What is the Difference between Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy


Hypnosis – Mind in autopilot mode

When we go about the daily business of life our minds are mostly in autopilot mode unless, of course, we need to pay attention to what we are doing in, which case the mind automatically goes into manual mode. The reason the mind goes into manual mode is because when we are learning something new or if we are in danger our subconscious does not have a program, it can run, to deal with it.

When we are driving our subconscious plays the “drive” program which enables us to drive safely from from one place to another without being consciously aware of the journey. If, however, anything untoward happens during the journey that requires our conscious attention the mind spontaneously comes out of autopilot and goes into manual mode. Once we have done something often enough the subconscious creates a program which it stores for us and which it automatically plays every time we do it. This is the reason we find it difficult to be always fully conscious in the present moment.

We are all aware that we switch between ‘autopilot ‘ and ‘manual’ mode many times during our waking day and accept it as natural. What many people are not aware of, however, is that ‘autopilot’ mode is Hypnosis! We can learn to deliberately enter the Hypnosis mode of mind in order to suspend the conscious mind and deal with problems of an emotional or psychological nature. The work done at the subconscious level while a person is in this autopilot mode is Hypnotherapy.

Hypnosis is a state of mind marked by a feeling of relaxation. When driving and not being aware of the journey we are in hypnosis, feeling relaxed but  not unconscious. If we were unconscious we would crash so we can conclude that in the hypnotic state we are aware but not critically aware. Hypnosis is that state of mind we enter when we do not need to analyse or be critically conscious of whatever task we are involved in. In hypnosis the mind is in autopilot and the only way this can happen is when it feels safe.

Suggestion Therapy

While in the relaxed state of hypnosis the therapist gives the client the suggestions for change which they have both agreed upon. The suggestions given by the hypnotherapist will be worded in a way that makes them easily accepted  so that a program is created by the subconscious to implement the new behaviour requested by the client. Once the suggestions are accepted the old behaviour program is replaced in the subconscious by the new program and spontaneously triggered in place of the old undesirable behaviour. This is called Suggestion Therapy and is a very effective way to change a habit, like smoking. Suggestion Therapy is only as effective as the suggestions given to the client and the all important rapport between client and therapist.

Though this might seem like a simple procedure it is best to seek the services of a qualified therapist in this field who has training in the art of developing effective suggestions that are exactly in keeping with the goals of the client. The most effective suggestions are short, worded in simple language that a child could understand and always positively phrased e.g. “Every day in every way I am getting better and better.”

Analytical Hypnotherapy is Hypno-Psychotherapy

Suggestion Therapy is recommended when the presenting symptoms of the client do not have an underlying emotional root cause. When there is an emotional root cause for the condition then Analytical Hypnotherapy or in other words Hypno-Psychotherapy is the recommended treatment. Using Suggestion Therapy in these cases would be like putting a band aid over an open deep wound.

Hypno-Psychotherapy or Analytical Hypnotherapy, uses a combination of hypnosis to to allow access to the subconscious and Psychotherapy to uncover and resolve the emotional root cause of the condition. As this is primarily a talking therapy each client relaxes into the level of hypnosis that allows them to communicate with the therapist. The depth of hypnosis is not important as long as the client feels relaxed, safe and is willing to cooperate with the process. Each client finds the level of relaxation that suits them best and therapy proceeds naturally at the rate set by the client who is always in charge.

During Hypno-Psychotherapy the client is encouraged to report whatever emerges, no matter how ridiculous, shameful, embarrassing, shocking, trivial or mundane it appears to the client. Once the client adheres to this the all important trust with the subconscious is developed and progress inevitable. It is not the therapist’s job to judge the client, tell clients what is best for them or come to conclusions for the client. Analytical Hypnotherapy is a very personal process unique to the individual which ultimately ends in the client having the confidence to trust in their own inner source of wisdom rather than depending on an external authority figure for validation. It is for this reason that only the services of a fully qualified therapist be sought.

It is important that the client be involved in the choosing of suitable suggestions if Suggestion Therapy is the chosen treatment. Where Analytical Hypnotherapy is concerned then it is important that it is the client doing the talking and the therapist doing the listening.

Setanta Hypnotherapy Clinic in Peel, Isle of Man, is the Private Practice of  Xavier and Mary Nathan

At Setanta Hypnotherapy Clinic in Peel we offer Suggestion Therapy or Hypno-Psychotherapy and it is during the free initial consultation that we make an assessment and recommend the most suitable treatment. You also have the choice to be treated by a male or female therapist so when you call to make a free initial consultation be sure to make your preference known.

Video by Xavier and Mary Nathan explaining Hypno-Psychotherapy

Links to related Articles

Hypnotherapy: What you Should Expect Resistance in Hypno-Psychotherapy

The Power of Suggestion

Hypno-Psychotherapy is another name for Analytical Hypnotherapy

Suggestion Therapy


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