Curing stress with Hypnotherapy

Curing Stress, Anxiety, Habits and Phobias with Hypnotherapy

Foreword
In this paper I will examine and discuss the relationship between stress, anxiety, habits and phobias. I will also explain how a hypnotherapist can use hypnosis techniques to treat these issues.

Overview
Stress, anxiety, phobias and habits can all be related in some form or another. For instance, stress causes anxiety and vice versa. They are caused by fear and change. A habit can cause stress, such as when we try to stop a habit like nail biting and can’t. A phobia causes stress and anxiety. If we have a phobia concerning spiders, we become stressed and anxious, until someone can dispose of the spider.

Stress

At some point in our lives, we all suffer from some form of stress. Our life styles can be very challenging which can lead to us feeling stressed. Some people can handle stress better than others. Some people even thrive on stress in order for them to cope with their busy life – “it keeps the blood flowing“ or so they say.

Stress related problems can stem back to our parents. If they coped well with stress in their life, then it is more likely that siblings will also cope. If you have parents who showed the opposite, you are more likely to find the same.

Feelings of stress can be experienced as anger, frustration and anxiety. Anxiety can be apprehension or fear, which causes stress.

Stress is a negative emotional experience resulting from a person feeling a mismatch between the environment and their ability to cope with that environment. A change occurring in a person’s life can cause a fear of that change. How will they cope with it?. Examples are – moving house, divorce, children, weddings or bereavement. There are many things. Sometimes we recognise it and can deal with it, other times it is not recognised and this makes us feel out of control because we do not know what we should be in control of.

There are 3 stages in the process of stress:

1. Alarm – This occurs when we are presented with a stressful situation, for example a tax bill which is larger than we expected it to be.

2. Resistance – We attempt to cope with it and try to reduce the effects of stress, we find a second job so the income can go towards paying the tax bill.

3. Exhaustion – Incapable of resistance after repeated exposure and unable to find the second job.
If we ignore the problem that is causing the stress, it will eventually effect our bodily organs in time.

Fear is always the reason for stress. We already know that the subconscious mind is our survival mechanism, it will automatically create our fight or flight in motion. Although we are mainly discussing the ill effects of stress, we also need a certain amount in our lives in order for us to perform correctly. This is when we need our fight or flight mechanism.

The subconscious only deals in black and white. So if we experience something in the past and something similar in the future, it will react the same, whether the reaction is right or wrong.

There are different categories of stress, these being:

Hypostress
Lack of motivation, bored and unchallenged in a job.

Eustress
This is a positive stress that is short term and increases performance and motivation.

Acute Stress
Felt through tension and physical disturbance. It is treatable by various methods which may take up to 6 weeks.

Episodic Acute stress
This is the more damaging type and is a symptom associated with hypertension, stroke or heart attack, to name but a few. This can be treated but may take 6 months medically.

Chronic stress
This can be treated but it is a serious state that there seems to be no end to with associated medical conditions such as cancer or diabetes.

Traumatic stress
This comes for example from child abuse. This should be treated by a multidisciplinary team.

People with stress may also find that they are suffering from a psychological change which presents itself as depression or acute anxiety but unfortunately can’t always be connected to a specific cause. There may be sleep disturbance where they are so stressed and that, with the lack of knowledge on how to relax, means they are left with sleepless nights. Stress can also cause sexual dysfunction which can cause anxiety between partners.

Clients may have stress and anxiety due to fear of the dentist, doctors or having to deal with people in authority, for example the bank manager. These are all trigger signs of stress. The anxiety side causes us to avoid things such as putting off going to the dentist but when we can’t avoid it, stress kicks in. It’s like loosing a battle with ourselves which doesn’t help the stress we feel. It becomes a vicious circle, and sometimes desperation is felt.

Next page – “Curing anxiety with hypnosis”

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