist, and the use of metaphor and storytelling as a means of accessing the client's unconscious resources and facilitating change.

The benefits of the Ericksonian approach to hypnosis include its effectiveness in addressing a wide range of issues, including anxiety, depression, addiction, and trauma, among others. The approach is also considered to be more gentle and non-invasive than some of the more directive approaches to hypnosis, and may be more suitable for clients who are resistant to being directed or who prefer a more collaborative and individualized approach to therapy.

The Ericksonian approach to hypnosis is widely used in clinical settings, and has been shown to be an effective tool for promoting personal growth, improving self-esteem, and facilitating positive change.

The Principles Of Ericksonian approach

Erickson was one of the most influential figures in the field of hypnosis. Following are the principles he used in his work:

  • Utilization. Anything can be used for positive growth, no matter how sick, crazy, strange or inappropriate it might appear.
  • Trance is a state in which learning and openness to change are most likely to occur.
  • Humor is important in breaking down resistance. Get someone to genuinely laugh and there is an unmatched openness.
  • Confidence in your voice is the most important thing of all in inducing trance.
  • The right level of trance is any level that permits your mind to take a look at what's going on at the subconscious level.
  • People resist commands, they don't resist descriptions.
  • Indirect suggestions are a method of overcoming resistance.
  • Conventional hypnosis sees trance as an artifact stemming from hypnotic suggestions, Ericksonian hypnosis sees trance as a natural psychobiological state that arises from life events.
  • Trance occurs with or without hypnotists.
  • Each person is radically unique, their attempts to fit into someone else's definition of 'success' or 'normalcy' or whatever have failed miserably so it's about time they get to know themselves.
  • Everybody experiences trance differently and every trance is a different experience.
  • Be willing and able to accept and work with whatever is in the present moment.
  • The problem is the solution. Whatever a person is struggling with is what will allow them not only to go into trance but also develop new ways of knowing and acting.
  • Welcome whatever is in each moment, harmonize with it, and become curious as to how it will continue to unfold in a positive way.
  • Join people at their map of the world.
  • People make the best available choice for themselves at any given moment.
  • Respect all messages from the client.
  • If it is hard work get specific (chunk down).
Everyone experiences hypnosis differently.

Dave Elman approach to Hypnosis

"People have invested hypnosis with a lot of false ideas. It is perhaps one of the most beautiful states that God has made possible to mankind and this beautiful state contains nature's own anaesthesia which God makes available to everyone of us. When you're taught to look at hypnosis properly, you see it as a very beautiful and wonderful thing " Dave Elman

The Elman induction involves a series of rapid, progressive relaxation techniques that focus on relaxing the muscles of the body and the mind. The hypnotist may use suggestions to deepen the state of hypnosis, such as counting down from 10 to 1, or using phrases like "deeper and deeper."

Once the client is in a deep state of hypnosis, the Elman approach typically involves direct suggestion to help the client achieve their desired outcome. The hypnotist may also use regression techniques to help the client uncover and address underlying issues that may be contributing to their symptoms or behaviors.

The Elman approach is often used in clinical settings to help clients overcome phobias, manage pain, reduce stress, and improve overall well-being. It is considered to be a highly effective approach to hypnotherapy, particularly for clients who are responsive to direct suggestion and who want to see results quickly.

"Hypnosis is a state of mind in which the critical faculty of the human mind is bypassed, and selective thinking established." Dave Elman's definition of hypnosis:

The Principles of Dave Elman approach

  • You cannot impart a suggestion unless the subject is willing to take it.
  • At all times and in all degrees of hypnosis, consent is imperative.
  • The subject has complete power of selectivity. He therefore reacts only to suggestions that are reasonable and pleasing to him.
  • In every stage of hypnosis, the subject is in control and can select the suggestions he wishes to accept. If the crisis of an unwanted suggestion should arise, the subject will either arouse himself from the trance state or continue in it but simply refuse to act on the suggestion.
  • Under hypnosis, a person has control of all his faculties except one - the conscious critical faculty. He can however hear, see, feel, smell, taste and speak.
  • With the critical faculty suspended the disbelief that such fantastic feats are possible are bypassed in hypnosis.
  • Kindness, professionalism and humility are the cornerstones of a good hypnotist.
  • There is no such thing as a hypnotist. Hypnosis operator, hypnotic director or dream pilot are all more accurate.
  • Hypnosis is a God given natural state of being available to all.
  • Rapidity of access to the hypnotic state is produced through the correct operations that result in that.
  • There is no limit to the number of techniques that can be used to trigger the desired response, there is no way in which you cannot hypnotize a person once you know how to utilize suggestion.
  • Elman states that if the operator substitutes the word "relaxed" for "hypnotized" every patient who needs therapeutic values of hypnosis can be relaxed instantly.
  • If you give client a suggestion which pleases them and which seems emotionally and morally reasonable to him, he will accept it despite the fact that under ordinary circumstances he might consider it an impossible suggestion.

Is NLP a different approach to Hypnosis?

NLP is a therapeutic approach that uses language, communication, and behavioral patterns to help individuals achieve their goals and improve their quality of life. While NLP is not a form of hypnosis per se, it does incorporate some hypnosis techniques and principles in its approach.

One of the key techniques used in NLP is called "anchoring" which involves the association of a specific stimulus or trigger with a desired state or behavior. This technique is similar to the use of post-hypnotic suggestions in hypnosis, and can be used to reinforce positive changes and behaviors.

Another technique used in NLP is called "reframing" which involves changing the meaning or interpretation of a particular situation or experience. This technique is often used in hypnosis as a means of shifting the client's perspective and promoting positive change.

Additionally, NLP practitioners may use hypnotic language patterns, such as embedded commands, to subtly influence the client's thoughts and behavior. These patterns are designed to bypass the conscious mind and access the unconscious mind, where they can be more effective in promoting change.

Overall, while NLP is not a form of hypnosis, it does incorporate some hypnosis techniques and principles in its approach, and can be used in conjunction with hypnosis as a means of enhancing its effectiveness.

Would you like to experience hypnosis for yourself? Contact us here for free 30 minute session and let's discuss it together.

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