Face to face appoitments

Face to Face hypnotherapy sessions are now available in Ilminster and Chard. Both venues are wonderful and have a welcoming, safe and healing atmosphere:

Jordan's Courtyard
Horton Cross,
Ilminster
Somerset
TA19 9PY
https://www.jordanscourtyard.co.uk/

And

Chard Natural Health Centre
Fore Street Chambers
32a Fore Street
Chard
TA20 1PT
https://www.chardclinic.org/

Appoitment times and availability

Appoitments are available as follows:

MondaysChard Natural Health Centre
TuesdaysChard Natural Health Centre
WednesdaysJordans Courtyard
ThursdaysMainly online appoitments
FridaysJordans Courtyard
Saturday amJordans Courtyard
Saturday pmChard Natural Health Centre

I love working from both these venues and people who come to see me often comment on how nice the rooms are.

Take good care.

Andy

Initial Consultations - What's involved

A safe space for talking and listening in one of the therapy rooms at Jordans Courtyard
My initial consultations are currently free of charge and informal. They usually last about an hour.

They are an opportunity for us to meet, to get to know each other a little, to talk and listen. At this stage there is no obligation or pressure to commence therapy.

The main aims of the session is for me to find out more about what you'd like to change and for you to find out if hypnotherapy feels right for you and your situation.

Before we begin talking, I will ask you what you like to be called, explain the confidentiality I will guarantee you and ask your permission to take some brief notes. If you are happy to proceed, the session involves 4 parts:

  1. Listening to you and finding out what you would like help with, what you would like to change and how you would know if the therapy had been successful.
  2. I then ask you some background questions to find out a  bit more about you and your history of experiencing the things you are seeking help with (Stage 1 and 2 usually take about 30 minutes)
  3. Then I share some information about how the brain and mind works, how we can suffer or get stuck in the way we do and what we can do about it.
  4. Then I explain how hypnotherapy works and what you could expect if you wanted to have a number of sessions

During the initial consultation we do not do any hypnosis or trance work.

There will be no pressure to sign up to sessions, you can take your time to decide.

If you do wish to proceed in working together, I will ask you to review and sign our standard Consent Form before we commence in booking the sessions, sending you my accompanying self hypnosis audio and a request for payment.

Initial Consultations are just an opportunity to find out more.

Many people say that booking this and turning up was the most difficult part of all. The rest was enjoyable and really helpful.

Take good care

Andy


"Problem talk creates problems, solution talk creates solutions"
Steve de Shazer


The sessions after the free initial consultation are also an hour long.

Reflection on the previous week

They always begin by me asking you about positive things have happened this week. This is really important because solution-focused work is designed to help you identify and develop your strengths and build on what's there, not what is missing or lacking. This is also important because we want to help clients think from a particular part of our mind that is associated with positively and problem solving. It is also related to a large body of neuroscience that shows how positive thinking, positive action and positive interaction are associated with the release of feel good chemicals like serotonin, dopamine, oxytocin and endorphin.

The quote about Steve de Shazer really captures the essence of these ideas. He was a psychotherapist and together with his wide Insoo Kim Berg established Solution Focused Therapy, initially in the USA.

We do of course acknowledge, recognise and talk about the past but our focus, in this style of therapy, is on what's good (however small) and how do we build on this.

Visualising positive change and deciding on the next small step

The next part of the session often invovles asking you to think, imagine and feel what life would be like when you make those changes. From this we talk about a small step that you could be willing to make over the next 2 or 3 days. The effectiveness of the therapy is based on clients achieving small steps in the beginning, feeling good about their achievement and building from there.

Hypnosis (trance) work

Then clients will usually move from the talking chairs to the couch or reclining chair. I will guide you into trance as described in the trance question of the F.A.Qs. This usually lasts about 20-30 minutes but can be longer depending on your particular needs.

Farewell

Once clients come out of trance, we usually say something brief and encouraging about the week ahead and confirm arrangements for the following session. Ideally our clients will leave the session with optimism, resolve and determination and a wonderfully empowered feeling on which to take that next step.

In between sessions

Most importantly, clients will take the steps they wanted to make in the following week and put into practice any new awareness or positive action.

We ask clients to listen to the sleep audio every night to help them practice going into trance, becoming calm and becoming familiar with the voice of the therapist and the background track that we use.
The three important things to know about hypnosis are that:

  1. It is completely safe
  2. You are awake and fully in control
  3. No one can make or suggest you do anything that you don't want to do 
It's nothing like the entertaining hypnotists you may have seen on the telly.

One of the most famous hypnotherapists of all time, Dave Elman, famously said (n the only book he published) that 'all hypnosis is self hypnosis'. What he meant by this is that it is impossible for someone to enter trance unless they choose to.
Hypnosis (or trance) sounds extraordinary but we go into trance many times every day. It happens when we concentrate on something intently and temporarily shut out the outside world as if we cant even hear it. You will have experienced this in all sorts of ways. For example:

  • in a busy office, if you are really focus on a deadline, you can sometimes totally disregard the background noise (as if it's not there) whereas at other times the noise that other colleagues are making can really bother you
  • when driving up the motorway, you notice you have driven for 20 miles and you cant remember doing so because you were so absorbed in your own thoughts. You drove perfect safely
  • when you go our for a run or cycle ride and at certain times you cant feel yourself putting in the physical effort, you are away with your own thoughts and in the zone
  • when you are concentrating on something (gardening, knitting, crafts, problem solving, watching a great movie, spending quality time with your partner) and you temporarily totally forget all about the difficult problem you had on your mind

It is interesting that in these situations, when we are not thinking directly about a problem, we suddenly seem to come up with solutions. The same can happen after a good night' sleep.

During the hypnotherapy sessions we purposely support clients to enter trance. This is achieved through the use of guided relaxation, imagery, story telling and metaphor. These are intentionally vague and ambiguous so that the clients themselves decide what to make of them and how to make use of them.

The trance part of the session usually lasts for about 30 minutes and takes place on a couch or reclining chair (see photo above) that is also in the therapy room. You can chose whether to be covered with a light blanket and some prefer this and some prefer not to, it's up to you.

In this relaxed and calm state, the mind, being free of distractions, seems to see things that have been obscured. It becomes open to new possibilities and aware of new solutions to the things that you want to change. Dave Elman described trance as bypassing our 'critical faculty', i.e. the part of our mind that often puts up a barrier to new suggestions.

Trance is also an opportunity to bolster a client's confidence and motivation to achieve their goal for the coming week.

During trance we sometimes ask clients to indicate with a raise of their hand or finger if they have achieved a certain stage. We never touch clients during trance or during any other part of our sessions except perhaps for a welcome handshake (before COVID).

At the end of trance, some clients feel a bit groggy for a minute or two, like if you fall asleep on the settee in the afternoon and wake up feeling a bit dazed. But this wares off very quickly. Despite some of the myths about hypnosis, there is not even a single documented case of someone remaining in trance. This is an interesting and entertaining story but that is all.

Some people do drift off to sleep for a few minutes during trance, as I have done myself, and this is perfectly normal.

All clients are able to download my free sleep audio which allows them to go into trance at home and become more familiar with it.

All the people I have worked with enjoy and look forward to the trance part of the session. It is very relaxing, somehow ordinary yet somehow extraordinary at the same time.

Why not come and find out for yourself?
The number of sessions you will need will depend on many factors and most importantly the degree to which you feel you are making progress.

Some clients seek help with a single issue, some seek help with a range of issues or find that what they want to work on changes over time.

Some clients come for help once and others many come back some months or years later for a top up or to receive help with something new.

As a guide, the number of sessions you would usually need to gain a beneficial effect will range from a minimum of 2 to around 12 or more.

It is usually important to attend weekly as longer gaps during the initial stages don't tend to help people develop new patterns.

  • Quit smoking is usually completed in a single 2 hour session.
  • Specific phobias and fears can often be resolved in 3 sessions
  • Long term  problems like high levels of generalised anxiety or depression can take longer and involve 8, 10 or 12 or even more sessions

When thinking about this and the investment that you may make in hypnotherapy, I believe it is important to know the following:

  • The therapy aims to support you to make long term positive change
  • It is not designed to act as long term therapeutic support and it is rare and questionable that clients would be with us for very long periods of time
  • During therapy things can be revealed to you that you didn't realise and after a few sessions clients can decide to work on something different than they came to see us about initially - this is quite common and perfectly ok
  • When it feels right I will encourage you to think about stopping and we will discuss this regularly
  • You will decide when to stop. It is always your choice and your decision.

The effectiveness of the therapy is influenced by many things but three are really important.

  1. The skills and confidence or the therapist
  2. The genuine intention and effort made by the client
  3. The client and therapist forming a good working relationship

I'll do my utmost to play my part.

Let's work together and help you make that positive change.

As part of our Code of Conduct we believe in having completely clear and transparent fees.

These are set out below and on our Prices page of the website where you can also make payments.

The basic pricing structure is as follows:

Initial Informal consultation - £0 Free

A one hour session or sessions paid for individually either in advance or on the day - £60

Prices for sessions paid in advance

3 sessions (1 per week for three weeks) to address a specific phobia or fear - £180

4 sessions of general therapy paid for in advance as a block - £220

Please also see my Refund Policy:
https://www.behypnotherapy.co.uk/payment-and-refund-policy
I am very comfortable working with younger clients (children approximately 8 yrs and older and young people) provided their parents / guardians give their consent.

These sessions can be tailored for the needs of the client and their family.

Parents / guardians can for example:

  • join the Initial Consultation
  • sit in on the sessions
  • sit just outside the consultation room or room at home (if the sessions are provided online)
  • join in with their child's trance

For online sessions, we would agree in advance how the session would work, how it will start and finish and any safeguards that would be put in place to give the client uninterrupted quiet time and access to someone else if they felt they needed help. We would also gain agreement about what we would do if there was a problem with the internet or our technology.

I can accommodate most requests which would make the therapy feel right for the client and their family. However there are two golden rules that we ask parents / guardians to follow.

Firstly that the needs of the child or young person must come first. They must be the predominant reason for the client coming to see me.

Secondly that if you sit in and observe the session we ask you not to talk or interact. This is to ensure that the therapy is based around the client and how they describe their situation and progress.

I am very happy to have an initial conversation with you.

I also happy to talk to both you and your child as part of a free initial consultation.

Please do get in touch.
It is extremely important that we take all necessary measures to keep you safe when attending for face to face sessions. The main safety measures instituted at Jordans Courtyard in respect of COVID are as follows. These apply to all clients and staff entering and using the therapy rooms:

  1. You will be asked to confirm that you do not currently have COVID symptoms (e.g. high temperature, a dry cough, a sudden loss of taste or smell)
  2. You will also be asked to confirm that you have not been in contact with someone suspected of having COVID symtoms in the last 14 days
  3. You will be asked to have your temperature taken in the car park before entering the building . (I will do this myself with a small special machine that is placed near you but doesn't need to touch you)
  4. You will be asked to sanitise your hands before entering and leaving the therapy room
  5. Everyone is asked to follow a new one way system into and out of the building
  6. During the therapy, we will ensure a 2 metre gap is maintained at all times
  7. You will not be expected to wear a mask during the therapy but you are welcome to wear one if you would prefer
  8. The chair handles and any parts of the furniture in contact with client's hands will be cleaned after each client
  9. Enhanced levels of cleaning will be undertaken of the toilets and rest areas

These measures are of course unusual but necessary to ensure we all remain as safe as possible and limit any transmission of the virus.

Thank you for your understanding and your cooperation
A positive consequence of COVID-19 has been that hypnotherapy sessions have been tried and in many cases proved to be effect even when provided on line.

There are increasingly being offered to clients as a positive alternative to face to face.

The key points to know and prepare for if you are having sessions online are as follows:

  1. Online sessions are the same length as face to face sessions and follow the same basic pattern
  2. Sessions are usually provided using video conferencing software called Zoom. I will send you an email which includes a link to the meeting invitation. 
Before the session starts
Before the session, I will ask all clients to ensure they have:

  • a laptop, computer, tablet or smart phone with video facilities (with adequate power or connected to a power supply)
  • a pair of earphones
  • a place where they can remain uninterrupted and talk confidentially and freely for around 1 hr
  • a sofa, bed, chair or floor on which they can lie back, without any risk of falling off, during the trance part of the session
  • ideally during the trance, the laptop, tablet or smart phone is placed in a position which allows the therapist to see the person
  • to check that the area that the will lie back in is free from any harmful objects
During the start of the session
During the start of the session we:

  • conduct a quick sound check to ensure the levels of voice and backing track feel right for you
  • We agree an alternative contact method, e.g. through your partner or a trusted third party in the extremely unlikely event that you experienced a serious health or other event during the session (not caused by the hypnotherapy0
  • We agree what to do if the internet connection was to freeze or there was a problem with either of our IT. This will usually include:
    • logging back on using the same Zoom invitation, if internet or power returns within a couple of minutes
    • calling each other on our mobile phones if the delay is going to be longer
    • rebooking the session for another time
I have yet to have to actually follow any of the above precautions however they are quick and easy to agree and reassuring to have in place, just to be on the safe side.

If you have any questions or specific requirements relating to online therpay please do get in touch