The Neuroscience Behind Hypnosis

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How Well Do You Know Your Emotions

  • Are you someone who worries about things?
  • Do you replay sad thoughts inside your head? 
  • Can you remember with nostalgia and comfort the way your mother tucked you into bed?
  • Or are you still fuming about someone’s bad driving on the way to work or the row that you had yesterday?

We are emotional beings, which means that all experiences and thoughts also come with an accompanying emotional affect. It is quite natural for people to feel a full range of negative and positive emotions. But no feeling is intrinsically good or bad and feeling rage or hate only means that you are also capable of experiencing love and compassion. Trouble starts however when we hang onto unhealthy emotions, assume that they define us, obsess about them or repress the painful ones.


The consequence can lead to a range of psychological disorders and sometimes physical illnesses.
Most people who visit a clinical hypnotherapist describe themselves as overwhelmed or struggling with negative emotions. They are often fearful, anxious and feel unhappy or unable to cope. Research now explains that negative emotions activate a brain region called the amygdala which plays a role in causing fear and anxiety. Over-stimulation of this region can lead to poor emotional resilience, psychological disorders, a general sense of ill-health, and the inability to think clearly.

The Perfect Emotional Coach

Talking to a clinical hypnotherapist activates different areas of the brain designed to help the client develop self-awareness, self-management, and a better understanding of their social and personal relationships. These resources will help the client feel more confident as they work through their challenges.
Simply entering the state of clinical hypnosis can have a profound effect on emotional health. Research shows that people who regularly meditate or practice self-hypnosis activate the ventral striatum which is associated with decision making and triggers reward centres located deep in the brain. The common therapeutic suggestions used by clinical hypnotherapists “…and your mind will naturally clear allowing you to have better self-control…” and … You begin to feel a growing sense of well-being…” appears to be firmly rooted in neuroscience.

Better Than Magic

Clinical hypnotherapy is a drug-free approach that works by teaching the client how to trigger their own relaxation response. This simple but powerful technique immediately empowers the client by reducing the activity in the amygdala creating a sense of calm and almost instant relief to the emotional turmoil.
Just going into clinical hypnosis creates the feeling of physical and mental well-being. The session usually lasts between 30 to 40 minutes creating an opportunity for brain rewiring and relearning. Clients report feeling better after one session. Studies demonstrate that there is a link between these upbeat mental states and improved health benefits, which include lowered blood pressure, reduced risk of heart disease, healthier weight, better blood sugar levels, and longer life.

Emotional Intelligence Explained

People think that emotions just happen. But research suggests that we do have control over our feelings and the way that they affect us. The skill comes from learning to listen or experience what our feelings are communicating without interpreting the meaning.Positive emotions expand our awareness and receptivity to new ideas. They also prime the mind to notice things that will help us to succeed. But negative emotions also have a role. They serve as a guide for identifying the experiences we do not enjoy. The skill comes from not focusing on them.
Clinical hypnotherapy helps you establish a centre of balance so that you can choose your responses and navigate more easily towards the values and outcomes that you desire.

Therapy At Work

The role of therapy is expanding. The impact of the covid-19 saw huge increases as people sought help for anxiety disorders, depression, symptoms such as insomnia, obesity, stress and help to find meaning again after living with grief, loss, social isolation, and a topsy turvy world.
There is also an emerging role for mental wellbeing in the workplace. Regular use of relaxation techniques or self-hypnosis enhances empathy towards co-workers, creates self-awareness and better self-regulations. Studies also show a direct correlation between emotional intelligence and career success, job performance, and stronger mental health.

Could You Be A Clinical Hypnotherapist?

It takes a special person to become a clinical hypnotherapist. The most important quality is the desire to help others, followed closely by the ability to listen to someone’s problems without judgment. You will probably already be someone to whom people confide.
Clinical hypnotherapists work on many levels including the unconscious mind, so a fascination with how the mind works and a healthy curiosity about your own emotions is a great place to start. 

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