How to overcome nerves before hypnosis

It is always interesting when clients or referred patients approach my practice with the thought that hypnosis makes them nervous. The idea that they want the treatment for the issue that is the presenting problem, may be viewed as a little ironic – don’t you think? But rest assured feeling nervous is common.


There are now a whole host of treatments available that can help soothe the nerves before approaching a therapist to assist. Even though hypnosis has proved to be one of the most promising methods that have managed to have a meaningful impact on treating such ailments of nervousness, it has also substantiated to be the most beneficial.

What is the best way to overcome nerves and stay calm?

One of the best ways to manage nervousness is by choosing the right therapist. After all, half the reason a client or referred patient worries is because of the concern they have with the help they will get. Talking to, having a connection with and investigating who would be best for you is significant.

I know that remaining calm during a hypnosis session sometimes is a challenge. For this reason, it is vital to understand hypnosis and the entire premise that one has to be in a calm, mental state.

Those who feel like they are in a trance-like state are usually suggestible candidates and are effortlessly regressed. The reason is that some people can tune out of the worries and concerns that commonly keep them in check. While others might experience the same feeling as they would while watching a movie: as you get engrossed in the plot, all other concerns about, for instance, work, family and life in generally fades away.

Feeling nervous is entirely natural.

For some, the uneasy sensation is the norm. I can recall the first time I had my very first session and applied the techniques I learnt over the years to keep clients or referred patients calm. I believe I recited a meditative mindfulness coaching session where I brought the referred patient to be in the present and reflected on their senses while breathing in-depth and focussing on each breath.

However, everything takes practice, but there are several techniques one can adopt that may work more effectively so it is important to explore these.

Client and hypnotherapist

How to stay calm during hypnosis

To get you started, here are five practical tips to help you stay calm during a hypnosis session:

Tip one

Focus on the words - The most influential and meaningful aspect we all possess is our words. So it is imperative to concentrate on the words that are spoken to you by your therapist. It is otherwise so easy for the mind to lose concentration and drift off into a daydream state before the session starts and this could be unrelated to why you are present with your therapist in the first place. That is is why choosing a therapist you connect with is so meaningful.

Tip two

Trust your therapist - I know it is tempting to believe that the therapist does not understand what he or she is doing. Leave the therapist to take the lead and try your very best not to over analyse the instructions or suggestions given to you by the therapist. Build rapport, trust and connect, these are imperative.

By listening to the therapist, it will assist you in keeping calm. That calmness and the relaxed state will help you to slip into hypnosis comfortably and effortlessly. Practice beforehand to remove distractions - setting objectives will also encourage the process.

Tip three

Choose the right breathing technique - Many advise on different breathing techniques. Research into basic physiology and into the effects of applying breath-control methods lends credit to the value of monitoring and regulating how we inhale and exhale effectively. Again, this is something some find themselves losing focus on during the hypnosis session.

It is essential to be aware of breathing techniques that help keep you calm. Every relaxation, calming and meditation method relies on breathing, which may be the lowest common denominator in all the approaches to soothing the body and mind.  Finding the best one for you takes rehearsal.

Tip four

Be patient – I know this is easier said than done. Although it may be difficult to understand, gradually you may become more comfortable with your therapist. This process may take a few weeks or even months, but if the relationship between you and your therapist is a good fit, it becomes easier to open up as time goes on.

Alternatively, if you are in short-term therapy, or if there is a disconnect between you and your therapist, giving it more time may not make sense. Find someone new.

Woman practising breathing technique

Tip five

Resist distractions - If you have had a disastrous day or things are not happening in your favour, then it is normal for your mind to be in an overthinking mode. If this happens and you are repeatedly disturbing your thought process, then you will need to let go of that stressful moment in your day, by deflecting your mind.

It is tricky to continue to be calm during the hypnosis session and therefore be less likely to assimilate the positive suggestion given during the session. As a result, this means that the hypnosis relinquishes its effectiveness. You can even clarify with the therapist whether there is any likelihood of distractions during the session or arrange for further guidance on how to be present and mindful of what you are experiencing.

Understandably, we have all at some point, had moments where we cannot rid ourself of feeling nervous. The best way forward is if you reframe your thoughts about feeling bad and focus on an exercise such as breathing to help reframe the mind.

For instance, if you experience your tummy churning and your head spinning with overthinking negative ideas before your session, then learn to perhaps turn those over to focus on being grateful. You could try to concentrate on what is going well for you, or direct your attention on the prosperity that you have in your life, for example, the idea that you can get help through hypnosis.

A skilled hypnotherapist will tell you that proper preparation before your hypnosis session is key to remaining calm and relaxed. This in result will lead to a more satisfying and successful hypnosis session and we all know if you start on the right foot, it keeps the momentum going.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author. All articles published on Hypnotherapy Directory are reviewed by our editorial team.

Share this article with a friend
London, E1 7QR
Written by Dr Belynder Walia, Psychotherapist, Clinical Hypnotherapist, Anxiety Expert
London, E1 7QR

Belynder Walia is a Psychotherapist and Clinical Hypnotherapist recognised by the British Psychological Society and the International Council of Psychotherapists. She is driven by her personal history of trauma to help others master their mindset. It is her mission to help others both heal trauma through PTG and prevent the impact of it.

Show comments

Find a hypnotherapist dealing with Anxiety

All therapists are verified professionals

All therapists are verified professionals