Is Hypnotherapy more powerful than NLP
As a trainer of Interactive Hypnotherapy and an NLP master coach, I’m often conflicted in explaining which one is better. A better question is when to use each modality? Let the client be the guide…
I was about to outline some pros and cons when a vivid thought came to mind of a client from many years back. She was in a car accident, and her three other friends died in the car. Let’s call her Elisa because all my client’s sessions are confidential; all qualify with celebrity status in that regard.
Elisa was a young lady searching for answers. This event changed her life in ways we can only imagine, the accident left her asking ‘why?’ and created a phobia of traveling in cars. When she told me, I was shocked, but I didn’t want to show that; I wanted to remain calm to support her in the story she was telling me.
There was lots of talk of philosophies and perspectives of life between us but the grip she had on the story was strong. My attempt to comfort this experience was limited and I knew there was a greater part of her subconscious mind that was projecting these feelings of dread into her consciousness, like a firework exploding in her mind, triggered when she traveled in cars. I could almost feel the words she was using to express the event.
I didn’t ask about the accident but let her tell me what was relevant. I wanted to keep her out of that ‘loop’ as much as possible, knowing it could trigger her emotionally and that could have a negative outcome on the session.
If I was to use NLP to help Elisa release these feelings, she would have to go into or even see the event – and this is where hypnotherapy trumps NLP for me. Although I use NLP, I wouldn’t for this kind of severe trauma.
I’ve successfully facilitated change in many clients with similar levels of trauma, without going anywhere near the actual event. For me, this has to be a better alternative. If there is an option, why take your client into or be near a traumatic event when there is a calmer (and in my professional opinion), safer alternative?
If Elisa was to go and see a psychiatrist, psychologist or a counselor she may have ended up on medication, plus all those years of traveling to talk and discuss the events; the latter could ultimately reinforce the emotion, making those synapses of the brain an even more frequently traveled loop.
Elise was able to let go of the emotional connection to this event in one session. Yes, she will always know what happened – the aim isn’t to hide or erase that event but to sever the negative emotional connection to that memory. There is a very simple explanation to this, but it will digress from this particular blog, so I will write about it next time.
To summarize, NLP is very effective, and there is no doubt about that, but it has limits, where hypnotherapy can carry on with the heavy lifting. Combining Interactive Hypnotherapy is leaving the choice and responsibility to change with the client.
This modality gives the practitioner the ability to negotiate with the client’s subconscious mind; it often feels like negotiating with a terrorist, taking you and the client to places neither knew existed. But that’s the beauty of Interactive Hypnotherapy, it’s your client’s journey, and unlike NLP, as a Hypnotherapist are along for the ride. You are stepping into the reality of the client with Interactive Hypnotherapy – not taking control or making the client fit into a box that they might not be ready for.
Instant Success also depends on the quality of the hypnotherapist’s training. I once heard of a lady in Manchester who offers stop smoking sessions. She told one of her clients to imagine he was in a coffin as that is what was going to happen when he died from smoking. Needless to say, he left and later developed a phobia for small spaces! No surprise there.
We are at the mercy of our fellow practitioners and their quality of service because it’s a direct influence on our practice. This is why we must be aware of the quality of our training and do our research into the trainers and their philosophies on the modality they teach.
Picking a practitioner is not so different from opening the yellow pages and picking a plumber; there are good plumbers and not so good. I hope this blog will encourage you to be the best plumber for your clients, helping them unblock as much crap as possible in one session… they are capable of it – my clients are living testament to that.
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