We live in a world of fad diets and quick fixes that can make the search for a healthier lifestyle overwhelming and disheartening. But each of us has a secret weapon nestled within our minds, with which we can transform our approach to wellness, health, and weight loss in simple and empowering ways.
The answer is clinical hypnotherapy, a therapeutic technique that has gained attention for its potential to harness the power of the mind. It works by aligning our desires, boosting our determination to succeed, and using our imagination to communicate this message to the unconscious mind.
Research has taken clinical hypnosis beyond the realm of entertainment and mystery to a recognised method now available in hospitals, therapy centres, and classrooms.
A recent study published in the International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis shows that individuals who include clinical hypnosis in their weight-loss journey shed twice as many kgs. Clinical hypnosis helps break unwanted cravings, shows people how to enjoy their food, and motivates them to stick to their exercise routines.
Other studies highlight that clinical hypnosis keeps on working even two years after you stop the therapy. One reason behind its effectiveness is that it uses the unconscious mind to find the root causes behind why people eat unhealthily. It can also help them to form good attachments to food and think positively about themselves.
Indeed, clinical hypnotherapy is recognised as a treatment for an extensive list of medical and psychological conditions, including insomnia, depression, and chronic pain.
About 90% of individuals can easily experience a state of hypnosis – in fact, you probably experience it every day when you become absorbed in a movie, enter a pleasant daydream, or just before you fall asleep.
This very natural experience has profound benefits because it helps you relax, metabolises your stress response, and facilitates communication between the different parts of your brain.
When it comes to diet and weight loss, clinical hypnosis can help you to change your attitude towards previous and future outcomes.
When people decide to lose weight, they often struggle with the idea of giving up the foods they enjoy. They remember having fun and associating a change in diet with giving up things that bring pleasure. Getting healthy is often associated with feeling deprived.
Using clinical hypnosis changes the experience. The therapist will help the client focus away from the past and imagine a future where he or she has already achieved their desired weight. The therapy includes special words and images that make this future image realistic and vivid.
By using their imagination, the client can experience the future image as if it already exists. This helps them move their focus away from the unwanted habit to the new desired outcome.
A study by the British Psychological Society shows that people who use clinical hypnosis make better dietary choices, exercise consistently, and are able to maintain their new healthy lifestyle. Other studies indicate that they have better control over emotional triggers and exhibit new, healthier responses to food.
The result is a world where motivation requires a lot less effort, unhealthy cravings fade away, and willpower becomes your ally.
To learn more about clinical hypnosis, click here.
Sheila Menon is the Principal of the London College of Clinical Hypnosis (LCCH) in Asia and Australia, and the CEO of the LSCCH Therapy Centre.