Our guide to hypnotherapy
Molly Longman

Our guide to hypnotherapy

First published date April 16 2015 Amended date April 16 2015

When most people think of hypnosis, they’re reminded of that one time they watched their semi-intoxicated friend dance like a chicken while singing a One Direction song on stage in front of a comedy club full of people, claiming to be hypnotised – but it’s more than that. Believe it or not, hypnosis can be incredibly beneficial to those seeking therapy for behavioural corrections, phobias, and more. Hypnotherapy has been proven to work on patients looking to quit smoking, correct eating disorders, treat depression, lose weight, sleep better, and stop gambling, among other things.

Becoming a hypnotherapist means helping people in their darkest of times. So, if you think that helping people is your calling, why not try signing up for a hypnotherapy course?


 How does it work?

In a nutshell, hypnosis alters our state of consciousness, switching off the analytical, left side of the brain, while making the right side more alert - this means you’re using only your subconscious mind. Because your subconscious mind works on instinctive forces, unlike the conscious mind, this is the part of the brain that a hypnotherapist seeks to change and alter, so that the patient’s behaviour and physical state can also be changed.


Head still spinning?

Say a patient wants to overcome their fear of public speaking. They may do everything in their power to overcome their fear of speaking in front of a crowd, but may still fail, because their subconscious mind is retaining a deep-seated fear of stuttering and spluttering. A hypnotherapist will reprogram the subconscious voice telling the brain it can’t stand up and speak.


Hypnotherapy can help...

...More people and problems than you’d think. Quitting smoking and losing weight are some of the better-known conditions that can be treated with hypnotherapy, but the practice is also known to treat people with problems on all ends of the spectrum, from arthritis patients, to those who experience panic attacks, sexual performance problems, and even self-esteem issues.



Hypnotherapy and hypnosis date back to ancient Egyptian times, over 5,000 years ago. The Temple of Imhotep in Egypt’s Old Kingdom was recorded as an important healing centre where practices such as ‘temple sleep’ (AKA, an old-age hypnotic state) were used to cure individuals.


Becoming a hypnotherapist

The first step you can take to become a hypnotherapist is taking a course that offers training in the field. On a course, you’ll learn about the hypnotic phenomenon and how to apply various hypnosis techniques. Through workshops, you’ll gain hands- (and mind-) on learning to help you develop your skills.


Hypnotherapy: a growing field

Believe it or not, hypnotherapist Dr. Milton H. Erickson used hypnosis to help a 20-year-old man grow a recorded 12 inches in one year in 1960. He used four steps, relaxation, deepening, suggestion, and termination, in his hypnosis technique.This became of the most famous hypnotherapy case studies in history.


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