Cognitive hypnotherapy, what is it and how can it help?
Cognitive hypnotherapy is a relatively young approach that combines techniques from a variety of available therapies. The core of cognitive hypnotherapy is NLP and hypnosis, but that is where it all just starts. Within cognitive hypnotherapy you can also find a practical use of transactional analysis or task-centred approach where a client is asked to perform tasks in between the sessions. Cognitive hypnotherapists search for capabilities and abilities already available to the client developing them further which can make progress of therapy quicker.
Cognitive hypnotherapy is quite close to psychodynamic counselling but is much more open in ways that therapists work with the subconscious. Its main theory is that trance is an everyday state and therefore daydreaming and playing scenarios in our mind can be used as means to resolving a problem. It utilises the client’s imagination, memories, beliefs and reasonings, and links all these together, creating new meanings and links within the brain.
One of the main ideas of cognitive hypnotherapy is that all behaviours that we do are done to protect us. Our brain’s main goal is to keep us safe, unfortunately, to achieve this it can produce fears, anxieties, phobias and negative thoughts to keep us away from potential ‘thread’.
Cognitive hypnotherapists search for patterns within the client’s issue and try to spot patterns within the client’s behaviour and speech and change one piece of information within the pattern to create a new way of thinking or behaving. Cognitive hypnotherapy uses a butterfly effect as an example of continuous change that is started when one piece within the issue is shifted.
The major belief of cognitive hypnotherapy, that goes against long-held belief in mainstream psychology and psychiatry, is that it can be harmful going through past memories asking a client to describe what happened and how they feel about it. Simply evoking a memory without shifting it, meaning it only strengthens the problem.
Another very refreshing idea of cognitive hypnotherapy is that the client is always an individual with a unique problem. This means that every client is treated without any comparison to a previous client. Cognitive hypnotherapy, in essence, sees the therapist as a guide to the client, who helps the client to use their own resources to terminate or shift the issues.
Cognitive hypnotherapists can differ from one another because of the vast possibilities that this form of therapy offers. It is a good thing because each therapist, through experience, finds what they are good at. They can explore and target an area of their personal interest so, within a pool of cognitive hypnotherapists, there is a variety of therapists with different niches and different personalities that clients can choose from.
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