Can Hypnotherapy Really Help You to Stop Smoking?

Can Hypnotherapy Really Help You to Stop Smoking_

Quitting smoking is one of the best things you can do for your health. Being a smoker can make you more likely to be affected by ill health and can even cut your life expectancy. Not to mention that it’s a habit that takes its toll on your wallet!

There are lots of good reasons to quit but unfortunately it can be extremely difficult and many people find that willpower isn’t enough. This isn’t surprising given that smoking is an addiction and like most addictions, it’s not easy to break its hold on you.

If you have already tried giving up smoking and haven’t been successful, you may be wondering if hypnotherapy can be the answer.

How Hypnotherapy Works

During hypnosis, you’re in a trance but contrary to popular opinion, you’re not asleep or unconscious. Think of it as a very relaxed state of mind and it doesn’t seem half as scary.

You’re still very aware of your surroundings and most importantly, you’re also still in control of yourself. A lot of people are worried that they can be made to do things they don’t want during hypnotherapy but this is definitely a myth.

It’s true that you’re usually much more receptive to taking on board suggestions made by your hypnotherapist when you’re in this relaxed mode but these are used as a way to treat the issues(s) that you’ve come to hypnotherapy for, rather than as any form of control or manipulation.

Can It Help to Quit Smoking?

A lot of people have used hypnotherapy to successfully stop smoking for good – sometimes in combination with Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) and medication.

Hypnotherapy can help you to quit smoking in a couple of ways:

The suggestions that are offered to you by your hypnotherapist generally include forming a negative association with smoking as a way of breaking the hold that the habit has over you. For example, it could plant the seed that cigarette smoke smells like something you find really unpleasant and unappealing.

This approach can be very helpful for quitting smoking as it’s often difficult to change how you think about something when it requires a conscious effort to alter your perceptions, whereas hypnotherapy taps into your unconscious mind and makes this far easier.

Another option is to use a combination of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and hypnotherapy for techniques that are specifically designed to help you to stop smoking.

In both cases, the focus is on breaking down the negative beliefs and behaviours that are fuelling your desire to smoke so that you can find it easier to quit for good. These thought patterns and behaviours are usually the reason why you can’t successfully give up smoking.

The key thing is that you are truly committed to quitting. For example, if you’ve promised to stop smoking for someone else rather than wanting to do it for yourself, there is a good chance that hypnotherapy won’t be successful for you. If you’re desperate to quit though, you’re much more likely to take suggestions on board and break the habit for good.

 

What Really Happens During Hypnosis?

What Really Happens During Hypnosis_

A lot of people are reluctant to try hypnotherapy, often due to the myths that surround it.

Stage hypnosis tends to give the impression that hypnotherapy is all abound control but in a therapeutic setting, this is definitely not the case.

Here are some of the key things to know about hypnotherapy and how it could help you to overcome a range of issues.

Your Hypnotherapist is Not Controlling You

One of the biggest myths about hypnosis is that you are completely at the mercy of your hypnotherapist and that they can convince you to do anything they choose.

In reality, this is actually impossible. A hypnotherapist doesn’t have the power to tap into your mind like this and tell you what to do or act in a way that isn’t in your character.

They can make suggestions for you to use in the future but ultimately, your mind will decide whether to actually take them on board.

Stage hypnosis is a different animal to therapeutic hypnosis, and this is what fuels a lot of the misconceptions about hypnotherapy. During a stage show, the participants are carefully selected to make sure that they are the type of person who is likely to be receptive to the messages that they’re given by the hypnotist. Throw in the fact that the suggestions aren’t actually out of character for them and it’s easy to see why they seem as though they’re being controlled.

You Go Into Deep Concentration Mode

Another myth about hypnosis is that you’re “out of it” during a trance. A trance is simply a form of very deep focus and concentration, and it’s nothing to be afraid of. A qualified and well trained hypnotherapist can bring you out of a trance quickly and easily so there’s no chance that you’ll get stuck in a trance (as some people fear!).

You probably enter into some kind of trance everyday without even realising it, just by watching television or concentrating hard on the road ahead while driving. It’s also similar to the feeling of being half awake and half asleep as you’re nodding off.

It’s Not a Quick Fix

Some issues can be treated in just one session but for the most part, it’s likely that you’ll need quite a few sessions for hypnotherapy to be an effective therapy. It’s common too for hypnotherapy to work alongside counselling as a treatment option, rather than being a standalone solution, especially for issues that are long standing or have quite complicated factors that are causing them or exaggerating them.

 

 

Are High Heels Bad for Your Health?

Are High Heels Bad for Your Health_

You might love your heels but do you love what they do to your feet?

If you wear heels on a regular basis, you’ve probably found that they don’t feel half as good as they look.

They’re not the most comfortable footwear item to have on for any great length of time, and this can lead to pain, swelling and bunions. The problems don’t necessarily end there though as there can be more serious effects too.

Why Are High Heels Often a Bad Idea?

If you wear high heels a lot, there’s a chance that you could be storing up long term damage to your knees, according to research.

Wearing high heels forces your feet into an unnatural position, in which your body weight transfers to the balls of your feet and affects the balance of your lower body.  This is more pronounced with a thinner heel so stilettos will unbalance you more than wedge heels, for example.

It can lead to bunions (a painful swelling that can develop in the area where your big toe meets your foot) and swellings on the nerves between your toes.

It can even change your walking style, and studies have found that this carries on even when you’re not wearing heels. This means that the effects of wearing high heels can go far beyond the length of time that they’re actually on your feet.

In this study, researchers in Australia recruited two groups of women – some of whom had typically been wearing heels for at least 40 hours in the average week in the last two years and a control group who didn’t wear high heels very much at all.

Both groups were asked to move repeatedly up and down a walkway that measured the forces that they generated as they walked. The control group went barefoot, while the “heels” group went both barefoot and in their preferred heels. Even when walking barefoot, the “heels” group moved differently to the control group – with “shorter, more purposeful strides” and with their feet in a flexed position. This meant that their calf muscles were shorter and took much more of the strain as they walked, compared to the control group.

The women were in their 20s and 30s, which indicates that wearing high heels can start to have an effect earlier on in the life and that it doesn’t take decades to feel the negative repercussions.

Shorter, tighter calf muscles are common for women who regularly wear high heels as they adjust to the height of your heels and in some cases, it can cause the Achilles tendon to shorten to the extent that wearing flat shoes is almost impossible. It also pulls other muscles out of their natural alignment and this makes you more likely to suffer from pain in your knees, lower back, neck and shoulders.

Do You Need to Ditch Your Heels?

You don’t necessarily need to go cold turkey on your heels altogether but it’s a good idea to at least cut back on how often you wear them, especially if they’re your favourite choice of footwear.

The effects of high heels on your muscles and tendons can be exaggerated if the ones you wear are always round about the same height. This makes it more likely that your muscles will shorten to accommodate this particular height but if you switch things up, this is a bit less likely.

Stretching out your calf muscles regularly can also help to counteract the extent that they are likely to shorten.