By Selma Köhn

Some people have the understanding that hypnotherapy is a form of making someone unconscious and controlling them in a way that they don’t want to, which is a fatale, incorrect perception. This kind of misconception was partly created during the black and white movies era where the mystery of hypnotism was used to create any form of suspension in the story.  Furthermore, comic books and television carried on that interpretation.

Hypnotherapy is a very powerful tool to help a person overcome any issues.  Rather, putting someone into a conscious hypnotic state where the person is in a deep sleep-awake state, fully aware and in control of what is happening and what is around them.  Verbal interaction with the hypnotist is not only possible, but also necessary in order to change whatever comes to the surface.  Behind every habit of action is a habit of belief. We seldom know what these beliefs are as they lie in the hidden chamber of the subconscious mind.  Generally, we are in control of only 10% of our conscious brain and are actually steered by 90% of our subconscious mind.  Through hypnotherapy, you find out which beliefs are behind your repeated patterns, emotional troubles, mental stress or physical pain.  So during a ninety-minute session, you can be transformed into a better, healthier, happier, lighter, addiction-free person.  This comes with certain conditions of course.

Willingness to Change
First and foremost, it is absolutely crucial that the person is willing to change, consciously allowing themselves to become hypnotized and deliberately able to embrace the ride.  Only then can transformation start.  The road to freedom, health and happiness contains some hurtful obstacles that appear while under hypnosis, however, once they are discovered and put out of the way, the release is enormous.

Not everyone is comfortable sitting in the hot seat, and even though they consciously want it, sometimes subconsciously they aren’t there yet.  We all have an inner guard that literally resides in front of our subconscious mind protecting it from any outside threat; the will to change is one of them, which explains why to some people change is a rather difficult task.  In a lot of cases, sickness, stress or thought patterns serve them somehow and are part of their identity, making letting go difficult.  This also means that some people are more easily hypnotized than others.

Your Mind
It is all in your mind.  In order to change something, you need to go into the hidden chambers first that are divided into the conscious, subconscious and unconscious, each with a different functionality.  The unconscious mind is the space where everything, which we have ever learned or experienced, is kept and, to an extent, our reality created.  To gain access to the memories and beliefs that are kept there, it requires a real strong trigger.  It gets easier with the subconscious mind, which reveals its stored information once you turn your awareness to it, like recalling a memory consciously.  Your conscious mind is active when you are with all your awareness in the present. Furthermore, your subconscious mind is also responsible for the functioning and maintenance of your body which is the actual steering force, and lasting changes can only happen when they are planted there.  While most healing methods or therapies address the conscious mind, hypnotherapy accesses your subconscious and indirectly unconscious mind.

Dating back to ancient times where hypnotherapy was part of the traditional healing methods, it became very popular once more in the 1950s.  Since that time, several different schools and types of hypnotherapy evolved globally.  Now, in the medical and psychiatric community, it is increasingly becoming a complimentary treatment for a lot of issues ranging from unexplained chronic pain to psychological issues.  As a shortcut to your subconscious mind, hypnotherapy alters your state of consciousness and is a systematic and effective tool to implant in your subconscious mind the new desired transformation in the form of perceptions, beliefs, emotions or behaviors.  The reprogramming mainly occurs through positive suggestions tailor-made for individual needs while being in a sleep-awake state, where regardless of the depth of that state, the reprogramming functions anyway.

The Four Brainwave States
There are four different states: beta, alpha, theta and delta.  You are in a beta state when you are awake and fully aware, and are very relaxed when you are in the alpha state, the state where hypnotherapy begins.  You are in the theta state while meditating, where hypnosis is very deep.  The delta state is the deep sleep, and this is the healing stage.  Therefore, hypnotherapy puts you in the alpha and theta state where you are still fully aware.

How it Works
Every hypnotherapy session begins with an initial talk about the issue the client wants to improve, whether addressing depression, addiction, trauma, unexplained chronical pain, insomnia, weight loss or phobia.  The hypnotist gathers some additional information about the lifestyle, medical symptoms, history and other habitual patterns of the client.

The actual hypnosis starts after the hypnotist explains what will happen in the session.  While the overall structure of each session differs from one school to another and the type of hypnotherapy, some guidelines are common.  First, the client is inducted and deepened into the hypnotic state, then the client transmits gradually from the conscious into the deep relaxation-like state where the breathing gets shallower, the metabolic rate drops and the muscles and nerves relax.  More or less, the nervous system of the person goes to sleep yet his awareness of what is happening stays awake.  Then the discovery tour takes place.  The hypnotist and the hypnotized person enter into a balancing act between monologue, dialogue and instructions.  Based on the respective methodology of the hypnotist, the session unfolds differently having the same aim of helping the client to get better.  How many sessions are needed to treat one cause until it is resolved also depends on the methodology of each school and type.

Tree of Positivity
Usually, during the session, the client already experiences change, transformation and relief in which the intensity and depth of it depends on the clients’ readiness and ability to embrace the new state.  Accordingly, the brain follows suit and responds immediately.  You could say that during those ninety minutes of a session, the hypnotist plants a seed of positivity in the clients’ brain while he cuts the tree of negativity from its roots in regards to the respective topic.  However, the seed needs to grow and the tree to die, and so what happens after the session is almost equally important.

In order for the brain not to fire back, it is crucial that the client does his homework. This can include a recording with positive suggestions that the client receives from the hypnotherapist after the session.  The client has to listen to this recording every day for at least 21 days, as it is scientifically proven that the brain needs up to 21 days to change a habit or to be reprogrammed. This is a short process leading to a long-lasting transformation. The process described here is based on the common, classical approach.

When hypnotherapy is done correctly, as well as in a competent and ethical manner, it becomes a fast gateway to discover and enhance the underlying causes of your issues.  In fact, as a complimentary tool to classical medical treatment, it has proven to be highly effective.  Being incorporated into the medical field since centuries in the US, it is gaining momentum in Europe these days.

About the Author
Selma Köhn is a Rapid Transformational Therapist, Hypnotherapist, Energy Healer and Writer. She is trained by one of the UKs best therapists, Marisa Peer. In Cairo, she works with Oasis Clinics, The Counselling Unit for Psychological Development, Nun Center, The Wellness Hub and CSA and Horizon Studio.