So many of my clients bring interesting cases to me, everyone is different and so therefore interesting in their own way. But one case that stands out was a client who had “misophonia” – which meant that she experienced a heightened feeling of anxiety or “fight or flight response” in response to certain sounds – mainly that of other people eating. It was becoming difficult even eating around her family. This was a case for hypnotherapy.
With just two sessions we completely solved the problem, We went back in time to her childhood where the problem began – with just a very innocent situation (she didn’t really remember this consciously) but her subconscious mind had held onto it and certain sounds still triggered anxiety. And rather than getting better over time, it was getting worse. Going back to that event, in a safe and controlled way, meant that the problem was resolved almost immediately.
What I described above is known as regression hypnotherapy. It’s all about going back in time to where the problem was first triggered. When people have problematic emotions which are being repeatedly triggered, such as panic, anxiety, depression, etc. , it is usually because something happened which wasn’t fully processed at the time and then the subconscious mind holds onto that feeling, thinking that it’s protecting you.
Once you go back to it, and process the “memory” properly (I say memory in inverted commas because often we don’t remember the event consciously, but it’s stored away in our subconscious which is like a giant library). So once we go back to the original event the subconscious is able to understand that it’s over now and releases the emotion. It is extremely powerful and cathartic. There is more information about regression hypnotherapy in my blog post here: http://www.synergy-wellbeing.com/category/regression/
Are there any preparations required before embarking on hypnotherapy?
Not really. I often recommend that people don’t drink a lot of caffeine before a session because this triggers the fight / flight response – which is the opposite to the relaxation response – so it can interfere with the session a little and make it harder to relax. But other than that, no. Someone who meditates or is good at visualization will generally find they go into hypnosis a lot more quickly, but everyone can be hypnotized. We’re in a state of hypnosis when we watch the television!
I would love to help someone who feels that they are “over–sensitive” – and I would prefer to call it “highly sensitive” myself – because their sensitivities could relate back to childhood and things they are subconsciously holding onto which distressed them. Regression hypnotherapy can help to release the memories trapped in the subconscious so that those emotions are not triggered so readily or inappropriately in the future. EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) is also an excellent technique which I teach my clients a lot – and this can used as a self help tool whenever needed too, on a daily basis even!
How can we enable our subconscious to let go of bad feelings?
There is a technique which I use myself a lot, and also teach people about. It’s called mindfulness. The sad thing is that we are often told “don’t get upset / don’t cry, etc.” so we learn to push our feelings down – we suppress them. Another word for suppression is depression. So we can easily become depressed when we suppress our true feelings. One of the beautiful things that mindfulness teaches us is to be present as much as possible to our experience. So if you’re feeling angry, or hurt, for example, it’s much better to allow yourself to “feel” that feeling.
Contrary to popular belief, this doesn’t make it feel worse, it actually really helps! So, next time you’re feeling bad – ask yourself “how am I feeling? What does that feel like? Where do I feel that in my body?” – really acknowledge it. And – hey presto! The feeling seriously diminishes or disappears altogether! Our feelings just want to be listened to, to be heard. So once we do this, they are satisfied and they settle back down.
EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) is something else I practice, and this is wonderful for allowing us to let go of negative emotions. It is also known as the “tapping technique” and more information can be found on my website. For the Silo, Liz Davies Clinical Hypnotherapist and EFT Practitioner.