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Sydney Hypnotherapy, Meditation
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Frequently Asked Questions

Judith Lissing, Clinical Hypnotherapist and Meditation Coach, Double Bay, Sydney

What is Hypnosis?

Hypnosis is a trance-like state of heightened awareness.  Everyone goes in and out of natural trances many times a day.  If you’ve ever walked or driven somewhere whilst concentrating so deeply on something else that when you arrived, you couldn’t remember the actual process of driving or walking, then you’ll know what it is to be in a trance.  Hypnosis is such a state brought about with the aid of a hypnotist.

What is Hypnotherapy?

Hypnotherapy is therapy conducted whilst the client is under Hypnosis. Hypnotherapy works by inducing a trance-like state within a client during which they are very relaxed but fully aware of their surroundings and only concentrating on the hypnotherapist’s voice. It is different from sleep and closer to a relaxed state of wakefulness where breathing and heart-rate slows and brain-waves change. The client is alert, always exercises choice and control, and is empowered by accessing their own inner resources and healing ability rather than simply obeying a command. Once in a state of hypnosis, under the guidance of the hypnotherapist, the client is able to take control over any involuntary thoughts, behaviour or feelings taking place in the sub-conscious, thereby bringing about the changes they want.

What if I can’t be Hypnotised?

As with all things, some people will enter a hypnotic trance more easily than others. But because trance is a natural state, anyone can be hypnotised providing a) they understand what is spoken to them, and b) they consent to the process.  If you feel uncertain or insecure you should spend time with your hypnotherapist first to establish trust and rapport. This will make the process smoother and more comfortable and increase the likelihood of successful therapy.

Will I have control over what I do when I’m Hypnotised?

Yes.  Although the hypnotherapist is offering suggestions to the unconscious mind, the client will not accept a suggestion that they choose not to.  In hypnotherapy, the client is not under the control of the hypnotherapist. Hypnosis is not something imposed on people, but something they do for themselves. A hypnotherapist simply serves as a facilitator to guide them.

How effective is Hypnotherapy in treating my problem?

Hypnotherapy is most effective when the client is highly motivated. This is why it is so important that you come to therapy because YOU want to, and not because someone else wants you to.  As with any therapeutic modality some clients will experience great benefits and other less.  But there is now ample scientific evidence that Hypnotherapy can be highly effective in treating many conditions ranging from chronic pain to weight loss.

What is Meditation?

Meditation is a state of heightened focus or awareness.  It is a technique during which the mind mental activity may be slowed, and deep mental and physical relaxation may occur. The technique is simple but not easy. As with any newly learned skill, patience and persistence are necessary for lasting benefit.

Can anyone learn to Meditate?

Anyone motivated to learn meditation can easily do so.  Motivation is important because although the process of meditation is a simple one, to gain maximum benefits it must be practiced regularly.  This regularity of practice requires discipline.  Just as a new exercise routine requires regular and disciplined practice before the benefits are realised, so too it is with meditation.

What benefits can I expect from learning to Meditate?

Meditation taps into the innate potential for healing that we all have. It mobilizes and develops our ability for self-awareness and self-compassion as well as compassion for others, helping to improve self-esteem and providing a general feeling of relaxed well-being.

What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is the capacity to be completely present and attentive. A common definition (by Jon Kabat-Zinn) is “paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment and non-judgementally”.

What is the difference between “mindfulness” and “meditation”?

Meditation is the half-hourly practice one does daily to train one’s brain to be focused and present. Mindfulness is what you may do for the other 23 1/2 hrs each day, the moment to moment awareness of being present without judgement, with whatever happens to be in that particular moment. This awareness is empowering and allows one to live their life fully, not just watch it speed by.

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