Why Hypnosis for Stress Management Works
Stress. We all know it. We all experience it. Stress is part of the human condition.
Whether we get overwhelmed by our feelings, finances, work or school responsibilities or we experience chronic worry, relationship difficulties, major life changes, or just the pressure of living in today’s world, we are bombarded with stressful situations on a daily basis.
Our self-esteem and sense of security are constantly threatened from both within and from the outside, activating our stress bodies. Hormones are released and our heart and respiration rates increase. Most of us are so used to all the pressure and daily demands that we don’t even realize how stressed we really are.
And children and teens are not immune.
Every day, more and more children are diagnosed with and medicated for depression, anxiety, OCD, ADHD, ADD, etc. New illnesses, diseases, and viruses are discovered regularly. Studies show that about one in eight children suffers from some kind of anxiety disorder, and untreated children are at higher risk of performing poorly in school, missing out on important social experiences, and engaging in substance abuse. The American Psychological Association also states that the majority of teenagers report higher levels of stress than adults.
So what is happening?
While stress is a normal part of life and can be beneficial under certain circumstances, the constant activation of the body’s stress response systems over time can be harmful to both physical and mental health, often for a lifetime.
Frequent stress can affect our cortisol levels, immune system, brain function, and ability to concentrate. It can increase the risk of heart attacks or strokes, contribute to the onset of diabetes, weight problems, sleep disorders, memory loss, reproductive issues, cancer, nervousness, anger, phobias, isolation and avoidance of places and activities. It can also affect our relationships, confidence, self-care regimens, and the way we perceive and project ourselves into the world.
Stress is our emotional reaction to a stimulus, and we all react differently to various stressors in our lives. How you respond to the world around you will determine the fabric of your life.
Viktor Frankl said in his famous book, Man’s Search for Meaning: “Everything can be taken from a man but one thing – the last of the human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”
A person with healthy self-esteem, strong values, and a good relationship history will react differently and bounce back much faster after a break-up than a person with low self-esteem who is dependent on his or her partner or has no goals or vision for the future. He or she might stop eating, become depressed and, in extreme cases, even threaten suicide.
Or take another situation, job loss. Someone with a good retirement or savings account will react much differently than someone who has no savings at all and lives paycheck to paycheck.
In both cases, we have the same external events, but two very diverse responses.
Hypnotherapy Identifies the Underlying Cause of Stress
Stress is determined by a number of factors, including our conditioning and belief systems and their associated emotional pressures. So it is not the external stimulus that is the cause of stress, it is our reaction to the stimulus.
While it is important to find ways to reduce and control stress, it is critical to find and remove the cause of stress – the internal events that create our reactions.
A professional hypnotherapist can help you change the associations and emotional responses that trigger stress and help you form new habits and patterns that help you deal with it much more effectively.
In the same way that stress tolerance varies from person to person, how you respond to sensory input varies as well. What helps me manage stress might not work as well for you. Fortunately, there are several techniques you can try in order to manage stress. But identifying the underlying cause of your reaction to difficult events in life is the key to your long-term success.
Stress Reduction Techniques
Here are some techniques and ideas to reduce stress (while you decide to get professional help to remove the cause of stress once and for all):
- Choose your response to triggers and stress. Choose to be in control of how you feel and/or react. Don’t let outside circumstances control you.
- Change the context of the stressful situation so you can see it from a different perspective. Give it a different significance and meaning. For example, if someone cuts you off in traffic, try imagining that the driver is rushing to the hospital to deal with a life or death emergency.
- Reduce exposure to extremely stressful conditions whenever you have a choice.
- Build and work on supportive relationships and social interactions.
- Foods can improve or darken your mood and impact your energy level. What you eat can also affect your ability to cope with life’s stressors. Make healthy choices. Eat nutritious foods that energize you: protein, fiber, and healthy fats; avoid processed foods, carbs, and sugar that can drag you down. Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of liquids, especially water, but limit alcohol and caffeine consumption.
- Have confidence in your ability to handle life’s challenges. Breathe deeply and realize that you do have control over your life.
- Process your emotions. Don’t repress or avoid them. Suppressed feelings will manifest as irritability, mood swings, tension, heartaches, etc., which will only compound your stress.
- Find ways to express your emotions in healthy ways and let go of negativity. The more you are able to let roll off your shoulders, the less prone you will be to stress.
- Stay positive. Positive people tend to embrace challenges more easily, maintain a good sense of humor, and accept change as an inevitable part of life.
- Look for the lesson in everything. Challenging or difficult life events are great opportunities to grow, experience, expand and develop.
- Find activities that relax and calm you: exercise, enjoy the outdoors, spend time with your pet or loved ones, write in your journal, read a book, meditate. When we are in a relaxed inner state, our minds are clearer and we tend to make better decisions and find better solutions.
- Stop comparing yourself and your life with others’. Everyone is different. It would be a pretty boring world otherwise. Embrace your uniqueness and gifts. Be the best you you can be.
- Do something nice for someone else. Contribution takes the focus off of you and often reveals a bigger picture.
- Change your self-talk from negative into a positive and encouraging internal dialogue. Be more patient and gentle with yourself.
- Get plenty of rest. There is truly something to the old saying, “Things will look better in the morning.”
If stress is taking a toll on your life, health, or relationships, you owe it to yourself to seek a solution. Hypnosis to relieve stress and the underlying cause of stress has worked for many individuals when other options have failed.
If you have questions about hypnotherapy, how it works, or about our services, please call and schedule a free consultation. We are here to help!
Wishing you much success,
Beatrix Wagner C.Ht.