I’m a hypnotherapist, coach, counsellor and now I have added Mindfulness to my list of tools to help people focus their minds, and make positive changes so they feel better. Mindfulness is very much in the limelight so I sent myself to a Mindful teacher, I completed a course and continue to expand my knowledge and skills in Mindfulness. I like to find evidence that supports my practice and it was clear that Mindfulness has a lot of research to support it and it can help people.
But I soon realised that there are many similarities and also some differences between Hypnotherapy and Mindfulness. So how do clients choose who to seek help and support from when they want to change something? I thought about what I might do if I was looking for a solution to a problem. Well, years ago I would just talk with others, gather information and then make a decision. Today we have access to so much information via the web that this wealth of choice can sometimes make decisions more difficult.
So this is just a taster of what I have found:
1. Mindfulness and Hypnotherapy have been around in one form or another for years.
2. Both practices are built on a wealth of evidence and research.
3. There are myths surrounding both Mindfulness and Hypnotherapy. Some people think Mindfulness is about religion and some people think Hypnosis is a way of accessing your secrets and making clients do silly things. Stage hypnosis has given a negative view of hypnotherapy.
4. Hypnotherapy and Mindfulness practice is developing.
5. Hypnotherapy has been endorsed by the medical profession for a long time but getting referrals from doctors to hypnotherapists can be difficult. On the other hand, doctors are more likely to refer to a Mindfulness practitioner.
6. Both hypnotherapists and mindfulness practitioners are asking questions about each others practice.
7. There is no statutory regulation of either practice but both use self-regulation and focus on helping the client with ethical practice.
8. Both Mindfulness and Hypnotherapy can help people to feel better and make important changes in their lives.
9. There is a big overlap but Mindfulness is about noticing and being in the ‘here and now’ while hypnotherapy can also add suggestion and regression to explore the future and the past.
These are just a few of the things that I have found out and I continue to add information to my list. So how does a person looking for someone to help them with their problem choose a private practitioner – Mindfulness practitioner or Hypnotherapist?
Firstly I believe that people need to know where the practitioners are and how to access their services. This means that Mindfulness practitioners and Hypnotherapists need to advertise their services so the client can compare. People wanting help can discuss their problem with their doctor especially if they have a medical problem. Recommendations and checking training and qualifications are important but as there are different training schools and different approaches sometimes that can be confusing for the client. Questions need to be asked to make an informed decision about which practitioner to use. For example, how long has the practitioner been in practice? Do they specialise in helping certain people e.g. people with depression? Are they members of any organisations? Do they have additional knowledge and skills in counselling, psychotherapy or practice in the medical field? Good rapport and developing a relationship of trust could be argued as one of the most important aspects when looking for a practitioner.
I now provide a range of helping services to my clients but if you were faced with the choice – a Mindfulness practitioner or a Hypnotherapist, how might you decide who to go to?