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Will this work for me?

29 Apr

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photography-woman-thinking-image9668962I recently sent out a survey and one of the questions I asked was, ‘Is there anything that stops you from trying hypnotherapy or Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT)?’

One of the most common responses was, ‘I’m not sure if or how it would help me.’

I hear this a lot from prospective clients. I even wondered about it myself before I actually started to use these therapies personally (I used to be a bit of a sceptic!).

So, what’s the answer. Can hypnotherapy or EFT help anybody?

My belief (and my experience) is YES! These are powerful, life-changing techniques . However, there are some conditions and in the spirit of complete honesty, I want to share them with you.

1) You need to do the work

I have said this before and always make it clear to my clients. You cannot just come for a hypnotherapy or EFT session, sit back and expect the therapist to do all the work (sorry, but it’s not a magic pill!)

Any kind of therapy is a two-way process. I often give my clients homework to do and you have to be willing to take action.

Maybe you’ve had the experience of reading a self-help book and skipping through the exercises the author recommends (ahem, holding my hand up here!) Did you get any results? No!

If you don’t want to do the work, you won’t get results. A willingness to change and engage in the process is a necessity.

2) You will feel resistance

I can guarantee that resistance will come into play at some point.  What I mean by resistance is feeling fed-up, doubting whether it’s working for you, procrastination or feeling like you’re going backwards.

The truth is, if there wasn’t any resistance you would have made the change already.

I must admit, as a therapist I love it when resistance comes up for a client. I know that might sound mean, but when someone starts to find the process difficult, it means that the real change is taking place.

I generally work with clients for six sessions and around session three or four, I know that they will arrive saying that everything has gone wrong. I’ve come to expect it, so I can secretly smile and reassure them that this is a clear sign that big shifts are happening.

When our norm (hey Norm!) feels threatened, it starts to play up. It might feel like we’re falling back into our old ways, but it’s just Norm trying to keep us safe and comfortable.

The good news? Hypnotherapy and EFT are excellent tools for moving through resistance and dealing with Norm.  We’ve got it covered.

3) The client/therapist relationship is super-important

I have worked with lots of clients who have seen other therapists and not got the results they wanted. When I ask what the experience was like, they usually say that they felt some sort of discomfort with the therapist.

Because they didn’t feel at ease, they couldn’t relax. If you can’t relax, then it’s difficult to go into hypnosis. If you can’t go into hypnosis, then you don’t create the change.

It’s so important that you feel comfortable with your therapist. You need to feel safe and supported in all of the work that you do.

This is why I always offer a free 30-minute consultation to any prospective clients. I want to make sure that they feel at ease with me and happy with the way I work.

4) One-session wonders are possible (but not the norm)

Often people have a belief, particularly with hypnotherapy, that they will have one session and ‘Boom!’, their life will be completely different and all their problems will be solved.

Now, I can certainly help specific issues in one session. Smoking is a common one. The fact is, you either smoke or you don’t smoke so we can switch between one and the other, usually fairly easily.

Other issues are more complex. When it comes to weight loss, you can’t simply give up eating. So we have to make changes to your relationship with food, the way you eat and the choices you make. This takes time and the change can be gradual, but it will come.

EFT can also help to achieve surprisingly quick shifts, but sometimes you have to tap on a particular issue for a while to get clear results.

If you experience chronic pain or a long-term issue, then I always recommend tapping daily (just for a few minutes) to create a change.

Sometimes issues aren’t clear-cut and therefore it’s not so easy to see black and white results.

I personally tap pretty much every day, as well as using self-hypnosis regularly to make changes and achieve my goals.

Is it always quick and easy? No.

Do I sometimes feel like I can’t be bothered? Yes.

When I take the time to do it, do I see results? Yes!

I might not see an immediate change, but I know that my life flows easier when I use these powerful tools.

Often I look back over a period of months, or even years and think, ‘Wow! I really have changed.’ Sometimes we can’t see change when we’re close to it. It’s only when we get some distance and step back that we notice the difference.

When I work with clients, my aim is to give them the tools they need so they can go away and continue to create change. I don’t want to keep the secrets for myself, I want to empower you. Once you know how to use hypnosis and EFT (and anyone can do this!), you have these skills for life.

So, does that answer any questions for you?

Have you been wondering ‘Will this work for me?’

Take action now!  Ask yourself, ‘Am I ready to do the work?’, ‘Is this issue or problem important enough for me to take action?’ and ‘Am I willing to move past any resistance?’

If the answer is, ‘Yes!’, get in touch to arrange your free 30-minute consultation and let’s get started.

The Surprising Connection Between Weight Loss and Money

22 Apr

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-image-frustrated-money-woman-image16282481How the same blocks that are preventing you from losing weight could be stopping you from having the money you desire
(and how to overcome them)

Do you ever have so many ideas flying around inside your head that you end up feeling totally confused? That has been me recently!

Although I’ve always specialised in helping women achieve the perfect weight loss mindset, this year I have been doing a lot of thinking about how I could help different women achieve different goals. It’s been very exciting, but I needed some clarity and therefore I decided to send out a survey to my existing and potential clients.

I wanted to discover what areas of their lives were presenting the most challenges and what they thought was holding them back. The results were surprising and enlightening!

Almost half of the women I surveyed said that money was the main area of challenge in their lives. This was no surprise; I personally have had my challenges with finances and I know many women feel the same. However, what was enlightening was that the stumbling blocks women talked about when it came to money were exactly the same as those I had worked with in my weight loss hypnotherapy practice over the years.

The struggles, challenges, and underlying limiting beliefs that were holding women back from being their ideal weight, were exactly the same as those that were preventing women from managing and calling in the money they desired.

I’m sure you have heard the idea before that our outer world mirrors our inner world. If you are struggling to earn enough, if your relationships are difficult or you have excess weight that is getting you down, this is a reflection of something that is going on internally.

The results of my survey showed that the inner landscape of someone who is struggling to lose weight is very similar to someone who has a difficult relationship with money. The excess weight and lack of money are simply symptoms of the same unconscious blocks.

So, what are these stumbling blocks that can stop us from losing weight as well as enjoying financial abundance? Here are the top three of the most common, along with ways to overcome them.

1) Block One – Lack of self-belief

Just as we often have an ideal weight in our minds, many of us have an idea of the amount of money we would like to earn. We are encouraged to set goals in all areas of our lives, clear, specific, achievable goals. So we do. We write them down and then what? I wonder if you ever think, ‘Okay, that’s my goal, now how the hell do I get to it?’

Perhaps you then start to feel anxious about what steps to take? Maybe you start to beat yourself up that you are not taking any action and you have no idea what to actually do in order to reach you goal. In fact, you can feel downright scared!

When we feel this fear and anxiety, it’s often because there is a little voice in the back of our mind saying, ‘You can’t do that!’, ‘Who do you think you are to try and be that weight/earn that much?’ and the classic, ‘You’re just not good enough’. Any of those sound familiar?

As soon as that voice kicks in, we freeze. We might know exactly where we want to be, but we just don’t believe we can get there. So a ‘what’s the point in trying?’ attitude kicks in.

We just don’t believe in ourselves. And if you don’t truly believe you can achieve a particular goal, it’s going to be darned hard work trying to get there.

Whether it’s a particular weight or a certain amount of money we want, we need to believe we can do it.

If this resonates with you, what can you do to boost your self-belief?

Well, the first step is to recognise that critical voice when it starts kicking in. What exactly is it saying to you? Write down any limiting beliefs that are coming to mind. By writing them down, you are starting the process of getting them out of your head, reducing their power.

The second step is to release these old, limiting beliefs. There are many ways to do this, including hypnotherapy and EFT. However, if you don’t have access to these therapies at the moment, you could hold a simple, symbolic ceremony and burn the piece of paper on which you have written your limiting beliefs. As the paper burns, put your hand on your heart and declare, ‘I choose to release these old, outdated beliefs that no longer serve me’. (This might sound a bit woo-woo but believe me, this kind of releasing ceremony can be very powerful – just give it a go.)

Once you have released the old beliefs, it’s time to decide which new thoughts and beliefs are going to support you as you move forwards. What positive statements and affirmations will build your belief and free you up to move towards your goals?

‘I can do it!’

‘I have all the resources within me to earn the income I desire.’

‘I am good enough’.

It’s time to start installing these new beliefs. Write them down. Say them out loud as often as possible and repeat them in your mind whenever you can, especially first thing in the morning and last thing at night.

This process can take time and you may need to go back and work through the steps over again, but you are reprogramming your mind with self-belief.

Take action now: Take some time to think about a particular goal that’s important to you. Visualise yourself achieving this goal, see yourself getting exactly what you want. As you do this, notice what thoughts come to mind. Are there any critical, negative beliefs that come up? Start with these and work through the three steps outlined above.

2) Block Two – Guilt and Shame

These are big ones! As women, many of us have feelings of guilt and shame around not being the way we want to be. Whether it’s in terms of the way we look or the money we earn (or don’t earn), it’s almost as if we have been programmed to feel shameful and guilty.

Maybe we were told, ‘Nice girls don’t ask for more’, so we feel guilty asking for the money we truly deserve.

Perhaps we feel shameful around out past behaviours and choices around money or food? In the same way that someone might binge eat in secret, maybe you have credit card debts or loans that you feel ashamed of?

Often we feel guilty about wanting more, whether that’s in terms of more money or more self-care. We are told, that you shouldn’t want more than enough, any more is a waste. So we manage on what we already have, we don’t give ourselves what we truly need and deserve. We don’t acknowledge our true, deep-down, desires.

We end up suppressing our feelings, scared to express ourselves, fearful of saying, ‘I want that!’, whatever ‘that’ may be.

I wonder if you have feelings of guilt and shame around money? If you do, one of the best things you can do is let these feelings out.

How can you do this? I recommend either talking to a friend who will understand, becoming part of a supportive group, either online or in-person, or working with a mentor who will help you to release these feelings that can hold you back.

Once any guilt and shame is out in the open, once you express it, the feelings start to lose their power. They are only toxic when you hold them in.

Take action now: Are you holding onto guilt or shame around money? Take some time to journal your feelings and start to look for someone who can support you. It’s important that you feel comfortable and safe with whoever you choose to share these feelings with, so start to explore your options and trust your instinct.

3) Block Three – Feeling overwhelmed

This is such a common feeling when it comes to either losing weight or managing our money.

Maybe your particular goal just feels too big? Perhaps you have no idea where to start?

When we are looking to make changes and work towards a specific outcome, we can sometimes click into anxiety and panic mode. When this happens, stress hormones can start to be released into our bodies. We feel under pressure and on edge. No wonder it feels difficult to move forwards and make the transformation we desire!

This feeling of overwhelm can result in procrastination. Although we have an idea of where we want to get to, it seems like there are too many steps in the way, so we find ourselves checking Facebook for the 10th time that day (sound familiar?)

Another method of self-sabotage is telling ourselves there’s not enough time. I hear this so often (and I must admit, I find myself saying it at times!) When something is important to us, we can always find the time to do it. When we say, I just don’t have the time, it’s another way of saying, ‘I’m overwhelmed, I don’t know where to start and I’m going into panic mode!’

So, what can you do to overcome this feeling of overwhelm? Begin by taking a deep breath and then start small. Set aside just 15 minutes a day and start taking the small steps that are going to make a big difference.

If you were trying to lose weight, you might use this 15 minutes to do some exercise. When it comes to money you could begin by finding out exactly where you are right now. Go through your paperwork (remember, just 15 minutes a day) and write down how much money you have, any debts you currently have and track the money that is coming in. Knowledge is power!

Create a plan of your next steps and use your daily 15 minutes to start moving forward.

When you commit to bitesize chunks of time, it feels so much more manageable than telling yourself you’re going to spend a whole day or half-day on something.

Take action now: Grab your diary and schedule in your daily 15minutes – do it now! Write down some ideas for your small steps and plan them into your 15-minute slots of time. Commit to taking action.

Have any of these blocks particularly resonated with you? If so, please share your comments below this article and let me know what action you plan to take. By taking the time to comment, you are sending a powerful message to your subconscious mind that you are committed to taking action.

Tweet: When we work on our inner world, the outer world starts to shift. It’s inevitable. @NicolaSemple1Tweet: When we work on our inner world, the outer world starts to shift. It's inevitable. @NicolaSemple1

If you are struggling with money at the moment, I am offering free 45-minute Blast Your Block calls next week to three people. These calls will offer you the chance to identify your particular money blocks and explore ways of moving past them, coming up with a clear plan of action. If you would like to step-up and claim one of these calls, email me at: nicola@horizon-hypnotherapy.com and let me know how you would benefit.

Are you ready to simplify your life?

1 Apr

simplicity imageAt the beginning of 2014, I picked a word to focus on for the year: SIMPLIFY

I often have a number of projects on the go,  I work with many different clients and I like to challenge myself personally, so often my mind can be whirring with different ideas and thoughts.   By choosing to focus on the word, simplify, I have given myself permission to focus on one thing at a time.

When we simplify, we can let go of that feeling of overwhelm which comes when our attention is scattered.

Many of the clients I see are experiencing a form of overwhelm and I know that it is a common feeling for many of us.

That is why I have chosen to focus on the theme of simplification this month in my blog posts and Tuesday Challenge videos.

This week, I am inviting you to try out the concept of uni-tasking.

You may be familiar with the idea of multi-tasking.  In fact, we are encouraged to multi-task in today’s world.  People are complimented on their ability to do more than one task at a time.  However, when we try to do many tasks at once, our attention is scattered, we can end up feeling stressed and we lose the ability to be in the moment.

In my Tuesday Challenge video this week, I encourage you to focus on one task at a time: uni-tasking.

Watch the video below and comment at the bottom of this blog post if you choose to accept the challenge.

 

Take Action:  Are you prepared to accept the Tuesday Challenge?  Pick one area of your life where you normally multi-task and experiment with uni-tasking.  Let me know how you get on, your insights and experience, by commenting below.

How to deal with feelings of stress or overwhelm

25 Mar

simplicity image Many of us have to deal with feelings of stress or overwhelm at times.  Maybe life throws us a curveball, perhaps we have a never-ending to-do list or we feel that those around us are constantly making demands on our time.

Whatever the reason, when we are stressed and overwhelmed, it can feel difficult to cope.  We might find ourselves reaching for junk food, caffeine, alcohol or drugs.  We might experience physical symptoms, such as muscular tension, headaches, low immunity or even chronic disease.  Stress and overwhelm can also impact on all areas of our lives in a negative way, for example, our relationships, health, weight, fertility and general well-being.

So, how can you cope with any feelings of stress and overwhelm you are experiencing right now?  One of the best ways I have found, for myself and my clients, is EFT (emotional freedom technique).  This simple tool can be likened to emotional acupuncture, a way of shifting and releasing any unhelpful feelings.

I often use EFT in combination with hypnotherapy to help my clients achieve powerful results.  To give you a taster of this wonderful technique, I have created a video specifically designed to help you with any feelings of stress and overwhelm.   You can watch the video below and tap along to feel calmer and more in control.

 

Please do comment below to let me know how you found this video.  If you would like to know more about how EFT can help you, get in touch to arrange an initial chat.

How to Establish a Gratitude Practice

17 Mar

Gratitude imageMost of the people who come to see me want to make some sort of change in their lives, maybe they want to lose weight, feel more confident or perhaps start a family.  This means that there is generally something they are currently unhappy with.  When we’re unhappy or dissatisfied with an element of our lives, we can get tied up with thinking about it constantly. We can start obsessing with how overweight we feel or the fact that we just can’t seem to get pregnant.  This kind of thinking can easily turn into a downward spiral and it can be difficult to see a way out.

When we’re thinking unhappy, fed-up thoughts, we tend to get more unhappy and more fed-up – it’s the way our minds operate!  So, I work with my clients to break that negative cycle and encourage them to start focusing on what they are happy with, to adopt an attitude of gratitude.  Maybe you’re not particularly happy with your body at the moment, but what are you grateful for in your life?  Perhaps you have a wonderful, supportive partner, or children who inspire you to be healthier?  How about all of the qualities you have that can help you on your way – your organisational skills, the way you motivate others, your attention to detail?  These are all things you can be grateful for and when we start to focus on feeling grateful, we automatically start to feel good!

Have you ever noticed that when you feel good, life is so much easier? You have more energy, you can get things done and everything seems more enjoyable.  Well, by adopting an attitude to gratitude, you will be creating a shift in your mindset which makes it far easier to get what you want.

This week, my regular Tuesday Challenge video focuses on how to establish a regular gratitude practice.  Watch the video below and let me know how you are going to make gratitude a part of your everyday life by commenting at the bottom of this post.

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