How to select a hypnotherapist that’s right for you
Ok, so you want to improve something in your life and hypnotherapy is often a good and effective way to make changes. Now which hypnotherapist? It’s advisable to do a bit of research before you book an appointment, a logical step when selecting any professional, the nearest or first hypnotherapist listed on Google may not be the best one for you.
Remember, what it is about. You want to change something in your life. Hypnotherapy works by you responding to suggestions made by the therapist while you are relaxed, allowing change to take place. So what should you consider?
Firstly, training and qualifications: There’s a wide range of hypnotherapy training programmes from online courses through to Diploma and post-graduate Master’s courses which take several years to complete. Hypnotherapists should also regularly update their skills, this continuous professional development with support from clinical supervision helps ensure good practice.
Therapists are generally open about their training and any specific extra courses they have taken. Some may show diplomas and certificates in their office. Most hypnotherapists will also be registered with one of the professional organisations, e.g. the British Society of Clinical Hypnosis (BSCH), General Hypnotherapy Register (GHR), CNHC etc., members of such organisations have to reach standards of qualification and ongoing CPD requirements to maintain annual registration. Some online directories, including this one, will only list hypnotherapists who fulfil specific training and registration criteria.
If your problem is more specialised you may want to see someone with specific training and an additional relevant qualification; e.g. Virtual Gastric Band or medical problems. Remember that the amount of time and training a therapist has taken is an indication of how seriously they take their professional service and they’ve made an investment in terms of their time and expense to help you.
Secondly experience and background: A therapist who has successfully treated people with similar problems to yours may have a better understanding and have developed techniques that work well in similar cases, some may specialise in certain conditions. Many hypnotherapists have previously worked in other areas of life, finding someone who can readily understand either you or your situation may be a better therapist for you at this time. Alternatively a fresh and different perspective can be useful too.
Recommendations: Also have a part to play, whether from people known to us or not. Today, access to reviews helps us choose services or purchases and there is some value in the opinions of others - you may be able to find this information online or ask. Some previous clients are very willing to endorse a therapist when they have benefitted from a session.
The person: Talking to the therapist him or herself can help, it seems logical to find a therapist with whom you feel comfortable, otherwise it may limit how you accept suggestions and affect the outcome. However, remember that this is a professional relationship and although you want to feel comfortable, the therapist is not going to become your best friend; in fact some therapy may be challenging, simply because in wanting a change, you want to move forward. Often this involves taking you out of your old comfort zone and the rut and into a better life.
Location and cost: This can influence your choice. It’s likely that you will have a limit in time and distance you want to travel and how much you can afford. Some hypnotherapists can work via a Skype link, so location may be less important but there is value in a face to face appointment, especially initially. Most hypnotherapists will have details about costs available on their publicity and website or, if not, they should be able to discuss costs with you if you ask. I would be wary if they seem evasive about charges; like any service, prices should be clear whether this is by hour or session. However you may be truthfully told that they cannot definitely tell how many sessions will be needed. We are all individuals and how fast we make a change is individual too. Many clients find that some of their therapy happens between appointments, and often therapists will teach self-hypnosis or give you a recording on CD or MP3 allowing you to maintain your treatment between appointments. Sometimes this will be included in costs or there may be an additional fee if the recording is made specifically for you.
The next step: Having settled on the most suitable therapist for you, you'll want to contact them and start to experience the changes you want.
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