Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy

What is hypnosis?

Hypnosis is a thing that actually comes naturally to us. It was discovered a long time ago but recognising it in its current form probably dates back to the mid 1800s.

Hypnosis is a natural focused  state of mind, it allows you to be more open to suggestions without the intrusion of your questioning faculties. Although that sounds like mind control, the style of hypnosis that I use allows the suggestions to come from you.

What is Hypnotherapy?

Hypnotherapy is the use of hypnosis to help people in a therapeutic setting.

Myths About Hypnosis

So there are some basic myths that we should deal with first:

  • You can’t get stuck in hypnosis.
  • You won’t lose control
  • You won’t tell me all your secrets in hypnosis
  • You won’t tell me your pin numbers in hypnosis
  • You won’t cluck like a chicken or make a sound like any other creature – unless you can think of a good reason.

Is It All Mind Control?

From my point of view, in a therapeutic setting, the only useful mind control is when a person gets control of their own mind, that's true self control.

Hypnotherapy is about using hypnosis to empower you with a level of self control that puts you in the driving seat of your life.

You get to decide how you want to act and react, because you should be at the centre of any therapy to do with you.

What does it feel like to be hypnotised?

There is no fixed response because we are all different. Everyone responds to hypnosis in their own way. On rare occasions people just appear to switch off and don’t remember what happened in a session. Mostly people feel comfortable and calm although you are still very present in the here and now. Some people wander off in their mind.

What Happens In A Hypnotherapy Session?

In the initial session is about an hour long, we would discuss your medical history in brief. This is to screen for people that I can’t work with, specifically that is people with epilepsy and a mental illness that includes some form of psychosis like schizophrenia.

We would discuss what you are aiming to achieve.

We would start by working out what works for you in relation to the goal that we have. I will check the use of eye movement therapy to see if it works for you, in some cases this gets us where we are going much quicker than hypnosis alone.

Hypnosis is achieved using what we call an induction. The induction that I use in therapy initially is based on a relaxation of body and mind, it is a gentle way to enter hypnosis. It’s an eyes closed process where you follow simple instructions and allow yourself to focus. Hypnosis is really a focusing of the mind. Your response to it will be unique to you based on your life experience and who you are.

We would do some hypnosis so that we can discuss your response to it. The response is on a spectrum, most people feel relaxed and open, but are surprised that they are still present in the moment. It’s important for me to know how you respond as much as it is for you. That way you know what to expect and I know how to present future sessions to you.

From my point of view it's not a competition to see whose will is strongest. I can't win that one. 

Hypnotherapy is a therapeutic alliance rather than a magic spell. I want to help you to learn how to resolve issues. I work with you but you will be doing some things as well.

In my experience if you’re not part of your own solution then in the long term you will still be reliant on outside help.


Peter French

Husband, Dad, Hypnotherapist, Software Engineer, Trainee guitar maker, Poor musician, Awful singer, Occasional writer.