My Experience of Hypnotherapy

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My second session was also my final session because I had already exceeded my objective of achieving 4 to 5 hours of uninterrupted sleep a night from the very first night.

Instead I was introduced to a technique called anchoring, which, with practice, enables you to tune in to a happy or relaxed state in times of stress, anger or excitement. I actually found this really difficult and so in the end it was introduced to me through a short session of hypnotherapy. My chosen anchor is actually the “floating down a river” relaxed feeling I experienced during hypnotherapy and it is something I will continue to work on.

Last night, I read through the self-hypnosis technique several times before going to sleep. I wasn’t too sure what to make of it, but the strange thing is, when I was reading it, all I could hear was the practitioner’s voice speaking those same words back to me earlier that day. As usual, I woke up once in the night, but this time I immediately applied the technique, counting backwards from 10. I reached 3…. And the next thing I knew the alarm clock was going off.

I wouldn’t say I was sceptical before, but I didn’t think 12 years of bad habit could be wiped away just like that. But happily it was. And not only that, I now feel calmer and less out of control generally. I know hypnotherapy is nothing magical, but it kind of feels like it.

I will have more hypnotherapy in the future. Certainly for my OCD and again before we go on holiday next year because I suffer an extreme fear of flying. These are definitely two self-limiting issues that have a big negative impact in my life.

If you want to know what goes on in a hypnotherapy session and how effective it can be, then continue on to read my 5 day log on sleep disorder below.

 

DAY 1 – FOLLOWING FIRST SESSION

21 August 2019, 18:03

 

I know how great the ladies are that do the hypnosis; totally at ease with themselves, friendly, calm and extremely knowledgeable about their craft. I’ve also had the explanations and I’ve seen successful results with clients first-hand. So, I know it works, but when people ask me what happens during the session, I can’t tell them.

I therefore decided to book an appointment for help with my sleeping disorder, on the basis that I have not had a good night’s sleep in some 12 years or so. Plus, the situation has worsened since setting up the business, because now when I wake, my mind is so full of thoughts, ideas and concerns that invariably I end up cleaning, ironing or working on the computer in the early hours of the morning.

Anyway, the appointment took place earlier today and I am writing this up straight after. Firstly, I had to give some details about myself, name, address etc. and then we just had a general chat about my main concerns and goals.

The practitioner took notes and asked me quite a lot of extra questions along the way, which led the discussions in some surprising directions. I was also given a number of do’s and don’ts in my bedtime routine. Then I was asked a series of specific questions relating to my sleeping patterns and expectations. In fact, the first session for me was mainly talking.

Once the review was finished, I was invited to hop up on the couch and make myself comfortable. The only other thing I would say here is to make sure you take all the time you need to do this. I kind of took up one position and subsequently wished I’d snuggled into the blanket a bit more. I was still comfortable, but I’m conscious that I rushed when there was no need.

As soon as I was ready, the practitioner started talking in a calm, poised manner. I was certainly aware of everything that she said and I did feel myself relaxing more and more as the session progressed. I would sum up everything that she said was calming and reassuring. However! I did not feel as though I was in a hypnotic state, just a relaxed one.

Except! when I was being prepared to ‘wake up’ I thought, I’ll just open my eyes and jump off the couch…. but no, when it came to it, I was so relaxed I literally couldn’t be bothered to make the effort to open my eyes earlier than was intended. So I was in a hypnotic state but just didn’t realise it.

We had a little chat afterwards and I was given some homework, in my case late evening dog walking, and a technique that I can use every time I wake up through the night.

I still feel very peaceful, perhaps even a little floaty, with a side order of very tired, like I could just go to bed now and sleep and sleep and sleep. But I’m resisting and keeping active until my usual bedtime slot. I have another session booked for a week’s time and may need a third session depending on how things go. I will publish very brief daily notes of progress (or otherwise) between now and then. 

 

DAY 2

22 August 2019, 18:10

 

So, I did my homework last night, although I must confess to using my phone up to half an hour before I went to bed. Will try to do better tonight.

Feeling rather retro in bed wearing my reading glasses to re-connect with one of my old much-loved paperbacks (not touched post-kindle), I only managed 3 pages before realising I was starting to drift off.

Can’t remember anything else until I suddenly woke up sometime later. The first thing that went through my mind was, oh no, I’m going to have to report that I woke up, I’d better check on the time. But I lay still and thought, you know what I can’t be bothered to do that, I’ll just lie here for a bit and do some of the breathing stuff and that thing she showed me with my eyes and then…. Nothing.

Until I woke up sometime later. This time I thought, right, I’m going to get up and do some ironing and think about what I’m going to write later and then…. Nothing.

The next thing I knew the alarm clock was going off and I was still in bed and knew I had slept!

Normally in the morning I feel as though I’ve been cheated of sleep. But this morning I think I felt well rested and calm. I say think, because it’s difficult to remember what well rested and calm actually feels like anymore, but I think I remember it used to be something like this. Haha.

My first job of the day is to see to the dogs and then trog up the garden in my dressing gown and wellies to see to the poultry. And whilst I do that, I tend to think of all things I have to achieve during the day, and then wonder how I’m going to get it all done. But this morning everything felt different. I knew I had things to do and I have been doing them, but I haven’t felt anxious or out of control all day.

Now just wondering how my sleep will go tonight….

 

DAY 3

23 August 2019, 18:33

 

Last night I read for a long time before I started to drift off. At 1.30am our neighbours’ house alarm went off. The noise was absolutely horrendous. Standing outside on the drive at that time was definitely not part of the plan! 20 minutes later the alarm finally reset.

After another long period of reading, I finally drifted off again, but the good news is I woke to the alarm for the second day in a row.

State of mind still chilled. Things that would normally have annoyed or worried me I’m letting drift over my head. Even my annoyance at the fake 3-star review we were given has abated into an accepting shrug, I’m in business now, things like that are going to happen.

Hopefully tonight there will be no impediments to my progress report.

 

DAY 4 & 5 ONWARDS

25 August 2019, 16:39

 

Tip from my practitioner: if I’m going to bed and reading for a long time, I’m not ready to go to bed! Kind of obvious I suppose. Haha.

Anyway, the last 2 nights I have only woken up once and I’ve managed to get back to sleep again quite quickly, no reading involved, just a little bit of breathing technique on its own. 

The major difference to waking at night now is that a) it only happens once and not multiple times, and b) when I do wake in the night I continue to remain in a state of relaxation until I fall asleep again.  Each morning I am woken by the alarm clock and I continue to feel calmer and more focused throughout the day.

My second session of hypnotherapy is due on Wednesday, so I will do my next update on Thursday, 29 August.

I am excited for my next session because I have made leaps and bounds from the first session, even though it mainly involved talking and just a small amount of hypnotherapy. And even if my current sleep pattern turns out to be as good as it gets, I will remain over the moon. My goal was to achieve an uninterrupted sleep of 4 to 5 hours, and I am more than doing that now and already feeling a whole lot better for it. 

 

2 Comments

  1. Lizzie

    What a super insight! Thanks so much for sharing, that was really informative and useful too. Look forward to hearing how you get on. xx

    Reply
    • Anonymous

      Your nights are very eventful lol .. I think it’s amazing that you seem so chilled and not letting things worry you.
      Jill x

      Reply

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