In a nutshell, Solution Focused Hypnotherapy is a powerful neuroscience based, modern psychotherapy method, created to help people make the changes they want to make quickly, comfortably and in a way that lasts the test of time.
But lets break it all down and start with what Solution Focused Hypnotherapy is.
Solution Focused Hypnotherapy combines a type of evidence based psychotherapy (SFBT) and clinical hypnosis.
Hypnosis is used because it's an excellent, comfortable and easy way to help a person access the power of their own mind and by doing so that person can sort through and clear many things much quicker than by using some other methods.
The state of hypnosis, known as trance state, is in fact a very natural and common occurrence. People go into trance—this focused sate of attention—many times a day. It happens all the time, whilst reading, listening, watching TV, driving and doing most routine tasks. Hypnotherapy uses this natural and powerful state of trance for therapeutic purposes.
So, I hear you thinking “If I'm going into trance naturally, why am I not fixing all my issues naturally myself?”
Well, the short answer is, sometimes you are but sometimes (often when you're not at your best) you're not. It really depends on the suggestions and messages you've got going on in your mind at the time—something which you're probably not fully in control of. Unfortunately, we often go into a 'negative trance' and we use those powerful moments of access to the subconscious mind, to affirm all the wrong stuff. “I'm such a...”, “I can't believe I keep doing that”, “this is ridiculous”, “I'm never going to...” etc.
The bottom line is when we're unaware of a process, we can't make it work for us. If you don't know you have a tool you won't know to use it or how to use it. If you haven't learnt how to use a tool, you'll use it ineffectively at best or possibly even unintentionally against yourself. Most of the time, because of certain beliefs, plus certain structures in our brain (we'll call the 'primitive brain' for simplicity) this tool we have is working against us in our modern day lives.
What Solution Focused Hypnotherapy does is teach us to pull ourselves consciously out of and above the 'primitive brain' and uses hypnosis—that powerful natural state of trance, that important access to the subconscious mind, that space where the brain can be rewired—to big positive effect.
We could say, Solution Focused Hypnotherapy is Hypnotherapy PLUS.
Neuroscience and clinical studies have been demystifying things for us for a number of decades now. And what makes Solution Focused Hypnotherapy a sort of 'Hypnotherapy PLUS', is that it brings together many knowledge streams; the latest knowledge of brain structure and brain chemistry, the most proven aspects of psychotherapy including SFBT, CBT, some tested NLP tools and a modern understanding of hypnosis. The result is a power-charged not only therapy but an education, beneficial to the vast majority of ordinary people; business people, medical professionals, people who're struggling but also people at the top of their game looking to keep their edge. The neuroscientific understanding of how the brain works means almost anyone can benefit from Solution Focused Hypnotherapy.
So, to answer that question again of what's it's all about in a different way, we could say it's about you, me, your boss, a friend down on their 'luck', the healthcare professional wanting to maximise their effectiveness and really anyone who wants to create changes in their everyday reality, learning to use the power of their own mind to bring about those positive changes into their lives now.
It's all about seeing functional positive change in our everyday lives, which is what most of us need.
Now, this positive change can take different forms. For someone it can be coping with stress better, for another not being so frustrated or angry, for another overcoming a fear or phobia, another having the confidence to speak up at meetings or public speaking, another to stop addictions to drinking,smoking, shoplifting, screens etc... For others these positive changes may mean becoming a more serene mum, overcoming anxiety, enjoying a better relationship, easing the impact of health issues, healthy eating or weight loss, finding motivation, sleeping better... We could go on and on, because almost every person you know, from people you may think haven't got it quite together, to people you look up to, almost everyone has something they would like to see improved in their lives. Yet many of us either go about it the hard way or ignore it because it seems too hard to change.
Most people see change as something that's going to take a lot out of them and many may feel they don't have the time or the energy to dedicate to a process of change. They imagine either endless talking in talking therapies or if they imagine hypnosis, they may think it's about giving up control, something unfamiliar, scary, quackery...
These things couldn't be further away from Solution Focused Hypnotherapy.
What's great about Solution Focused Hypnotherapy is there's no endless talking about problems and digging into the past. We spend our precious time learning to focus on the solution instead of the problem, Another great thing is that the client is front and centre, taking control, utilising their own resources to construct a clear vision of their own preferred future, The therapist's role is to help to strengthen and imprint the client's vision.
Solution Focused Hypnotherapy is not something that's done to you. It's an education. It's learning how 'up-there' works and becoming the boss of your mind.
Fortunately, this doesn't have to take long. Of course we need willingness and repetition to learn things, but neuroscience has shown us that the old saying “you can't teach an old dog new tricks” is not true for people. Research has shown that far from being hardwired, the brain is constantly being rewired, that means that when we want to learn a 'new trick' we can! This is great news for us all. Furthermore, what research has also shown is that new neural pathways can develop and become established within about 45 days. So, the time-frames previously thought to be needed for effective therapy have been reassessed and based on this fact and on clinical evidence, we can be confident that brief therapy—done the right way with a willing client committed to themselves—can be effective and lasting.
A brief closing note about the success rate of Hypnotherapy.
An established peer-review journal Psychotherapy of the American Psychological Association published a study conducted by the prestigious clinical psychologist Dr. Alfred A. Barrios looking at the overall lasting success of various psychological approaches. Barrios (1970) found Hypnotherapy to have a 93% success rate after only 6 sessions, compared to Behaviour Therapy which had 72% success rate after 22 sessions and ordinary Psychotherapy only 38% success rate after a massive 600 sessions.
So, you can see that far from hypnotherapy being some airy fairy, wishy washy, look into my eyes and magic happens sort of thing. Solution Focused Hypnotherapy is a serious golden nugget and a great way forward to greater well-being.
Remember, we all deserve to be well.
Maral Kojayan BA Hons(Dunelm), MA, DHP, DSFH, HPD
Clarity Flow Hypnotherapy Blog