Everyone experiences feelings of anxiety during their lifetime. For example, you may feel worried and anxious about sitting an examination, or having a medical test, or a job interview. Feeling anxious sometimes is perfectly normal. However, for people with Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD), feelings of anxiety are much more constant, and tend to affect their day-to-day life.
Unlike phobia and panic, with General Anxiety it’s not always clear to the anxious person exactly what it is they feel so anxious about. They’re just aware of feeling anxious all the time.
When there’s no identifiable cause, the person often becomes anxious about feeling anxious all the time, and the problem starts to feed off itself.
People with Generalised Anxiety Disorder may find that they:
Easily lose their patience
Have difficulty concentrating
Think constantly about the worst outcome
Have difficulty sleeping
Become depressed and/or
Become preoccupied with, or obsessional about, one subject
The physical symptoms may include:
Low sex drive,
Diarrhea, or constipation,
Loss of appetite,
Insomnia (not being able to sleep).
The relationship of physical and mental symptoms can create a vicious cycle that can be triggered by a symptom at any point. With Generalised Anxiety, people often manage to keep things under control and the cycle grumbles on. The effort of keeping things under control is itself very stressful – and so adds fuel to the problem. This is how some people come to feel anxious about their anxiety, making the problem even more intense. Anxiety is a mixture of physical and mental symptoms. They are part of what psychologists call the ‘fight or flight’ response. When the body is under threat it automatically prepares either to defend itself or run, and sometimes this mechanism can become over sensitive. Hypnotherapy aims to stop this cycle and break the link , so that the mind learns new ways of rationalising the world, and any given situation; the physical symptoms are reduced, this in turn, gives positive feedback to the mind and the negative cycle is broken.
Hypnotherapy turns the over-sensitive switch off.
Everyone responds to Hypnotherapy and Self-Hypnosis differently, just as people do to any form of therapeutic intervention. Some will notice an instant change and for others it may take longer, but even when it feels that nothing at all has actually happened, you’ll be surprised at just how much has changed, but this is only noticed in retrospect, when you look back at how you were before you started using self-hypnosis. Just give it time and don’t try too hard to make it happen. You will find that the more often you use self-hypnosis, the easier it will be to achieve a very relaxed state of hypnosis, and the deeper the hypnotic trance state will become.
Hypnosis has been used for centuries and is recognised by medical practitioners in the National Health Service, where it is being successfully used to control the symptoms of IBS. It has helped millions of people to stop smoking, lose weight, and conquer their phobias and fears, such as fear of the dentist and fear of flying. Positive thoughts result in positive re-actions, which bring positive success and achievement.
Since hypnosis accesses the creative unconscious part of the mind, where there is no challenge or resistance to new ideas and concepts, the mind becomes receptive and responsive in such a way that it can absorb these new ideas and concepts quickly and easily. Therefore the treatment can be much more effective, and produces longer lasting results than with many other complimentary and alternative forms of therapy.
When Hypnotherapy is used for improving health, the process can actually affect the way the body functions. By focusing on certain biological and physiological aspects of the body, whilst in a state of hypnosis, it is possible to cause blood to flow better, veins to dilate, heart rate to reduce, and white blood cells counts to increase, thus improving the immune system.
How and why does hypnotherapy produce results?
By using self-hypnosis, you will become progressively more and more relaxed until you enter a deep, relaxed, hypnotic trance state.
All the tension and stress is eliminated from the body, and as the body relaxes so does the mind. The deep relaxation process will distract the conscious part of your mind, and while this happens, positive suggestions are given directly to the unconscious part of the mind.
Once the unconscious mind is open, it is much more receptive to the information it needs to change the unwanted experience or behaviour you want to stop or change. When you’re in a deep, relaxed, state of hypnosis, you will be given ‘post hypnotic anchors’, which you can use when in a conscious wakeful state to help activate the changes, such as feeling more self-confident, determined to lose weight, control a pain or fear, or to quit smoking forever.
Sharon Shinwell Dip Couns Dip HP is a UK qualified Hypno Psychotherapist in private practice. She is the author of the Here To Listen Series of Self-Hypnosis CDs. For more information on Sharon please visit http://www.counselling-manchester.com and for her Self-Hypnosis CDs, please visit http://www.selfhypnosisuk.com