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Creating an Environment for Healing
by Gaye Wilson, RN, MSN, CCHT

Hypnosis is a means of directly accessing the subconscious mind. Its purpose is to create a different emotional environment or mind set in the subject, usually regarding a specific topic or issue. Methods of gaining this access are many and varied but most involve deep relaxation, visualization and the achievement of a meditative state of mind. Once the subconscious is available, suggestions are offered by the hypnotized person to themselves (self hypnosis) or may be offered by a Hypnotherapist (hetero-hypnosis). Since the subconscious mind accepts what is offered to it without discrimination, profound changes in attitude, belief systems and behaviors can result if the suggestions are well phrased and offered sincerely and sensitively.

Hypnotherapy is an opportunity for people to effect changes in themselves, to create the life and world they desire. They can let go of modes of thinking and acting that no longer serve them and to take time for themselves to just relax and feel good.

Like a flower needs certain nutrients in order for it to bloom, our physical, emotional and spiritual selves need a nurturing environment to be healthy. Despite what is happening around us, we can--we must--create the environment we personally need to support us in whatever way is necessary. Some of what we do involves the outer world, such as having flowers, living plants, and perhaps a small fountain in our living space. It means, too, surrounding ourselves with people who nourish us in positive ways, and avoiding those who deplete us in terms of energy, time or spirit. What we take into our bodies in the form of food and drink contributes to our internal physical environment; making choices that provide us with nutrients for restoration and rejuvenation may be pivotal to maintaining wellness or recovery from illness. Providing opportunities for our bodies to exercise, to increase our heart and respiratory rates for a period of time, encourages our bodies to become stronger and more resilient. Being mindful of the here and now, really paying attention to where we are, what we are doing, who we are with and what is around us gives us a deep appreciation for the world and the faculties that allow us to perceive it.

No less important, and indeed, perhaps much more so, is the environment we create in our minds, hearts and spirits. Not only for healing purposes is our inner world's atmosphere of major importance; the quality of our day to day lives depends on how we feel . This is where hypnosis comes in. We can create a beautiful internal environment for health and healing through visualization, guided imagery and positive suggestions, all of which are components of hypnosis. Images and suggestions can be specifically tailored to address each person's particular issues And when a person visualizes themselves as well, happy, energetic and whole, it is a powerful way to communicate intention and desire to the subconscious mind. What is possible for the mind to accomplish is almost unfathomable; the potential is virtually limitless. When brought together with a healthy diet, plenty of rest; fun, loving relationships, and belief in something sacred and divine, the subconscious mind can become an incredible force! Many people have gained control of their weight, stopped smoking, reduced their stress level or even become more organized and efficient through the use of hypnosis!

For those facing serious illness, combining hypnosis with other supportive therapies can create a very powerful environment for healing, can help pave the way for other modalities to work even better! A caring hypnotherapist can help a person perceive their medical treatment as an ally even when it causes discomfort. By offering suggestions that the client will experience rapid wound healing, minimal pain and quick recovery, a positive expectation is created regarding the outcome of the procedure, surgery or whatever the client faces. At the very least, hypnosis allows you to feel really good, really cared for and really nurtured. For many of us, that's "just what the doctor ordered"!

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