Hypnotherapy and NLP can bring about lasting changes to the way we think, feel and behave and many clients who come to see me for hypnotherapy and NLP tell me that they believe that they cannot change – they will use the limiting belief that their current situation or problem is down to the unalterable fact “it’s just the way I am” as if they have absolutely no control over the way they think, feel and behave.
In fact, we are all constantly adapting to changes and controlling how we respond, and have been doing since we were babies. For example, if you’re a driver, think back to the last time you changed your car – some controls would have been in a different place to your previous car and you had to get used to that -- maybe you washed your windscreen a few times when you meant to indicate you were about to turn, but you soon got used to the new position and they became natural to you.
The same happens when we re-organise a room – first we go to the ‘old’ place for things, then we get used to the new layout. Changes happen all the time – new jobs, new homes, new fashions. Each at first seems strange, and then becomes second nature. We adapt our behaviour naturally.
We also adapt the way we think and feel about things. For some people, new things often arouse suspicion or distrust, but as familiarity takes hold, these feelings are generally replaced with more positive ones. Similarly, nervousness and fear in response to certain situations and objects can be replaced with confidence and acceptance. A common example is the first time you ever have to speak to an audience – many find this a nerve-wracking experience. However, if it becomes a common part of their life, the nervousness usually fades into the background and such occasions become run-of-the-mill.
So, when a person says to me that they are unable to change, it more usually means that they haven’t yet found the right motivation to change and/or they are gaining something from their current position which they don’t know how to get in some other, more positive way. That’s what stops change always being easy. Finding the motivation to change and knowing how to keep the positives can be tricky things to work out alone – your conscious mind will keep thinking the old thoughts and providing you with the old excuses and so take you down the old route of your behaviour.
That’s why hypnotherapy is a fabulous tool for supporting changes in feelings, thoughts and behaviours. Working with the subconscious, hypnotherapy can enable you to unearth those ‘secondary gains’ that your current situation is providing and so help you come up with other ways of getting these while freeing you to change. Hypnotherapy can also increase your motivation to move towards the new, positive state you want and enable you to manage the changes calmly.
For a final example of how changes can be absorbed by people and whole societies just look around you at the technology you have at your fingertips – the machine you’re reading this on and could instantly send a reply with – wherever you are in the World, the chip and pin card you buy your groceries with and the mobile phone that keeps you in touch even when you’re in the middle of nowhere. Less than a couple of decades ago these things were almost unimaginable, now most of us take them for granted – and they have changed how we communicate, make friends and do our everyday business.
Internal changes might seem more challenging, but they involve essentially the same processes -- and can have the same transforming results.