Right, as a trainee psychotherapist maybe I can provide some answers on this. Do not take my advice as that of a qualified professional.
If this guy has told you that what he will do in a therapy session will cure you or permanently remove your problem then boy is he in dangerous territory. If I did that that would be enough to strike me off before I even qualified. I had to sign a very long piece of paper where I promised not to ever say I could cure anyone of anything. A good therapist knows that the true agent of change is the client.
Hypnosis Cds and downloads are okay. But there is a slight problem. Some of them use the whole "you can now visualise a beach" induction which assumes that absolutely everyone finds the idea of being on a beach on their own relaxing. And if the induction starts making you feel opposite feelings to being relaxed then you may well have a problem.
My friends Adam Eason, Joseph Clough, Glenn Harrold, Nick Kemp, Steve G Jones, Viv Craske, Nicholas Finnegan, Roseanna Leaton do some great recordings. I get no commission whatsoever for recommending them. I do so because I know them and have seen their work and trust their integrity. Oh, and hypnoshop.com do some good downloads too. And the recordings from one of my biggest influences, Richard Bandler, are also good.
Can hypnosis make you do something you don't want to do? Erm...in a word: NO. If it could there would be no problem. You'd just hypnotise someone and tell them: "you are now amazingly confident" and they suddenly would be.
Does the therapist generate the state? Nope. The client does. The therapist is a guide. I've done this and in my learning I tried guiding one person in hypnosis to think about one thing but she was off having a lot of fun swimming in her mind (she told me afterwards). Indeed, being in a state of hypnosis puts you more in control of yourself than you may have been before.
Stage hypnosis works through selecting people who want to go up and have a good time. The hypnotist seeks out volunteers and sees what suggestions they will follow and whether they are comfortable having a bit of fun.
The reason you want to find a qualified therapist is because is not because of the hypnosis but because of the issue. Some people are trained in one thing and not another and a responsible therapist will, if they feel the need to do so, refer you to someone better qualified to treat your problem.
You also need to have some sort of rapport with the therapist. If you don't like the therapist's voice, it makes it quite difficult. That goes for hypnosis cds too. I'm currently spending a lot of time on my training working on my voice.
I'm going to say again: when you're in hypnosis, you are in control. Indeed, many people describe it as a state of heightened awareness. Some describe it as a state of heightened focus but come on, your mind is powerful enough to create negative fears and phobias to imprison you. That is a massively powerful force with your best interests at heart. Yes, it gets it wrong sometimes. But boy has it been trying to protect you already so it's going to do the same thing working in hypnosis with a therapist.
You've been in a state of hypnosis for a while if you've got a problem like SA or Social phobia. You've hypnotised yourself to believe terrible things will happen if you go out and socialise. You hypnotise yourself by imagining scenarios where you socialise and everybody hates you or acts badly towards you. Your mind keeps the fear going and the fear dictates how you react in situations. Then there's your beliefs and the filters you use to see the world, all hypnotising yourself into a negative state. None of that could have happened without your authority. Indeed, it gets its power because it has your backing. Negative experiences are so often encoded in a variety of sensory ways that they are enough for you to hypnotise yourself into a negative view of reality.
I've seen on youtube some very, very bad videos about hypnosis where people have shown disrespect to clients. This had nothing to do with hypnosis. One child in a school used the handshake induction and was very forceful with the girl's arm and a lot of people do get the idea into their heads that learning these hypnotic techniques somehow gives them power over other people. It does not and it cannot.
My friend, Adam Eason has a website at (www.adam-eason.com
) and he may be able to explain things in greater depth than I can.
It's about changing state and perspective. The conscious and the subconscious mind are largely metaphors that don't actually exist. There is some science that some people have used to suggest that the subconscious mind has a physical presence in the brain but that is open to interpretation and challenge. Basically, it's a metaphor of the mind or a metaphor for the mind.
The very fact that you're reading this means you're interested in hypnosis and the fact you're interested in hypnosis means you want to find out about hypnotherapy and the fact that you're wanting to learn about hypnotherapy means you're thinking about the many benefits it can bring you.