Psychotherapy/Clinical Hypnosis

I work with children and adults as well as doing marriage/couples counseling. I see many people who are dealing with anxiety, depression, relationship issues, parent/child problems, sexuality issues, males who were sexually abused and people with anger management issues. In 1991 I started, and still facilitate, a psychotherapy group for adult males who were sexually abused as boys.

In recent years I have incorporated the use of clinical hypnosis as a means of helping individuals reach their goals.  For the person unfamiliar with Clinical Hypnosis a bit of clarification is worthwhile.  It is not stage hypnosis.  There is no goofy post hypnotic suggestions to cluck like a chicken or sing the national anthem every time the hypnotist raises his/her right hand or some other cue.  Instead,  Clinical Hypnosis in the therapeutic setting is a tool used to create an atmosphere of relaxation and a deeper sense of internal focus.  Clients maintain total control of themselves and usually experience a day dreamy trance, to the degree they feel comfortable.  With the mind and body relaxed in this different kind of way, the individual is more able to discover, learn and make connections.  The mind becomes open on all of its different levels.  The mind/body connection can be accessed and the distinction between conscious and unconscious becomes minimized.  The bottom line is that it is relaxing and a climate for change is created at the same time.

In hypnosis the manner in which the therapist helps the client reach the inner place of comfort is called the induction.  The induction almost always involves the therapist talking while the client remains quiet.  There basically have evolved two distinct styles of inductions over the years.  The older, more directive style involves the therapist telling the client to “count backwards from one hundred”, suggesting that “your eyes will become heavier and heavier” and so on.  The other style is an outgrowth of the teachings of Milton Erickson.  It is the conversational style.  The client closes their eyes or turns their attention inward in some way and the therapist talks hypnotically using things he/she knows from what the client has shared, stories and metaphors. Both styles have their merits, what works for one person might not work for the next.  There is a brief example of the directive style under the Eye Closure tab.  In my practice I am generally more inclined to use the conversational style of induction.

Clinical Hypnosis is a treatment modality that works well with a wide range of issues.  It was once used mainly for smoking cessation, weight loss and other “habit” behaviors.  In the last 30-40 years it has increasingly been used therapeutically for everything from depression/anxiety to pain management.  In my therapy practice I use clinical hypnosis with about 25% of the people I work with.  When using hypnosis I record sessions and burn CD’s so that people can take them home and listen as many times as they like.  Research shows that when people do this, or other kinds of homework, the rate of therapeutic success is higher.  This can be done in the office or for people living at a great distance sessions can be conducted on the telephone and CD’s sent to the individual.  Ways of contacting me can be found on my home page.