Did you catch the TV programme ‘You’re back in the room’ presented by Phillip Schofield this weekend? This TV game show is based on using stage hypnosis to get participants to undertake tasks to win prize money. Personally, I found the programme amusing and took it for exactly what it is - an entertainment programme. But then, I use hypnotherapy in my therapy approach, and I know that there is huge difference between stage and clinical hypnosis.
First and foremost with either type of hypnosis, it is important to know that no person can be asked to do something they do not wish to do, and it is definitely not mind control! These types of shows are produced with the aim of entertaining people, and nothing else. It is, however, slightly worrying when they claim that it is about controlling people’s mind as this is a false and misleading statement. The people participating in these types of entertainment programmes have taken part in a big audition process. Producers are looking for personalities who are willing to participate 100%, who will let go of any inhibitions and who may also be looking for a bit of ‘fame’. You can’t be blamed for wondering if the participants are purely ‘playing along’ to perform this required role!
To set the record straight, being hypnotised is a natural state where you are simply feeling very relaxed. We all experience trance on a daily basis, just think about the state you are in just before you fall asleep or when you wake up, In fact, all hypnosis is self-hypnosis, we all have the ability to enter a hypnotic state, and we automatically do this several times a day. When hypnosis is used in a therapeutic context, it would include positive affirmations in order for you to overcome old negative beliefs which may be holding you back in life.
As a practising therapist, I assume there is a risk that these types of shows will put some people off using hypnotherapy for their personal development. This is a shame, in particular since therapeutic hypnotherapy is a method recommended by many organisations and health professionals. As with any alternative process there is a need for the involved person to feel compassionate about their desire to make a positive change. This means allowing themselves to fully embrace the tools to take control of their own inner abilities.
When I work with clients, it has absolutely no resemblance to showbiz hypnotherapy. I am guided by my client’s desire to make a change, and I will support my clients to achieve successful results. Besides using hypnotherapy, I combine my approach with techniques from NLP (Neuro-linguistic Programming) and CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) allowing my clients to have an extensive set of therapeutic tools to use on their journey.
If you do decide to watch ‘You’re back in the Room’ I encourage you to enjoy it, have a giggle and let yourself be entertained, after all, having a good laugh is healthy as it encourages the well-good hormone, endorphins, to enter your system. Just bear in mind that clinical hypnotherapy and stage hypnosis have nothing in common. For your personal welfare, you can reap major benefits from attending a therapeutic hypnotherapy session where your qualified hypnotherapist will help you work on your unique concern.
By Tina Elven