Mind: what is hypnotherapy and how can it help us in times of uncertainty?
For many of us, the last twelve months have been something that none of us predicted. From not being able to see the people we love or go to work as we knew it, colliding with financial instability and concerns about the health of the people closest to us. With non stop news updates, death counts and endless conversations about COVID, it’s been triggering. Whilst so much of this global stuff is out of our immediate control, the way that we react to it, is something that we can decide to take hold of. There really are so many lessons in everything that’s happening and so many of them are positive. During times of uncertainty there are huge opportunities for growth and this is one reason that the online therapy world has come alive.
Lydia Johnson is the founder of The London Clinic of Hypnotherapy. A Cognitive Hypnotherapist she is trained in Neuro Linguistic Programming, Meditation, Mindfulness and Emotional Freedom Technique. Having stumbled across Hypnotherapy in her twenties, it became a transformational and pinnacle moment for her. Witnessing the effectiveness of hypnotherapy and seeing the same progress in her clients in a relatively short space of time.
She believes that the power and potential of our state of mind is extraordinary, and works with her clients to educate them on how to tap into skills to let go of negative noise. She has learnt over time, that we all have the ability to manifest the lives we desire, the life we actually want to live in, if we are open and ready to evolve. Hypnosis is a safe way to open blocks, re-programme pathways and build confidence. She helps those who feel lost, teens, wild twenty somethings, performers, midlife unease, parental blues and anyone stuck in a loop. Understanding that each individual has their own story and is fascinated with the mind and body connection along with a compassionate and curious nature and a desire to help others.
For anyone who is learning about hypnotherapy for the first time, what exactly is it?
‘HYPNOSIS ALTERS OUR STATE OF CONSCIOUSNESS IN SUCH A WAY THAT THE ANALYTICAL LEFT-HAND SIDE OF THE BRAIN IS TURNED OFF, WHILE THE NON-ANALYTICAL RIGHT-HAND SIDE IS MADE MORE ALERT. THE CONSCIOUS CONTROL OF THE MIND IS INHIBITED, AND THE SUBCONSCIOUS MIND AWOKEN’
Hypnosis used to have a dated, zany reputation, stemming from the turn of the century- involving pendulums and a ‘look into my eyes, look into my eyes’ analogy. These myths are being eliminated along with the outdated associations, to bring hypnotherapy into the modern current world and utilise its many attributes. The mysticism does keep the intrigue alive, so that’s a plus for sure. It is basically an effective way to tap into your subconscious mind, enabling you to let go of outdated systems and patterns of behaviours keeping you on a loop. We are often in conflict, wanting to give up something up for example, and only lasting a few days…
Hypnotherapy can realign your subconscious to give you the power and tenacity you need, the craving or desire does not resonate anymore. Relief. It works. I love it. Almost like a tool panel or space in time that separates you from habitual, impulsive behaviours. I think it gives you the spatial awareness outside of the session, to make better decisions. It has personally helped and supported me for many years and the change in my clients is immense.
What do you find that your clients use it for?
Mainly addictions, anxiety, stress, emotional eating, fears and phobias too of course, for both parents, teens and students. Hot professionals and their wild adulteens! All the issues and ailments above could come under one umbrella, burn out, in all its different guises. I have treated whole families before. Like a ripple effect, the Father may come for stress and feel great afterwards, then I will see the daughter for eating issues and so the domino effect continues. It’s a family affair.
The clinic is based in the heart of Soho, so I see those in the film business also, the music industry and the public eye plus anyone needing a pick me up or support when stuck. The vibrant (not so much recently) area does dictate my clientele for sure.
Hypnotherapy can be used to tap in to our subconscious mind. How much of our learnt behaviour is driven by it?
I think Hypnotherapy is as much about our conscious mind as our subconscious. Once we understand the difference between the two, we can learn to utilise both to their full potential. They can work in unison. The subconscious mind will always try to align to your consicous mind. The way you talk to yourself really does matter. Once they are aligned we can access the flow state, so productive and useful.
When we feel conflicted with decision making for example, it is the conscious and subconscious mind that are in conflict. The heart and head scenario represents this also. A great explanation of the difference between the two, is driving a car. Our conscious mind is around 10% and is designed to avoid danger, pain and to stay alive. Therefore it enjoys the risk and safety element of looking out for signs and is fully plugged into this aspect, fulfilling its criteria to keep you safe in your vehicle. Our subconscious mind (your memory bank, childhood and creativity store) is about 90%. It knows how to drive the car itself, it can gear change etc on automatic pilot and get us to our destination without thinking, if we know the route already. Our eyes blinking is also our subconscious mind at work. Fascinating stuff I think!
Often when we drive our subconscious has a chance to breathe, that busy conscious mind is occupied, negative noise on low and actually decision making becomes easier. Do you find when driving or perhaps running, you are able to make decisions in a more succinct way? I know I do for sure and this explains why…
How can hypnotherapy be used to reach our full potential?
By understanding how to turn down the conscious mind and go to that deeper place inward, connect to that essence of being. All the power we need is within us.
In that place, addiction and anxiety don’t exist, it is pure and effortless and there we can re align our subconscious into our conscious way of being.
What have been some of the biggest breakthroughs you have witnessed with the people you have treated?
Giving up substances after a three hour breakthrough is overwhelmingly powerful. There is always a support system afterwards and I work closely with the fellowship and twelve step programme. It really can be the shift and support you need, that platform to elevate you and give you tools and techniques to move life forwards. Often, it is transformational. I have had an influx of Doctors recently, for obvious reasons and it is great to enable them to let go of their anxiety and stresses and witness the difference. Any scepticism is relieved when they are open for support. Hypnotherapy was definitely not in their medical training but it is uplifting when they are open minded and understand the benefits. I feel proud of these sessions for sure.
Hypnotherapy can be used to overcome our emotional attachment to the things that we know are bad for us. Why do we create those relationships?
We create theses relationships first and foremost through bad habit thinking and limiting belief systems. In a session we look at mind management – letting go of the inner critic essentially, the fear factory. This is powerful and effective, we are able to reach consciousness or enlightenment as others may call it. After this we can unravel emotional attachments by understanding their links to your subconscious mind. For example, a relationship reminding you of an absent parent. We can help you in a current relationship, with negative cycles, such as jealousy or trust issues. Or having to deal with a repeated arguments that do not seem to shift, keeping you stuck in the same story.
We can also work on dynamics, the ability to maintain being true to ourselves within the infrastructure of a relationship, the intimate energy between two people. We need to be able to be ourselves and be independent within the relationship also, it is a fine balance that can be out of kilter for many reasons, both past and present. In order to find happiness and fulfilment with another person, we have to understand how this works, let go of co-dependence and self-sabotage completely and understand the differing attachment styles. Your subconscious can store vital information which we can explore in depth during a session. It is unravelling but always safe.
The last year has been challenging for so many, how do you believe that hypnotherapy could help anyone who may be struggling?
The last year has been choc full of anxiety and stress for most people. It is exhausting, draining and all encompassing – both mentally and physically. I have noticed an intense sense of panic and doom in many clients, in the form of an attack causing significant disruption to life especially during these unpredictable times. Anxiety is the manifestation of our subconscious mind going into protection mode. Flight or fight – it is an automatic response from our nervous system to warn us and prepare us for dangerous situations. Our bodies release cortisol to our adrenal glands, sometimes causing our bodies to go into overdrive.
By using Hypnotherapy to tap into your subconscious, we are able to eradicate behaviours that are not useful and can learn to let go of relentless loops and patterns keeping us stuck – such as panic attacks or addictions, or relationships in the home. Our bodies are incredible at responding to nervous tension, think butterflies or blushing. If we mind manage and create positive neural pathways, we are able to align our bodies to work in the right way, alleviating stress and coping with the constant daily grind right now. We can effectively unlock deep-rooted behaviours that are ineffectual, allowing you to move forwards into new beginnings, despite the current climate.
Hypnotherapy can effectively let go of:
- Imposter Syndrome
- Fear of failure
- Toxic emotions
- Hidden rage
- Perfectionism & comparisonitus
- Negative self-talk & inner critic
- Bad habits
You will feel:
- A deeper sense of inner calm and clarity after a session – a seismic shift
- Connection with your sense of self and core values
- Able to reclaim the bond with all your close relationships and revitalise their dynamics
- A sense of control over bad habits and addictive tendencies
- Ready to let go of negative patterns of behaviours holding you back
- A sense of realignment and focus, able to access your ambition
- A fresh confidence and energy, to enhance creativity and balance
- Resilience – with an updated, bespoke tool kit and mental clarity that is easily accessible
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