Does Hypnotherapy Work?

Jun 30, 2014 | Hypnosis, Hypnotherapy

Hypnotherapy is sometimes a greatly misunderstood practice – many people may think of the typical swinging pocket watch and the phrases ‘stare directly into my eyes… you feel sleepy…’ when they think about hypnosis and we have the mighty Walt Disney and other film and cartoon makers to thank for promoting that in our minds! If not that method, then perhaps you will envision unfortunate audience members being manipulated to start barking like a dog or cluck like chicken.


Yet true hypnotherapy is no daft party trick; it is a reliable strategy for people to overcome detrimental behaviours, like fear, anxiety, overeating or smoking. We can do this by effectively rewiring the depths of the mind and changing the way we respond to certain situations and changing the way we view those situations. However, it is sensible to ask ‘Does hypnotherapy work?’ if you’re wondering about trying it out for yourself. Since there is much misunderstanding about this type of hypnotherapeutic approach, it’s important for you to learn about the way it helps and what rewards it can bring.

Do Hypnotherapy “Put me to sleep?”

The word hypnosis comes from the greek work ‘hypnos’ which does indeed mean sleep.  However, when hypnosis was originally used, it was thought that the person was asleep.  It was later proven that a person is imply in a deep state of relaxation.

I know I’m stating the obvious here but hypnotherapy is hypnosis PLUS therapy.  We all experience hypnosis naturally, many times in our everyday lives.

  • Have you ever got lost in the story of a book or totally absorbed in a film, tv or programme so that you didn’t notice how much time has gone by?
  • Do you ever lay on a beach or in the garden and you are so relaxed in the warmth of the sun that you can’t be bothered to lift your head to see what that noise was, or even what the kids are up to?
  • Are you a jogger or cyclist who can lose themselves in the rhythm of the repetitive action of moving your feet – sometimes called ‘being in the zone’

All that and more are hypnotic trances. You are not asleep. You are in a deep state of focused awareness and this can be a state of relaxation or during an upbeat activity too. As with these activities, during therapy your visual and auditory awareness is usually retained during a hypnosis session. However, due to the fact our perception of time shifts when we are in a hypnotic state, numerous people are dumbfounded by the span of time that has passed in the hypnotic aspect of the session.

Whilst in this ‘state’ using different therapeutic tools and techniques and by making use of the subconscious mind I can then work with you to change unhelpful thinking with new constructive thoughts. The subconscious remembers all of what we have seen or dealt with, unlike the conscious mind which rather quickly forgets the majority of our experiences. A hypnotic approach works by gaining access to these concealed images and beliefs to create new, more favourable beliefs and behaviours.

Is there Genuine Success with Hypnotherapy?

Since Matt Damon said to Jay Leno on TV seeing a hypnotherapist was “the greatest decision I ever made in my life”, it seems that it became the coolest thing to do in Hollywood. Stacks of sports stars, movie stars, politicians, and other famous people are turning to  hypnotherapy for addictions, phobias, fears  and weight loss.

  • Britain’s Prince Harry used hypnotherapy to quit smoking
  • Pregnant Kate Middleton used Hypnotherapy to regain appetite following morning sickness
  • Supermodel Kate Moss used Hypnotherapy for pregnancy
  • Mel B was getting hypnosis for stage fright
  • Actress/model Eva Mendes had hypnotherapy to overcome her arachnophobia – an irrational fear of spiders.


Even though a hypnotic approach might have only just acquired widespread awareness, it is definitely not a new strategy – at the end of the 19th century, a commissioned study by the British Medical Association found that “as a therapeutic agent hypnotism is frequently effective in relieving pain, procuring sleep, and alleviating many functional ailment.”

Einstein is even believed to have used it!

With more than one hundred years of favourable feedback, and many personal successes, hypnotherapy gives a tried-and-tested solution to solve a large selection of issues.

Find our more here about the hypnotherapy I provide and read about testimonials from people I have worked with.

This post discusses: anxiety, fear, Hypnosis, Hypnotherapy, mind, Relaxation, subconscious, therapy, trance
Emma Langton

Emma Langton

Executive Leadership Coach

Emma hosts the Lessons for Leaders podcast. Each week she brings you lessons, learnings, tips and advice to enable you to lead with ease in business, without stress, doubt and overwhelm so that I help you to increase your performance, be resilient and thrive in life. Emma has been providing coaching, training and therapeutic support for executives since setting up her business in 2011. Prior to that she spent over 20 years with people at the top of national and multi-national training and communication businesses.


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