MY PATH TO HYPNOTHERAPY
I’ve been working with individuals, families, and groups since 1991. However, it was not until 2013 that I discovered a method called hypnotherapy. Since then, I have become a National Board Certified Fellow in Clinical Hypnotherapy, which mandates annual continuing education to maintain the highest professional development and practice standards.
My journey to becoming a hypnotherapist was a natural progression because Hypnosis incorporates the properties of mental, physical, spiritual, and metaphysical teachings practiced in my personal life. It felt right to share this transformative modality with my clients.
Just a decade ago, hypnosis was not widely used nor accepted in mental health. An even smaller percentage of hypnotherapists were Black women, and I knew that it wouldn’t be easy to push through glass ceilings and sit at tables dominated by men.
But here we are over a decade later, and my services are sought out by people of all socioeconomic backgrounds, ethnicities, and gender identities and from across the nation, including actors, film and television executives seeking hypnotherapy consultation and voice-over services.
Over the years, I have developed and continue to fine-tune my very own culturally attuned method when working with people. It is a fine blend of empowerment and liberation-focused practices, Neuroscience, Interpersonal Neurobiology, Attachment Theory, Mindfulness Meditative Practices, Positive Psychology, Cognitive Behavioral and Mind/Body Therapies.
WHAT IS HYPNOTHERAPY?
Hypnotherapy is a complementary therapeutic tool used to effect real change in the lives of people like you and I. With care, this method can modify unhealthy coping mechanisms, shift internalized oppressive beliefs, and increase confidence in order to make impactful changes in your life.
Hypnotherapy is a natural, yet altered state of mind, where the critical factor of the conscious mind is relaxed and selective thinking is amplified. Selective thinking (focused concentration), is the ability to rest your mind on a selected idea. This helps to facilitate communication between the conscious and the subconscious mind.
(VERY) BRIEF HISTORY OF HYPNOSIS
Hypnotic practices have played important roles in religion and religious ceremonies beginning 4000 years ago. Today we have chairs that recline in comfortable offices, but thousands of years ago in Egypt, there were something called ‘Sleep Temples’ (also known as dream temples). Sleep temples were places people went for healing, like hospitals, for physical and mental ailments. Patients were put into a trance-like or hypnotic state to analyze their dreams in order to determine treatment. Sleep temples also existed in Babylon, Persia, Britain, Scandinavia, America, Africa, India, and China.
WHAT DOES IT MEAN?
When we break down the word Hypnotherapy, we can see that the first part, hypno (or hypnos) is a Greek word meaning ‘sleep’ and the latter part, therapy, means the “treatment of disease or disorders”. So, hypnotherapy is a method used to help heal or treat through a sleep-like or altered state.
The American Psychological Association (APA) endorses hypnosis as a branch of psychology. The APA’s definition for hypnosis has been revised over the years; however, the most recent definition is “a state of consciousness involving focused attention and reduced peripheral awareness characterized by an enhanced capacity for response to suggestion”.
CAN I BE HYPNOTIZED?
The ability to go into a hypnotic state has been a practice for centuries. Hypnosis is natural which means most people can go into some level of trance. In fact, 25% of people enter a light trance; 45% enter a medium trance; 25% can go into a deep trance; and 2% – 5 % of the population have difficulty going into trance. The good news is a light trance is all that is needed for hypnotherapy to be effective. Everyone experiences hypnosis at one time or another, like when driving down a familiar road one minute, and then arriving at your destination without recalling how you got there.
HOW IS IT USED?
Hypnotherapy can lessen or resolve problems or symptoms while increasing or improving desirable thinking and behavioral patterns.
Here’s a list of problems that people may want to resolve through hypnotherapy:
- To Cut Emotional Ties
- To Reduce Dental Fears
- To Forgive and Move On
- To Reduce Social Anxiety
- To Overcome Test Anxiety
- To Recover From Heartache
- To Decrease Fears and Phobias
- To Improve Sports Performance
- To Obtain Body and Weight Balance
- To Increase Self Love & Body Positivity
- To Ease The Effects Of Labor and Childbirth
- To Improve Self-esteem and Confidence Building
- To Slay The Inner Critic, Imposter Syndrom, and Self Doubt
- To Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking or Speaking Up For Self
- To Heal From Racial Trauma (including intergenerational, historical, and cultural trauma)
- To Heal Emotional Trauma (rejection, abandonment, abuse, neglect, bullying)
- To Heal Other Traumatic Experiences (crime victim, natural disasters, war, community violence, intimate partner violence)