You’ve decided to seek help from a hypnotherapist.
So what now? You fire up the Internet and Google ‘hypnotherapist in my location’.
Then a string of plausible sounding people pops up and you choose one, right?
Hypnotherapy is a self-regulated industry, so almost anyone can practice anywhere with little or no training, experience or insurance. But don’t let that alarm you. Here are five steps to ensuring you have the right therapist at the right time.
1 What are the therapist’s qualifications?
The HPD, (Hypnotherapy Practitioner Diploma) is the gold standard for hypnotherapists. Its equivalent academic value is an NVQ4 or foundation Degree and it’s awarded by an independent accreditation body, rather than a hypnotherapy school itself. It includes a portfolio of evidence gathered from a minimum of 120 hours of face-to-face-teaching, supplemented by private study.
2 What membership do they hold?
There are a number of professional bodies, the largest being the National Council for Hypnotherapy, the General Hypnotherapist Register and the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council. Your therapist should have membership of a body which has a Code of Ethics. All members must abide by it and it’s your guarantee of professionalism and best practice.
3 The litmus test
Are their claims too good to be true? Run a mile if you see ‘Quit smoking in just one session, guaranteed!’ Reputable organisations like the NCH forbid their therapists from making such promises in the same way that your GP won’t absolutely guarantee your athlete’s foot will be gone in a week.
4 The touchy feely bit
Take a deep breath and pick up the phone. Rapport with your hypnotherapist is even more important than their training. If they can stand in your shoes and see the world from your viewpoint without judging, you’re half way there.
You don’t need rhyme chapter and verse, just some information on whether they can coherently explain how hypnotherapy works, what their success rate is for your type of challenge and what their rates are. If the conversation’s stilted or awkward, you’re not going to feel comfortable about going, so hang up and try again.
Hypnotherapy is safe, effective and suitable for a wide range of mind-body issues. In the UK suitably qualified professional hypnotherapists can be located on www.hypnotherapy-directory.org.uk