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.