People generally experience one, if not many, stressful events. These events bring anxiety-related issues to the forefront. The event (or events) you may have experienced can be first-hand, such as being abused, attacked, feeling stuck on an airplane, losing your job or losing a close relationship.
The event can also be experienced second- or third-hand. For instance, many people experienced PTSD after watching the TV coverage of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, or even the movie “Jaws”.
Ultimately, a traumatic event can be identified by how it impacts your life upon remembering it. If you feel significantly distressed or emotional, the event is classified as trauma.
The event must have some meaning to evoke a strong emotional reaction. If you believe the event will threaten your survival, safety or security, it triggers a powerful, distressed response. Other threats come from relationships with friends and family, threats to your career, finances or social status.
Meaning is based on emotional attachment and what you value in life. If anything you are attached to is perceived to be under threat, it can cause distress.
The landscape of the brain is the electrochemical state of your brain at the time of the event. If you have experienced stressful events in the past, your neuro-chemical landscape is more susceptible to becoming traumatised.
If you feel trapped in a seemingly inescapable situation, traumatic experiences and anxiety-based disorders will likely result. Inescapability or feeling trapped (i.e. in a bad job, relationship or family situation) are crucial factors which cause trauma. This inescapable circumstance could also be a personal problem or circumstance you feel you can’t escape from.
Why Hypnosis Works for Anxiety and Depression
Hypnosis gives you access to the “playground of your mind” – your subconscious mind. Your subconscious mind is where your true identity lies. It contains everything that makes up who you are (i.e. your personality, beliefs, feelings, etc.)
Hypnosis for anxiety allows you to access your “mental playground” by engaging your subconscious mind. Hypnosis and trance open the doorway to your subconscious, allowing you to fully imagine (often in vivid detail) how much better your life can be.
These treatments allow you to imagine what it would be like to adopt new beliefs, behaviours and identities. Unlike other therapies, hypnosis sidesteps the negative internal dialogue that tells you why you can’t change behaviours or attitudes. Another thing setting hypnosis for anxiety apart is its ability to restructure cognitive distortions and negative self-schema.
In case you were wondering, self-schema refers to your long-lasting, stable memories. This set of memories underpins your beliefs, experiences and generalisations about yourself in specific behavioural areas. And, hypnosis is the ideal way to start altering your self-schema.
The hypnotists’ job is to identify the negative thought patterns that have been causing you harm or trauma. Once these negative thought patterns are identified, your hypnotist can help you rewrite these “mental stories”.