How to successfully incorporate self hypnosis (and other techniques) into your daily routine
Making time to do things that are good for your mental health is so important. I teach all my clients self hypnosis in addition to a variety of relaxation, breathing and other techniques. I’ve written about the importance of self hypnosis on the blog before and how beneficial it can be, not only during the hypnotherapy process but thereafter too.
Let me provide you with 2 client examples. Client A comes for some sessions of hypnotherapy. Learns various self hypnosis techniques in addition to other techniques to help with their issue such as making a note of what has been good about their day, recording their thoughts, and paced breathing. They incorporate these practices in to their daily routine successfully. Client B comes for some sessions of hypnotherapy. Learns the same techniques as Client A. BUT they do not practice the techniques they have learnt. Which one do you think achieves their therapy goals the quickest, feels confident in their ability to help themselves, and are prepared for any hiccups in the future? It’s Client A of course. I see this time and time again in my practice. Those who make use of the tools and techniques they learn during our hypnotherapy sessions together, the more progress they make.
There are many reasons why people may not practice the techniques and I will discuss these briefly in this post in addition to a few pointers to help you successfully incorporate these beneficial techniques in to your daily routine.
So what stops you? Over the years, I’ve heard many reasons for people not incorporating the techniques into their life.
Making a change to your routine, even a small one can be tricky at first. Have you ever bought a new vitamin supplement and struggled to regularly take it? Has the dentist told you to start flossing your teeth regularly and you keep forgetting to do it? How about deciding to take on the Couch to 5k challenge and spend 6 months on week 1 because you can’t get used to the fact you have to actually go running? I have done all of these things at some point over the years. The techniques you learn within hypnotherapy are new to you and require some time for you to practice them in order to help you achieve what you want to achieve through therapy. Sometimes it can take a bit of getting used to that you have to do something new each day but then when you get into the swing of things, it gets easier and becomes part of your day.
In modern society, people often lead busy lives with commitments and responsibilities. When we go for therapy, life doesn’t just stop so that we can spend our undivided attention solely on helping us feel better. When we have a lot on, more often than not, it is things that are most useful to us that get pushed aside. Like exercise, socialising, relaxation, self care, and preparing healthy food, to name just a few. When we feel overwhelmed by all the things we have to do, taking time out seems counterintuitive, making us fall behind even more. However, just 5 or 10 minutes of self hypnosis or something else that is relaxing or enjoyable, can help take the edge of things, help you see things with perspective and help you to deal with what is going on so much more effectively. You might even find we are more productive.
We often think that in order to relax and switch off, we need everything to be quiet and sit somewhere where we will be undisturbed but that isn’t always the case. When people live with others such as friends, colleagues, spouses or children, it can be difficult to find the space to practice techniques where they won’t be interrupted. Of course we need to be able to focus on what we are doing when performing self hypnosis but relaxation is not needed for hypnosis to be effective and sounds need not disturb you.
More often than not, the techniques taught in hypnotherapy are new to a person when they come to see me. When you first got on a bike or had a driving lesson, did you expect to be able to do it perfectly straight away? No. Sometimes people do self hypnosis and don’t have the same effect as they did when they were taught it in the session with me. They might doubt their ability to do it or worry that they are doing it wrong. Self hypnosis is always going to feel different to when you are guided through hypnosis by a hypnotherapist. It doesn’t mean you’re doing it wrong though or that it’s not having an effect. Hypnosis (and relaxation) is a skill, that takes practice and so the more you do it, the better you’ll get at it.
Having to do techniques to help with whatever problem someone is having hypnotherapy for inevitably reminds them that they have a problem and for some this can be frustrating. This is something I see more of when people are making progress. They feel good and so do not want to spend time doing something that reminds them of their problem. But what they forget is that those techniques are what helped them feel better in the first place and with continued practice will ensure that they keep progressing.
So let’s look at how you can successfully incorporate the techniques in to your daily routine in order to fully benefit from hypnotherapy and empower yourself.
Take responsibility. It’s important to recognise your role in the change process. There may be changes to your lifestyle, routine, thoughts, and behaviours that you may need to make in order to support the goal you are after. Whilst hypnotherapy can help you to achieve these, ultimately you have to be the one to action them. We learn things through repetition which allows us to make changes in our lives. Practicing the techniques not only makes you familiar with them, but you will also get better at using them, so that you can use them when you need to and therefore benefit more greatly.
Keep it interesting and enjoyable. Commit to implementing the techniques but also allow yourself to play around with how you implement them. You will learn lots of different techniques within the hypnotherapy process so switch things about a bit - you don’t have to use the same techniques every time, unless you’ve been instructed to do so. The techniques I teach might be taught for a specific issue but many of them are flexible and can be used for other issues/situations that might arise, so have a play. Hypnosis is enjoyable and fun in and of itself.
Be practical. I recommend to my clients to practice techniques, in particular self hypnosis, little and often. Fitting in 5 minutes here and 10 minutes there is achievable for everyone. Also doing short bursts of hypnosis ensures that your mind stays focused on the task at hand rather than wandering off. Of course you can spend longer doing these things but it’s important to see that it doesn’t have to be all done in one sitting at a specific time that lasts for ages. Make it work for you. The vast majority of techniques that you will learn will benefit you the most if you use them within hypnosis. However, some of them can be done outside of it too, just thinking about the things, can help with distraction, relaxation, positivity, and of course keeps your goal in mind. Ultimately, I want you to view self hypnosis and the other techniques as an essential part of your life rather than a chore.
Make time for it. As I said in the previous point, you don’t need to be doing these techniques for ages. Look at your diary, see when you have some down time and fit them in. Some people prefer doing the techniques it in the morning to start the day off on a positive note. Maybe do them on their lunch break. Others use them after work when they get home to help them unwind. And for others still they might use them before bedtime. It’s not like going to the gym where you have to factor in time to get changed and showered etc. You don’t even have to be at home, by yourself when it’s quiet, to use them. Think outside the box. Perhaps you could do it whilst your catching the bus or walking home from work, when you’re washing up or doing the ironing, when you’re exercising, or perhaps in the shower or bath. Obviously, you’ll get the most from it when you can switch off and give it your undivided attention but understand that you can still gain benefit from doing them in less than ideal environments. You might want to write it in your diary or set a reminder when you’re going to practice the techniques, at least at the beginning whilst you’re incorporating it into your routine.
Think about your reasons for doing it. Write down your reasons for having hypnotherapy and what you want to achieve with it. Not what you’re trying to escape from but what you’re heading towards. Ask yourself, why is it important to practice these new skills? Think about how you will feel after you’ve carried them out. Having a strong reason to do something will help motivate you to do it. Understanding the technique and how it benefits you is important, so if you need some clarification be sure to ask.
Stop making excuses. Sorry, I had to include this in the list. Just do it! We’re all guilty of making excuses for why we’ve not done something or put it off. But by not practicing the techniques, you’re missing out and not giving yourself the best chance of making the change you wish to make. It might sound a bit harsh but I have your best interests at heart when I say this. I want you to benefit from hypnotherapy and get the most out of it. I want you to overcome your issues and be armed with all you need to help yourself.
It is possible for you to successfully incorporate these new, beneficial techniques in to your daily routine and I hope that the information in this article will help you in some way to do that.