Understanding the unconscious

A simple way to understand the mind is to imagine an iceberg – the part you see is only a visible reminder that the majority of the iceberg is hidden below the waterline. This hidden part can tear open a passing ship, even though it seems to have navigated the visible part. Remember the Titanic. Much of the mind is therefore invisible, but it has great weight and power. The ocean’s currents work on the hidden part of the iceberg – our society’s pressures and demands work on the unconscious, driving us to places we may not want or desire. Advertising and propaganda work on this unconscious level, moving the individual in directions to believe messages and buy products they not want or need. I taught students media studies for 20 years and they were always amazed at how images and slogans are designed to change behaviours and perceptions. Critical autonomy is crucial to being able to understand these messages.

Hypnosis is so powerful because it bypasses the conscious and allows the client to access their hidden mind. Many clients want to lose weight, stop smoking or worrying unnecessarily. That desire comes from their conscious mind, but these drives often reside in the deeper areas of their unconscious mind. Anxiety can present in many different forms, but often an event such as parental divorce, or emotional distance in childhood can leave an adult suffering from a vague sense of being ill at ease. Being told “Clear your plate” in childhood repeatedly can leave a client with a sense of guilt when they leave food – so their unconscious minds takes over when they have a plate with good food tipped into the recycling. Grandparents often give sweets to their grandchildren – the child associates the pleasure of refined sugar with a sense of familial closeness. The unconscious is very simple – it acts to preserve the individual. Changing the way the unconscious works requires skill and time, but the essence is repetition – listening to a hypnotic suggestion day after day gradually changes the unconscious – this can easily done through an audio file at the beginning or end of the day on headphones. I offer my clients these audio files as part of their therapy and many find it very helpful.

Try hypnosis – it ‘reaches the parts other therapies cannot reach’!

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