Hypnosis has been overly stereotyped for years. Unfortunately, that has given many people a false perception of what it is and how it can help with a variety of conditions. More recently, however, hypnotherapy has started to gain popularity. More people see the positive effects it can have on everything from addictions to anxiety. Of course, there are still skeptics. Does hypnotherapy really work for anxiety? If so, how? Most importantly, what can you expect if you decide to see a hypnotherapist?
The “Hype” Behind Hypnosis
While hypnosis is becoming more popular, it’s important to recognize that it’s not a gimmick. When it comes to treating anxiety, there’s no shortage of options. From traditional talk therapy to prescription medications, there’s a management strategy out there for everyone.
However, because anxiety is the most common mental health condition in the world, there isn’t a “one size fits all” treatment program. It’s important that everyone finds what works for them.
Whether you’ve tried other treatments in the past or you’re looking for something different, don’t let the sudden popularity of hypnotherapy deter you from thinking it’s legitimate.
How Hypnotherapy Works for Anxiety
Unlike what movies and television shows might lead you to believe, you’re fully awake during a hypnotherapy session. However, you’re in a deeply relaxed state, guided by your therapist. It’s when you’re in that state that the therapist will work with you to overcome your feelings of anxiety. You’re more open to suggestions, so your therapist can guide you to overcome certain triggers or learn how to better manage the root of your worries.
That kind of relaxation will also reduce your stress levels, and that’s something that stays with you well after the session is over. Research has shown that hypnosis can actually change certain areas of your brain associated with emotional control.
When you’re able to have more control over your emotions, you’re less likely to let fear and worry take over. It’s not uncommon for people with performance anxiety to use hypnotherapy to stay calm and collected before they have to present themselves in front of others. Some people even use hypnosis to overcome very specific types of anxiety.
Finally, hypnotherapy can help to boost your confidence and self-esteem. Anxiety often makes people feel weak. That makes it easy for it to “take over” your thoughts and your life. When you have more confidence in yourself, you’ll be more likely to fight back against the negative thoughts trying to control your every move.
What to Expect
Because there are so many misconceptions about hypnosis, it’s a good idea to know what to expect from a typical session. In most cases, your therapist will want to learn more about things like family history, when your anxiety started, and things that trigger it. The more information you’re able to give, the more effective your sessions can be.
While your anxiety won’t disappear after one hypnosis session, some people do feel differently right away. You might notice that you’re more relaxed and less stressed. You’ll build upon that with every session until the things that once caused you to feel anxious and afraid don’t seem so overwhelming anymore. Typically, this takes about 6-8 sessions, though it could require more depending on your level of anxiety.
If you’re interested in learning more about how hypnotherapy can help your anxiety, don’t hesitate to reach out. I’m happy to answer any questions you might have and help you set up an appointment soon. Anxiety doesn’t have to control your life forever. If you’re ready to try something different to manage your anxious thoughts, hypnosis could be for you.