Using your Natural Vision
Hypnotherapy is both a scientific and a creative approach to healing. It uses counselling techniques, cognitive behavioural techniques, stories, hypnosis, and metaphors and even as the great therapist Milton Erickson used the process of simply sitting outside in nature.
In can be understood, therefore, that there are many ways to connect and work more positively with your unconscious mind. These positive ways enable and allow access to that personal and ‘inner guidance system’, which is that bit of us that just seems to know best!
A previous article described the means for bypassing the defences of the conscious mind (which often falsely argues that the inner guidance system ‘does not know best!’) in order to move forward in your life in ways that are consistent and positive towards your goals. It is all about an interpersonal development and building a positive vision for and of yourself as much as it is addressing the negative patterns that stop and trap you.
As well as helping you address those negative patterns quickly, using hypnotherapy’s positive ways, those techniques can be (and have been throughout the ages) used to help you seek out that positive vision of you in your future.
A Vision Quest is a gift of special natural time to yourself, given at a point when you may wish gain clarity in your life or to help you through changes and life’s transitions. This might be about graduation, career, relationships, marriage, a lost loved one or retirement. In fact any point of transition from the old to the new way may be experienced in a painful and difficult way.
Sometimes many of just find that we lack direction in their lives, lack motivation or simply feel lost.
From the moment you apply and are accepted on to the Vision Quest you will be coached by a guide, an experienced therapist, towards using the time and space during and up to the closing of the process, in order to mark that change or transition, gain direction and then begin to plan new action for new, more positive ways of life. This may include ways for working with your physical system, emotional system or for appraising and renewing all of the different kinds of relationships you have in your life. This is what therapy is about.
Then, once accepted, on the first day of the quest you will meet with your facilitator and guide who will lead you through a time of reflection and clarification. You will then be invited to find a place in nature, close enough by to be connected and safe, but far enough to be with yourself and to allow your own internal natural system to be listened to. It is this inward direction of attention and quietening down of external, unnatural stimuli that gently introduce what might be called the trance state, in which your inner guidance system begins to communicate with you.
Some describe this as their Inner Guide, some as Spirit and some as Intuition. The description is less important than the process of connecting and communicating with that aspect of you that knows better, if not best. It is about quietening your body that wonderfully, ordinarily very active process known as your nervous system, which is normally the first aspect of you to real feel the need for change, but is rarely properly listened to.
That need for change is often marked by some kind of event, perhaps similar to some of those listed in paragraph above, in which a person can feel separated, cut off or isolated. Effective change management is itself a process initially all about letting go of the old (often called severance). Then it is about enduring the pain of being isolated (known as the threshold before the change) and finally into accepting the change and integrating new positive ways into your life (known as incorporation).
This is the process of understanding the patterns of behaviour that your mind so efficiently, often awkwardly, adopts and uses to respond to change, but which often create more difficulties than they solve. The goal is to seek out and apply new, more positive ways and patterns to the relationships in our lives.
The Vision Quest is both a metaphor for this process and a means, if done with the right intention and attention (of which the Vision Quest process will teach more), of potentially shortening the transitions duration. Therefore once the place in nature has been chosen, you return to the facilitating guide and the process of severance from the old continues. At the appropriate time you will be invited to go out, into your place in nature and spend some time alone (how long is not as relevant as the process) and quietly, until such time as it is right to return, where you will be welcomed, celebrated and supported in re-incorporating your new insights and learning. That can create new relationships, with others and including with you.
The Vision Quest is an old custom, updated and now used in and from these lands; Celtic tribes had their ways and used in Native American and other aboriginal traditions. Those ways are powerful and whilst in the modern era it is important we acknowledge those ways, we can also find our contemporary ways of meeting the work equally. You may choose to use the modern powerful tool of the internet to find out more. This article seeks to raise your awareness to the value of working through the Vision Quest process; quietening the body and the neurology, identifying the patterns of the mind and re-incorporating new ways or working and creating relationships.
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James BrannanNovember 29th, 2016