A Gentle and Powerful Approach to
Until you are willing to be confused about what you already know, what you know will never grow bigger, better or more useful ~ Dr Milton H. Erickson
WHAT IS ERICKSONIAN HYPNOSIS?
When you hear the word “hypnosis” you might think of the traditional form of Hypnosis where the powerful, authoritative hypnotist implants suggestions in his subject, such as, “you are getting very sleeeepy. Your eyelids are growing heavier and heavier. You will quit smoking…”
Hypnotic trance however exists in many different forms in everyday life. Sometimes it is recognised and utilised (hypnotherapy, rituals, or dance, for example), but most of the time it goes unnoticed (daydreaming, people’s behaviour in lifts, or irrational fears, to name a few). In fact, people live most of their lives in one trance or another and the job of the hypnotherapist is generally not to hypnotise them, but to de-hypnotise them. The true hypnotists in life are teachers, religious leaders, and even advertisers.
Hypnotherapy is simply the use of trance for therapeutic purposes. Traditional hypnotherapy uses commanding language, as in the above example, called direct suggestion. This method sometimes works, but not for everybody. Some people resist these suggestions.
Ericksonian hypnotherapy on the other hand uses more of what it is called indirect suggestions. Indirect suggestions are much harder to resist because they are often not even recognised as suggestions by the conscious mind, since they usually disguise themselves as stories or metaphors. An example of an indirect suggestion is ” and perhaps your eyes will grow tried as you listen to this story, and you will want to close them, because people can, you know, experience a pleasant, deepening sense of comfort as they allow their eyes to close, and they relax deeply.”
Think about the following scenario: A child of five years of age is carefully carrying a full glass of milk to the dinner table. The parent of the child warns in a stern voice, “don’t drop that!” The child looks up at the parent, stumbles, drops the glass, and spills milk everywhere. The now angry parent shouts, “I told you not to drop that! You’re so clumsy. You’ll never learn!”
As unintentional as it may be, this is an example of hypnosis. The powerful authoritative voice (the parent), having created through indirect suggestion (“don’t drop that!), an altered state (trance), has issued a direct post-hypnotic suggestion (“You’re so clumsy. You’ll never learn”). “Post-hypnotic” because, if the child accepts the suggestion (and children often do), he or she will always see themselves as clumsy. This post-hypnotic suggestion by the parent may well adhere to the directive in the future, sabotaging the child’s success.
Milton Erickson is considered the father of modern hypnotherapy, one of the fastest growing and influential branches of hypnotherapy today. His methods have inspired short term therapy, guided imagery, and NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) to name a few. He is often referred to as “the greatest therapist who ever lived.”
I am always open about my thought process and the approaches I use because I consider the work to be collaboration.
Here are some of the issues I work with:
- Emerging from depression
- Becoming less anxious, more relaxed, more confident
- Healing traumatic memories that may be inhibiting or upsetting you in the present
- Improving your relationship with yourself
- Improving your relationship with others
- Taming a harsh inner critic
- Mastering panic attacks
- Overcoming phobias
- Grieving in a healthy way
- And many other issues as well
Regardless of the issues, my overall goal is to provide a place that is welcoming and confidential where you can engage with a skilled psychotherapist to create positive changes in your life.
My Unique Approaches
I don’t confine myself to any single theoretical orientation. I utilize a variety of approaches favouring brief solution focused (BSF) methods. My goal is to ensure you get the changes you want both effectively and quickly.
My practice is influenced by Positive psychology, Human Givens psychology, Buddhist Psychology & Mindfulness, Internal Family Systems, Focusing, Emotional Intelligence, Positive NeuroPlasticity Therapies and Hypnosis.
It's All About You
After all, the key here is to help you as quickly and as effectively as possible ~ Not to pigeon-hole you into some set way of looking at all people, whether it works for you or not.
Contact me if you could benefit from a therapist who will work with you to find the solutions that YOU want, efficiently and effectively.