Have you been thinking of trying hypnosis for a problem in your life? I have been a licensed hypnotherapist for over 25 years, although for most of my early life I was terrified of being hypnotized and thought it meant being in someone’s power. I was terrified that I would go to a scary place and not be able to move or come back. No way was I going to try it!
When I attended a weekend psychology training over 25 years ago I met Dewey, a delightful man who was also studying psychology and was an experienced professional hypnotherapist. He invited all of us who were wary about hypnosis to meet with him after the day’s classes were done so he could show us what hypnosis was really all about. I was greatly impressed with his demonstration and his warm personality. I knew that I could trust him if I ever decided to allow someone to hypnotize me.
At that time I was suffering from an intense fear of flying that had persisted for many years. I was so terrified of getting on a plane that in my mid twenties, when I decided to visit my brother in California, I traveled from New York City to Los Angeles by train! This fear definitely put a crimp in my life, kept me from vacationing in far off places and even kept me from accepting offers to teach workshops in other states and add to my income.
I tried every kind of therapy to overcome my terror including past life therapy. During one regression I discovered that in a past life I had been thrown off a tower in the middle ages, but it did not lessen my fear. I had overcome a number of other serious life challenges up to then and was pretty angry with myself for not tackling the fear of flying one more time.
Finally I decided to try hypnosis and called Dewey for help. I will never forget my first meeting with him. After some talk and relaxation, Dewey suggested that in a moment my right arm would rise up and not be able to fall back onto my lap. Since I was still not completely sure that I wanted to “go under,” I hoped it wouldn’t work.
I thought of raising my hand but nothing happened. “My arm isn’t moving,” I said rebelliously. He replied, “OK, then just lift your arm up.” Of course I could do that easily. Once my arm was up he said, “Now try to put it down.” OMG, it wouldn’t budge! I laughed out loud and said, “I guess that I am hypnotized with my eyes open!”
So you see, I never did have to “go under” or be in anyone’s power. I trusted Dewey and enjoyed our few sessions together. Then I tested the efficacy of hypnosis by flying from Los Angeles to San Francisco with my husband. It was only a little more than one hour, and I felt safe. The flight was uneventful. I wasn’t scared at all! When we arrived in San Francisco I immediately phoned Dewey triumphantly.
After that experience I eagerly learned how to use hypnotherapy in my psychotherapy practice and became licensed. As a result I assisted many people in overcoming fears, stresses and cravings. I still bump into a man that I helped stop smoking over 10 years ago. He couldn’t believe that he could give up a 40-year habit in 2 sessions! Whenever we meet he reminds me that he is still stopped.