Articles, Press and Media

Addiction – quit smoking in 90 minutes

By Paula Bendon – Clinical Hypnotherapist and Counselling Therapist

Are you one of the many people that have fallen into the ‘nicotine trap’?

Many people who smoke want to give up, only they don’t know how or have failed using just willpower or perhaps other techniques. Hypnotherapy is a very simple, safe and cost-effective way to help a person quit smoking.

The addictive and harmful substances in cigarettes can fool your unconscious mind (maybe for years), causing you to believe that you “must have that cigarette”. It happens time and time again. Cigarettes are constantly winning over your mind that wants you to say no. You feel despair, fighting the need to give up and the need to smoke. You are going around in circles, getting criticism from friends, family and maybe the worse critic, yourself.

Using hypnosis with a qualified hypnotherapist, you can work to break the nicotine trap and be smoke free for good. This may take a number of sessions, other see change in just one 90-minute session.

Hypnotherapy can reverse bad habits by communicating to your unconscious mind. It works to allow you to quickly and easily, while in trance, change your smoking habit. You will learn to live life with more energy, ease, more money and less guilt. You may even be able to deal with life stresses easier and relieve any social anxiety that may of been linked to your smoking habit. Please note, while in hypnosis you are not asleep. You are in a deep, relaxed state and are in control at all times.

Photo by Mathew MacQuarrie on Unsplash

Are you suffering from postnatal depression?

by Paula Bendon, Counsellor, CBT and Clinical Hypnotherapist

Postnatal depression (PND) affects many new mums, it is estimated that at least one in ten new mothers’ suffer from PND. Many mothers suffer alone and feel afraid to even tell their partner and many don’t even realise they have it at all and slowly suffer in silence. It can be a very distressing and confusing time, not the moment of joy you were looking forward to throughout your pregnancy and it goes against all the happy and idyllic images portrayed in the media.

Everyone expects you to be blissfully happy, so you cover up your feelings of despair and hopelessness and this often makes the feelings worse, suppressed and you put on a brave face.

What is postnatal depression (PND)?

It is a form of depression that starts from between one month and several months from giving birth. It is not ‘baby blues’, which many mum’s experience that usually happens a few days after the birth with common symptoms of crying and feeling sad for a few hours or a couple of days. Research shows that over half of all women who give birth describe their first feeling towards the baby as ‘indifferent’. The bonding process grows as the mother recovers and the baby is well and is here to stay.

Common symptoms

• Unable to bond, connect and nurture with new baby.

• Low, tired, lethargic, numb, hopelessness and unable to face the world, nothing is enjoyable. • Feeling inadequate or unable to cope and being unusually irritable.

• Feeling guilty, ashamed and angry. Wanting to cry and withdraw all the time.

• Comfort eating or not eating at all. Unable to sleep or sleeping too much.

• Overwhelming feelings of anxiety, depression and panic that are uncontrollable.

• Suicidal thoughts.

Counselling for postnatal depression?

If you feel you may have PND it is better to share this concern with helpful and supportive people, friends, family and your GP. It’s also useful to seek professional help form a counsellor/psychologist. It can be very helpful, safe, confidential and personal way to start to look at ways to overcome your postnatal depression, with a therapist who understands PND.

How counselling works

• Understanding how your emotions works after having a baby and why you don’t feel joy but depression.

• Fears and worries and self expectations linked to having a baby and learning to cope and love being a mother you deserve to be.

• Understanding the critical parent, and what is a ‘good enough mother’. Move from a ‘nice parent to a compassionate parent’. Using mindfulness and compassionate psychology

• Understanding hopelessness, anxiety, depression and irritability after having a baby.

• Understanding our hormones, nervous system and learning to be kind, soothing and compassionate to ourselves.

• Understand how you are feeling and how your baby and partner are feeling.

• Then ‘pulling it all together’ using counselling, mindfulness and self-compassion.

• Start bonding with your baby and enjoy the joys of motherhood.

Photo by Mariano Rivas on Unsplash

Is anxiety controlling your life? How to take control, feel calmer and happier.

by Paula Bendon – Counselling, CBT and Hypnosis Therapist

The vast majority of people with anxiety problems never seek help and can really feel alone

Who suffers from anxiety? – It can affect anyone, anytime, any age race or gender. Approximately 10% of the UK population suffer from anxiety. Many people with anxiety don’t know what to do and often don’t seek even though it casn be very treatable. It can be hard to share this with their loved ones and many live with this on their own. One in four people in the UK will experience a mental health problem each year. Women are twice as likely to get anxiety than men. Worryingly child and adolescent anxiety is on the increase year on year.

Symptoms – Physical and emotional
• Worry and fear
• Feeling overwhelmed all the time
• Panic attacks
• Nervousness
• Lack of sleep
• Avoidance of social situations and people
• Faster heartbeat and shortness of breath
• Sweating
• Shaking
• Dry mouth

What to do if you have anxiety?

There are many ways you can overcome anxiety

• Counselling – Talking to a trained counsellor who specialises in anxiety in a safe and confidential environment can help you talk openly about your difficult feelings, explore why you are having them and to work out strategies with the therapist to get to a much better place.

• Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) – With the help of a CBT therapist explore your thoughts and feelings and behaviour. Together with unhelpful negative and difficult thinking patterns which help maintain anxiety and it’s suffering. Then learn CBT tools and techniques to help yourself overcome them.

• Hypnotherapy – Is an effective, safe and efficient therapy to overcome anxiety when you are feeling overwhelmed. The relaxation techniques used in hypnosis creates an ideal mindset to help overcome and release the stronghold anxiety can have on our mind and behaviour.

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Clinical hypnotherapy and psychological therapy is effective in alleviating the painful symptoms of Irritable bowel Syndrome (IBS) and other gut related illnesses.

By Paula Bendon, Counsellor, Psychotherapist and Clinical Hypnotherapist

About one in five people suffer from IBS in the UK at some stage in their life. It is also believed it often goes undiagnosed due to the sensitive symptoms of diarrhoea, constipation, spasm pain and bloating which naturally people are not keen to share, so often suffer in silence. The reality is IBS is very common and the negative symptoms can seriously affect the quality of life of the IBS sufferer. Both the journal ‘Drugs and Therapeutics Bulletin’ (June 2005) and the NHS guidelines (NICE 2008) recommend ‘Gut Directed Hypnotherapy’ for the effective relief of the negative symptoms of IBS and psychological therapy including cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and Psychodynamic interpersonal therapy, if conventional medication fails. Not only do IBS suffers have to live with the uncomfortable symptoms of IBS but they often suffer from anxiety, depression and sleep problems too. It is not thought to be a psychological disorder but we do know IBS is made worse by stress but is not caused by stress.

How does it work
Hypnosis is a deepen state of relaxation which enables the hypnotherapist to make positive suggestions to you subconscious mind that are consistent with your values and help activate a reduction of the painful symptoms of IBS, you will be in control and it is not a form of sleep. It usually consists of 12 one hour hypnotherapy sessions. Clients will receive information on how the gut works and how it is interlinked with our brain, hormones and our nervous system. Then they will learn how to influence and gain control of their gut function, through hypnosis, self-hypnosis, compassionate breathing exercises, positive imagery and meditation. A ‘gut friendly’ diet will be advised as well as encouraging regular exercise and managing stress levels.

Quote – Dr R Valori, of Gloucestershire Royal Hospital began referring IBS patients for the hypnotherapy in the early 1990’s and found it to be highly effective. He said ‘to be frank I have never looked back.’ and ‘It is pretty clear to me that it has an amazing effect’ Dr Roland Valori, editor of Frontline Gastroenterology.

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Are you struggling with your weight due to Covid 19 pandemic?

By Paula Bendon

Hypnotherapy can help you loose weight simply and safely

In these very difficult times many people are really struggle to maintain a healthy weight and often find they are comfort eating, eating due to boredom, or are so worried and anxious are eating to suppress the worry. You are not alone many people are suffering quietly at home, but as we hopefully see restrictions lifted the harsh reality of meeting people especially if you’ve gained weight can be overwhelming, it can affect how you feel about yourself and gives you low self-esteem. An easy way to lose weight is to use hypnotherapy.

Hypnotherapy is especially effective for weight loss, it’s a safe, simple and easy way to lose weight and to maintain your ideal weight. People struggle with their weight due to so many different reasons. Often, we overeat, but we may not know why, some people comfort eat, others eat when they are stressed, unhappy, angry, depressed, anxious, lonely, bored, frustrated or happy. Many people know how to lose weight by eating less, eating healthier foods and doing more exercise, but putting that into action is not always easy, if it was, we would all just do it, losing weight can be one of the hardest things to do. The difficulty often lies in making the change to our eating habits, often we have all good intentions in the morning only to fail in the evening, or do the classic yo-yo diet. Hypnotherapy allows you to deal with this self-sabotage loop that are getting in the way of you losing weight and to stop the vicious cycle of overeating and lack of exercise. Hypnosis teaches your mind to change your eating habits unhelpful thinking patterns associated with food and emotions. It allows you to tap into your unconscious mind: acknowledge and change that behaviour and replace it with positive affective behaviours. It teaches you to take control of your eating habits. Control is about strength, flexibility and recognising that you can and you will be able to control your weight. Key to this programme is positive visualisation, developing a strong sense of self, realising your full capacity, increasing your self-esteem and learning to give yourself love and kindness. Mindfulness is also central to this programme. Using mindfulness meditation at home, we will reinforce the powerful state of awakening your senses. So stop beating yourself up about your weight and adopt a simple and easy approach to weight loss using hypnotherapy and change your habits for a life time.

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