Women’s Health magazine is one of the UK’s most respected publications. So when one of their editors asked me if I could help to boost her confidence for an article in the magazine, I said yes.
When I tell people I’m a hypnotherapist, one of the most common questions they have is, “Is there any proof that hypnotherapy actually works?”
The answer, of course, is yes. There are thousands of clinical hypnotherapists around the world who make a living out of helping people. And they’d hardly be thriving if it didn’t work.
But one of the best examples I can give you that proves hypnotherapy really does work involves Women’s Health magazine, whose executive editor Nikki Osman recently contacted me to ask if I could help her. She was having trouble with her confidence and wanted to know if there was anything I could do. I readily said, ‘Yes’.
How hypnotherapy can help boost confidence
Nikki explained to me that she felt like she had lost much of her confidence since returning to work after Covid. She had started telling herself that she wasn’t as confident as before – and had got into a cycle of repeating this idea.
By repeating it, she was steadily reinforcing the notion that her confidence had diminished. Unfortunately, repeating negative thoughts is something that millions of us do. If something doesn’t quite go to plan, we start to tell ourselves that we’re no good at it.
Do any of these sound familiar?
- I’m no good at socialising – so I’ll stay in.
- I’m no good in meetings – so I’ll keep quiet.
- I feel anxious on busy trains – so I’ll walk.
- I hate flying – so I’ll drive.
It’s like having a really bad performance coach on your shoulder – one who confirms all of your worst suspicions!
Hypnotherapy helps you to think alternative thoughts.
Why having good chemistry is important in hypnotherapy
I’d already helped Nikki a few years ago when she wanted help to overcome her fear of public speaking. So I knew that she and I were a good match for each other.
As you’ll discover from reading other blogs of mine, a hypnotherapist and their client should be a good match. The client needs to believe in the process, be willing to change – and feel comfortable with their hypnotist.
The hypnotist, meanwhile, needs to feel a good rapport with the client and feel like they’ll be able to help.
With all boxes ticked, we booked in two Zoom calls for Nikki’s online hypnotherapy sessions.
The power of online hypnotherapy
In the magazine article Nikki wrote about her experience, she talks about how online hypnotherapy is very much on-trend at the moment. She also tries to dispel her readers’ concerns that it can’t be the same as in-person treatment.
“The degree to which hypnosis can help you has less to do with the mode of delivery and more to do with your hypnotisability,” she writes.
She’s correct on that score: it comes back to belief in the process and willingness to change. There are even online quizzes you can take to assess how hypnotisable you are.
During Nikki’s first session, we used some traditional hypnotherapy techniques to look at and neutralise what was causing Nikki’s crisis of confidence. There is usually some kind of trigger for feeling a certain way, and a skilled hypnotist can help you to identify it and change your response.
Next, we tried some Havening techniques, which I have explained more fully in other blogs.
Havening involves stroking your arms from shoulder to elbows. It can then involve distraction e.g. imagining you’re in a lovely place. Doing this works phenomenally well with painful memories. Another version involves you stroking your arms while repeating a word that describes how you feel e.g. angry. The touch and the distraction and/or the use of language really changes how we feel. There’s some important neurological stuff at its heart, and it works. You can try it yourself, but I’ve found that people enjoy better results when I help them to do it.
Nikki writes: “The techniques are so effective that, just 20 minutes into my first session, I wonder if I need the second. But I do it.”
Why you might need a second hypnotherapy session
Sometimes one session is enough, but I’ve discovered after treating thousands of people that the second session can be the real game-changer.
That’s because it is during the second session that the new way of responding to certain things starts to become habit. The client’s belief in the process is also typically at an all-time high – and belief is a very important part of the process.
So when you have a very motivated client who is already starting to see some benefits, the reinforcement we can establish during the second session really helps. Sometimes more than two sessions are needed – especially in cases of trauma based work. But two is the norm in most cases.
The proof you need that hypnotherapy works?
In her article, Nikki wrote: “I no longer ‘need’ hypnosis; two sessions left me with the profound sense that something I’d lost had been returned to me.”
I’d say that’s the definition of successful treatment! Nikki’s verdict of 10 out of 10 for ‘quick results’ and ‘confidence building’ is further proof that, in Nikki’s eyes, hypnotherapy really does work.
What’s interesting is that it was Covid 19 that brought on Nikki’s crisis of confidence. Lockdown proved to be a life-changing event for millions of people – and I am now seeing many people who feel like their lives are not what they once were.
During an initial free consultation with a new client, I explain that positive change is almost always achievable. We can find your lost mojo. We can stop you from feeling anxious about things that didn’t bother you before.