Life Coaching, Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) and Hypnotherapy overlap quite a bit, which is why they are often grouped together. I like them because they are practical, fun and often work remarkably fast. I also find it fascinating to notice how my clients and I can so dramatically influence seemingly-intractable physical and emotional issues with simple, powerful exercises (e.g. the NIHCE guidelines for Irritable Bowel Syndrome recommend hypnotherapy as an effective non-medical intervention).
Do these approaches get to the ‘root’ of the problem?
A common misconception about Coaching, NLP and even the Behavioural Therapies, is that they ignore where the problem came from (e.g. patterns of depression linked to early family-dynamics), and so never properly resolve it. There may be some bad NLP practitioners out there who work in such ways – if so, they’re not doing NLP very well. Good, lasting NLP does look at the root causes (or ‘imprints’) of symptoms, but only in order to gain new perspective on how those patterns are continuing now, and to create more useful patterns for the future. This change can happen much more quickly than with traditional methods, if done well, for example with the Core Transformation process.
What is the Core Transformation process?
Core Transformation is one of the techniques I may use as part of a one-to-one session. It is a powerful NLP-style technique for helping us understand our symptoms at a very deep level. For more information, click this link to the Core Transformation website.
If I’m ‘put under’ will I still be in control?
This common concern often comes from having seen stage hypnotists getting people to do silly things. Hypnotherapy is not like that at all. For a detailed and amusing description of the social nature of stage hypnosis, see Derren Brown’s book ‘Tricks of the Mind’ – a funny, sceptical, enlightening book. But here's my guarantee: you will always be in control, because apart from anything else, that's the way it works best.
I don’t much like the terms ‘hypnosis’ or ‘trance’. The way I see it, we are all in a trance all the time, just different types: watching TV, reading, immersed in a conversation, driving, listening to music – time and wider awareness seem to vanish. The ‘deepest’ states seem to be when our attention is focused vividly and narrowly – when we seem to ‘lose ourselves’. Then all the clutter and internal chatter of our mind is shut off and we can clearly experience what we’re focused on. Sports people call this being ‘in the zone’.
I think that’s one of the reasons hypnotherapy can be so effective – you are ‘in the zone’ with your issue, and importantly, with the solution.
But can't you just 'magic' my problems away?
Plenty of people want a magic bullet -- "Alakazam! You're cured!" Of course, it doesn't work like that, and probably a good job too. If, on the other hand, a client says "I'm willing to do some work to get what I want," that's a good sign of motivation, and a good indicator that you'll be successful.
How many sessions will I need?
That depends on you and your issue. But for reasons of good practice I insist on at least two sessions. I would expect that most issues (e.g. depression, eczema, irritable bowel) would require no more than four sessions. My fees are here.
Where do you practice?
I am based in Enfield, North London. If travel is an issue, please do contact me to discuss alternatives.
Where can I learn more about these things?
Steve and Connirae Andreas's book 'Heart of the Mind' is an excellent introduction to health-related NLP.