As a psychotherapeutic treatment, hypnotherapy doesn’t always receive the attention it deserves. In many ways, you might even consider it as a last-ditch effort. But there are a lot of benefits to be had from a course of hypnotherapy, especially for depression. It’s been said there is never an absolute way of achieving your goals. And it’s a truism that’s especially valid within psychotherapy. If you’ve already tried other modes of talk therapy and medication with marginal success, hypnotherapy could be the answer to resolving your depression.
Although it is by definition a talk-based modality, hypnosis differs from other approaches in that it bypasses your conscious mind works directly with your subconscious. The nature of all psychotherapy is to change and improve your mental programming. The idea is to shift your mindset from one rooted in negativity to one that is of a positive influence.
When you engage in talk therapies, such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), or Psychodynamic Therapy, you’re trying to affect the subconscious mind through the conscious. There is nothing wrong with either of these approaches, and both have given people great results the world over. But with hypnotherapy, you bypass this additional layer. You’re able to have a direct effect on the subconscious in real-time with the help of your Therapist. Since it is this part of you that holds all of your memories, belief structures and behavioural responses, this is the aspect you want to focus on.
However, if you’re concerned about losing yourself during hypnosis – don’t be. Clinical hypnotherapy is nothing like the stage variety practised on TV for comedy and social experiments. There is no trickery or deception involved. It’s a very relaxing and tranquil experience.
Using hypnosis in a therapeutic setting allows you to retrain your mind. By identifying the root cause of your depression, you can then create more constructive attitudes around those areas of your life. Depression is the result of a multitude of factors from relationship issues, low self-esteem, sudden life changes and even addiction. In fact, it’s been reported that around one-third of addicts are clinically depressed. Hypnosis can help you address all these issues and by doing so, lessen and even relieve you of your depression.
Although hypnotherapy has been practised for hundreds of years, the modern study of it only began in the 1920s. And it wasn’t until the 1970s that scientists started to take it seriously as a viable means of treating mental health conditions. Because of that, the quantity of available research doesn’t quite reflect its effectiveness. Fortunately, the material that has been published provides some compelling evidence.
A 1995 study had two control groups – one receiving just CBT with the other receiving CBT and hypnosis. After the investigation had concluded, it was found 75% of those who received both hypnosis and CBT experienced a greater improvement in their condition those who only received CBT.
For a long time, hypnotherapy has been overlooked as a therapeutic option for those with mental illness. But in many ways, it is the obvious solution for treating conditions that have their roots in the subconscious. It offers a direct route to changing the way you think and perceive yourself. And for that reason, you might want to consider it your first option rather than your last resort.
About the author:
Dr Becky Spelman PhD is a leading UK Psychologist who’s had great success helping her clients manage and overcome a multitude of mental illnesses.
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