Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Current Book List Needed

By request, here is the link to the Amazon Wishlist for the books needed for the hypnotherapy courseIf you would like to help out by purchasing one of these books, please feel free!  I do have a Kindle (an old one) and can access my Kindle books on my phone as well.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds in Hypnosis

Richard Nongard created a relaxation self-hypnosis video using the lyrics of "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" by The Beatles!  This is awesome!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Subconscious Choices - Disease

Why do people subconsciously choose to be sick?  I am not talking about the occasional cold, even though I do believe it is possible to avoid those, too.  Nor am I addressing the question of why people get sick.  I am referring to people who choose to embrace recurring physical or mental ailments as just a part of life they have to accept instead of rejecting the affliction!  Diet, activities, and lifestyle* have a dramatic impact on our health, of course.  What so many people seem to be ignoring is the impact our mind has on our health!

When I was actively practicing Reiki and dabbling in other forms of alternative therapy, one of the things that frustrated me the most was completely alleviating the symptoms with a treatment only to hear the person say, “Well, it feels better now, but it will be back.”  Individuals varied their phrasing, of course, but they were all essentially saying that they refuse to let the ailment go.  They psychologically cling to illness for some reason!  Even I have been guilty of this.  Every time I catch myself doing it, though, I try to change it.

Being the analytical person I am, I began researching why people would choose to cling to their illness, ailment, disability, shortcomings, et cetera, and I started with the people I treated who refused to let go of their disease (I am going to use this term through the rest of this post, because every symptom or ailment reflects dis-ease in the natural flow of the body).  I discovered a simple list of 3 reasons why people would subconsciously choose to keep their disease.  Some individuals choose their disease for only one reason, while others may have all 3 reasons.  These 3 reasons are quite broad because each person has their own experiences.  I have yet to find a personal reason that does not fit into one of these categories.  Let’s take a look at the subconscious reasons for accepting disease.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Full Spectrum and more!

The more I read about hypnosis, the more I am impressed with the broad spectrum of ailments to be helped significantly by hypnosis.  Not only has hypnosis been shown to significantly improve success rates with smoking cessation and weight loss or other eating habits, studies have shown that hypnosis is also wonderful for treating chronic pain and post-operative discomforts, even promoting healing at a faster rate.

When I tell people that I want to be a hypnotherapist, half of them want help with smoking cessation, while the other half make references to helping buried memories resurface.  Smoking cessation is something I would like to offer others.  I do not really want to dig around in another person's head, though, trying to bring all of their skeletons out of the closet.  If a specific memory is triggering issues for a client, the emotional perception of that memory can be changed without having to fully relive the pain.  Trying to find the source of a fear or issue is one thing, but our minds buried that memory for a reason!  It is my understanding that substantial healing can be made without it being painful, and that is my goal.  The memory may have to come into the light for a moment, but I do not believe that the repressed memories need to come fully to the surface in order for one to make peace with that memory.

I want to help people heal on all levels: physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual.  I believe hypnotherapy is a powerful tool to help people heal themselves on all of these levels, not just one.  I cannot take the credit for healing them because the healing actually comes from within themselves.  I can only claim to inspire a healing environment. 

For those of you who love statistics, check out this list of studies concluding the effectiveness of hypnosis treatments for various ailments, including smoking, weight loss, drug habits, pain management, migraines, anxiety, and even healing broken bones!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Changing Routes

When I asked the Universe to guide me in finding a way to fulfill one of my major life purposes while supporting my family instead of working a mundane job that has nothing to do with that purpose, hypnotherapy was the very clear answer.  I soon discovered that there are many options available for practical training in hypnosis.  Upon discovering that there is a class locally starting in January, I became extremely excited.  That seemed so easy!  I immediately set about trying to raise the funds for the class with my Indiegogo campaign, because as a single mom making half of what I made in Memphis, simply saving the money by January was an impossibility.  My budget is so tight that there is none left over!  I often do odd jobs or read palms once or twice a month just to help scrape by.

During the beginning stages of my campaign, I was contacted by several students of another hypnotherapy training course at HPTI.  This one is a year-long, distance-learning course that includes live weekends and an internship.  And this course is cheaper, even before the enrollment discount offered!  I was still really hesitant about switching.  After all, the NGH course is completed in a month and is done face-to-face, whereas the HPTI course means committing to a year and most of it is not face-to-face. 

I kept weighing pros and cons as well as asking the Universe for some sort of guidance and listening to my intuition.  What I wanted was the quick route!  However, what the Universe responded with was that the longer course would mean fewer struggles, stronger connections, and overall success.  I even had my best girl pull a few cards for me comparing them to see if she got the same answer I was getting!  Since she's in Denver and I haven't seen her in person in at least 3 years, there are fewer chances for me to influence the reading.  She was quite surprised as well at how strongly the cards were in favor of the longer course.

After sitting on the decision for a while longer, I decided to go with it.  One of my biggest hesitations was having to commit for a year when there are shorter courses available.  Not only do I tend to start projects and not finish them, specifically with craft projects, but committing for a year would mean potentially working at this job for another year, struggling to make ends meet and perfecting ways to deal with a difficult boss. 

Since the intuition was strongly in favor of the longer course even though I really wanted the shorter one, I am trusting that the Universe will open the way.  I am still running my Indiegogo campaign, which is at 13% ($400) for $3,000, but I really don't need the whole $3,000 for the HPTI course.  If I can raise 50% of the goal, I can pay for the main expenses at least.  Of course, if I can raise the whole amount, the additional funds will be used for travel for a couple of the live weekends (there are four of them throughout the year) and covering travel expenses and child care during my internship.

I am offering contribution perks at benchmarks ranging from $1 to $1,000, to be delivered either during the course or after receiving my certification.  Each and every contribution is tremendously appreciated!  And if you can't give anything, please at least help me get the word out by sending people to http://awakenthedream.net before my deadline of December 19th.

I hope everyone has a beautiful and blessed holiday season!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Can Hypnosis Really Help With Smoking Cessation?

In short, YES!

Several of my friends have asked me about using hypnosis to help them quit smoking, so I figured I would address it in a post.  

Smoking is more of a mental habit than it is a physical addiction.  Once you stop introducing nicotine into the body, it only takes 3 days for it to clear out!  Once the nicotine is out of your system, the only thing that makes you crave smoking is your mental habit.  Hypnosis can help ease the transition into becoming a non-smoker by helping you change your mental associations with smoking.  Smokers have positive associations with smoking, which makes it harder for them to want to quit, even though many of them know they should.

As a smoker*, here are some of the conversations I have with myself had regarding smoking:

I enjoy smoking!
Oh, really?  What do you enjoy about smoking?  The taste of burnt ashes?  Blech.  The smoky smell?  Stinky!

Smoking relaxes me!
No, it doesn't.  Breathing relaxes you.  Drawing on a cigarette promotes deep breathing, which naturally relaxes a person and reduces stress.  Nicotine is actually a stimulant!

Ok, so smoking perks me up!
Maybe, so, for a little while, but within 20 minutes of smoking a cigarette, your heart rate and blood pressure begin to return to normal as the nicotine begins to leave the brain.  You actually can perk yourself up higher for longer by taking a 5-minute brisk walk!  And if you breathe deep while doing so, you become perky AND relaxed!

But I'll gain weight if I quit!
People gain weight when they quit smoking because they're convinced they're depriving themselves of something, therefore they fill that deprivation with food, which is made more enjoyable by being able to taste again after quitting smoking.  If you change your mental association to where you're not depriving yourself of anything, instead you are giving yourself freedom and good health, you are less likely to gain weight!

I've tried quitting before, but I keep going back!  I don't want to fail again!
Thankfully, you didn't follow this approach when learning to walk or learning to talk!  You just haven't found the right method for you!  Most people try using willpower to quit smoking, but because they don't really want to quit, they don't commit to it forever.  They still have positive associations with being a smoker, so when they get stressed out, they fall back on the old crutch of smoking.  Some people also use some form of nicotine replacement therapy, such as nicotine gum or patches, in addendum to their willpower.  To me, this seems counter-intuitive since the withdrawal symptoms of nicotine itself really aren't that bad and only last 3 days!  The flu lasts longer than that and makes you feel WAY worse! 

Hypnosis helps by redirecting the mental associations with smoking, creating a positive mental environment to reinforce your desire to quit smoking.  Once you've stopped thinking of smoking as a positive, rewarding thing, smoking will no longer control you!  If you'd never lit that first cigarette, you would not be controlled by them now.  You can easily transition to a state of mind where they have no power over you, if you so choose.

Some people are afraid they will never be free from cigarettes, that the temptation will always be there.  Again, if you no longer have positive associations with smoking, then smoking will not be a temptation!

Hypnosis to quit smoking often only takes one session.  I've come across several hypnotherapists who offer free follow-up sessions to anyone still having difficulty, as long as the sessions are related to smoking cessation and associations.  I really like that idea and want to implement that into my practice. 

If you want me to help you quit smoking through hypnosis, support my campaign.  The Be Your Best perk is essentially buying one hypnotherapy session.  Once I become certified, if you book a session with me to quit smoking, I will offer free follow-up sessions to reinforce it.  To put it simply, as long as you truly want to quit, I will assist you for the price of one session!  (Remember that hypnotherapy cannot force you to do something that you truly do not want to do.)

*I am on my way to being a non-smoker.  I haven't taken the course yet, so I am relying on my studies on self-hypnosis to help me quit.  Two days ago, I started working on one aspect first - the illogical perspective that I enjoy smoking - because that's been my hang-up every time I've quit smoking.  As of today, every time I do smoke, I don't feel very well afterwards, and it makes me not want to smoke!  I can see myself stopping before my quit-date of December 1st, 2012!  I will keep you posted! (11/13/2012)

Friday, November 2, 2012

Why Hypnotherapy?

Since launching this campaign, a couple of people have asked, “Why hypnotherapy?” An excellent question deserves to be answered, so I shall start with explaining a bit about hypnosis and hypnotherapy and then explain why I am drawn to practicing it.

What is hypnosis? 

 Hypnosis is a trance-like state during which you have heightened focus, concentration, and inner absorption. Our minds naturally enter this state several times a day, although most of us just call it “zoning out.” We can also intentionally take ourselves into this state by using certain relaxation techniques or have someone else help guide us down. Being in that state allows our subconscious mind to absorb concepts more readily because we have occupied our conscious mind. Most people simply feel relaxed in this state, relaxed yet focused.

What is hypnotherapy? 

Hypnotherapy is, simply stated, therapy under hypnosis. By putting the conscious mind in a relaxed, natural state and allowing the subconscious mind to be open and receptive, the concepts a person wishes to accept are more easily absorbed into the mind. This form of therapy can be used to help with many different treatments, such as:
  • Eliminating undesirable habits such as smoking, drinking, nail biting, teeth grinding, gambling, etc. 
  • Releasing and managing stress, anxiety, panic, or depression (counseling is recommended in tandem) 
  • Controlling pain of all kinds 
  • Developing self-esteem and self-confidence 
  • Body image and adjustments (desired weight loss, weight gain, body shaping) 
  • Memory improvement and concentration (including exam preparation) 
  • Healthy management of emotions 
  • Increasing motivation 
  • Improving physical health 
  • Child birth preparation 
Can we do these things without hypnosis? Yes, we can. The power of the mind is practically limitless, and we actively use very little of our brains. Our conscious mind often slows the acceptance of concepts into the subconscious mind. By using hypnosis, we can reduce the amount of time it takes to make positive changes in our lives! I know that personally, I have a tendency to basically get in my own way. My conscious mind creates obstacles to keep me from my goals, often because of self-doubt or fear. When I use hypnosis, changes I choose to make come much more easily.

For pain management, hypnosis has been shown to be effective enough to take the place of pain-relieving medications in many situations, including child birth, dentistry, surgery, chemotherapy, and even burn victims. This is especially beneficial to people who are highly sensitive to pharmaceuticals, or even those of us who prefer to limit the amount of chemicals we introduce into our bodies.

Many people are concerned that a suggestion could be given to make them do something bad or completely against their nature. It is an accepted principle of hypnotism that no one can be forced to do something against their own ethical and moral principles. No hypnotist can convince a normal person to murder someone. Yes, a stage hypnotist can convince some people to do things they wouldn’t normally do, but if it was truly against their nature, the suggestion simply would not take.

Why do I want to be a hypnotherapist? 

I want to help people improve their physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual health, thus improving their quality of life. I believe we all have the power and potential to reach our goals with more ease than commonly experienced. We have the ability to alter our lives, our perceptions, our feelings, our habits, our physical bodies and much more, however many of us allow our minds to present obstacles to keep us from attaining our desires. Hypnotherapy is a tool that can help us let go of self-doubt, fear, pain*, grudges, and habits more easily than just using self-discipline alone. As a believer in providing people with tools they can easily use to naturally improve their quality of life, I believe in the power of this tool to help create positive changes in people’s lives quickly and easily.

My future goal is to open an alternative care clinic where the public can easily access more natural forms of medicine and healing, regardless of financial status. This clinic will be operated by a group of professionals who have dedicated themselves to helping people heal themselves in a natural way. Becoming a hypnotherapist is one of the first steps on my path to achieving that goal.

*Pain is the body’s natural way of letting us know that something is not right. Even with relieving the pain, the source of the problem should be treated. For example, if we eliminate the pain of a toothache through hypnotherapy, a visit to the dentist should still be on our priority list because while the pain is gone, the reason for the pain (such as a cavity or crack) is not.