Life coaching or hypnotherapy? Can they work together?

In the labyrinth of mental health, you have plenty of choices and sometimes too many. Whether it is psychotherapy, counselling, life coaching, and hypnotherapy. Each offers a unique approach to navigating life's challenges and achieving personal growth. Understanding their differences is crucial to choosing the right modality for your personal development.


Whilst psychotherapy and counselling delves into the depths of an individual's past experiences, emotions, and traumas to facilitate healing and growth, it primarily focuses on resolving past issues that may be hindering present-day functioning. Through various therapeutic techniques such as cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT), psychodynamic therapy, and person-centred therapy, counsellors help clients gain insight into their emotions and behaviours, identify patterns, and develop coping strategies.

What is life coaching?

Life coaching is oriented towards the future, and it focuses on empowering individuals to set and achieve specific goals, whether personal or professional. Life coaches serve as guides and accountability partners, helping clients clarify their values, identify obstacles, and create action plans to realise their aspirations.

One popular coaching model is the GROW model, which stands for Goal, Reality, Options, and Will. Coaches use this framework to facilitate goal setting, assess current realities, explore options, and encourage commitment to change. Additionally, coaching styles can vary, including autocratic, where the coach provides direct guidance, democratic, involving collaborative decision-making, and holistic, considering all aspects of a client's life.

During coaching sessions, clients can expect structured discussions, goal-setting exercises, accountability checks, and practical strategies for overcoming challenges. Life coaching is beneficial for individuals seeking personal development, career advancement, work-life balance, and overall life satisfaction.

What is solution focused hypnotherapy?

Hypnotherapy operates at the intersection of past and future, with a unique emphasis on the subconscious mind. It utilises hypnosis, a state of focused attention and heightened suggestibility, to access the subconscious and facilitate positive changes in thoughts, feelings, and behaviours. Unlike common misconceptions, hypnosis is not about losing control but rather accessing the subconscious to create change.

In particular hypnotherapy focuses on identifying the root cause of an issue or condition whilst creating solutions rather than dwelling on problems. Through trance induction and therapeutic suggestions, hypnotherapists help clients envision and internalise positive outcomes, reframe limiting beliefs, and cultivate inner resources for change.

During hypnotherapy sessions, clients experience deep relaxation and heightened receptivity to therapeutic suggestions. They may explore imagery, metaphor, and visualisation to tap into their subconscious resources and reprogram ingrained patterns.

Hypnotherapy sessions typically begin with a discussion of the client's objectives and any relevant history or experiences. The hypnotherapist then guides the client into a state of deep relaxation, inducing a trance state conducive to therapeutic suggestion.

During trance, clients may experience heightened focus, imagery, and suggestibility, allowing them to access their subconscious mind more readily. The hypnotherapist delivers tailored suggestions and imagery aligned with the client's goals, fostering positive changes at a deep-seated level. Sessions may conclude with debriefing, reflection, and homework assignments to reinforce progress outside of therapy.

Solution-focused hypnotherapy is effective for various issues and conditions such as:

  • anxiety disorders
  • phobias and irrational fears
  • stress management
  • depression
  • trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • insomnia and sleep disorders
  • smoking cessation
  • weight management
  • chronic pain management
  • performance anxiety (public speaking)
  • obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • self-esteem and confidence issues
  • relationship issues and communication skills
  • grief and loss
  • motivation and goal achievement
  • substance abuse and addiction
  • sexual dysfunction
  • skin conditions (e.g. eczema, psoriasis) with psychological components
  • chronic illness management and coping strategies
  • memory enhancement 

What are the similarities between life coaching and hypnotherapy?

While life coaching and hypnotherapy have distinct approaches, they share common ground in promoting personal growth and well-being. Both emphasise goal setting, empowerment, and positive change. They aim to enhance self-awareness, resilience, and resourcefulness, albeit through different techniques and modalities.

While both life coaching and hypnotherapy offer valuable tools for personal development and change, certain conditions may be more suitable for one modality over the other. Hypnotherapy is particularly effective for issues rooted in subconscious patterns and beliefs, such as phobias, habits, and trauma-related symptoms. Its ability to access the subconscious mind allows for profound and lasting transformations.

On the other hand, life coaching excels in areas where goal setting, accountability, and action planning are paramount, such as career transitions, relationship goals, and lifestyle changes. However, life coaching may have limitations in addressing deep-seated psychological issues or trauma that require therapeutic intervention.

When it comes to the client-practitioner relationship both hypnotherapists and life coaches emphasise empathy, respect, non-judgmental support, active listening and questioning to support their clients in clarifying their goals, overcoming obstacles, and acting towards their desired outcomes.

The power subconscious mind: The key differentiator between hypnotherapy and life coaching

Working on a subconscious level can be instrumental in facilitating more profound and enduring change. Our subconscious mind houses deeply ingrained beliefs, habits, and emotions that shape our thoughts and behaviours. By accessing this realm through hypnotherapy, individuals can unlock hidden potentials, overcome obstacles, and cultivate resilience.

While both modalities can address a wide range of issues, certain conditions may be more appropriate for one modality over the other. Hypnotherapy is particularly effective for addressing phobias, anxiety disorders, and trauma-related symptoms, as it allows therapists to access and reprogram deeply ingrained patterns in the subconscious mind. However, it may not be suitable for individuals with certain mental health conditions or those who are resistant to hypnosis.

Additionally, integrating life coaching and hypnotherapy can leverage the strengths of both modalities, offering a comprehensive approach to personal growth and transformation. Life coaching provides structure, accountability, and goal setting, while hypnotherapy delves into the subconscious to address underlying barriers and catalyse change from within.

Working on a subconscious level is however particularly impactful in addressing entrenched habits, phobias, and self-limiting beliefs that may resist conscious efforts at change. Through hypnotherapy, clients can rewire their neural pathways, cultivate new perspectives, and unlock their full potential for growth and transformation.

Nevertheless, combining hypnosis and lucid dreaming can be very powerful but if you prefer a therapy that involves your body such as Hypno-EMDR, this can be a very good alternative.

Although each modality has its strengths and limitations, integrating both modalities can offer a holistic approach to personal development with a unique pathway to well-being. Therefore, working with a hypnotherapist who has learned life coaching techniques is likely to facilitate the process of your transformation.

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

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Written by N. Verdickt, Hypno-EMDR, Lucid Dream, Kinesiology & Family Constellation
London SE14 & W11

N. Verdickt is a body & mind Therapist specialised in Hypnotherapy, EMDR, Lucid Dreaming, African Constellation and Kinesiology. As a critical thinker, he also produced thought provoking content that integrates his knowledge in psychology and philosophy. Follow him on Substack

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