Changing how you cope with daily stress, anxiety, and tension can be as simple as taping into that imaginative, creative, daydreaming-like state of mind for the power within, so familiar yet so elusive in the busyness of parenting.
Natural Hypnosis That Happens Daily
Have you ever daydreamed and routine occurrences are happening around you without you being aware? Perhaps you have been driving a routine route, to work or a store, and arrived at the destination thinking… hm, that was fast? Or driving and being so enveloped in thought, you miss a turn or just go right by the exit you needed? What happened? This is hypnosis.
Have you ever been so engrossed with a movie or book, that as sad or happy events happen to the character you find the same emotion within yourself? You may end up with tears streaming down your face, but that event did not happen to you, it was only in your mind. Do you find that time no longer matters when your brain in such a state of interest and wonder? This is hypnosis.
Hypnosis is bypassing the conscious “thinking.” It is not something that is mystical or dangerous. It is a state of mind that we are in and out of throughout our day.
Perhaps stage shows and Hollywood productions are the images that come to mind with the word hypnosis. Conjuring up mind control where the helpless victim gives up control of themselves. If that were the case, hypnosis would not much interest the medical community.
Hypnosis, contrary to the popular image, is not a state of sleep either, but a state of alert wakefulness. Science has not completely determined how it works but can describe its effects. Hypnosis helps many conditions and continues to show success. Hypnosis is now widespread as a useful modality and is emerging as an alternative technique for pain management and anxiety.
Alert and focused.
Hypnosis is a state of alert wakefulness and focused attention. It is in this state that you can reach the part of your mind that is mostly inaccessible to your conscious mind. It is amazing that you can, with simple awareness, decrease your own heart rate by 10 beats per minute. With simple awareness, you can raise the temperature of a hand or foot by a degree or two.
With focused attention in a relaxed state, your mind can accept specific suggestions. It acts them upon more readily than under normal conditions.
Your subconscious mind will accept the specific suggestions needed to motivate you towards your desired goal. It happens rapidly because that critical (conscious) voice lies suspended. Hypnosis overrides that conscious critic; the internal voice that says “you can’t do that…” or “you aren’t good enough…”
With your conscious mind quieted, an improved operating system, per se, installs itself there for your benefit. This is where you can create change; stop smoking, build self-confidence, or reduce anxiety, worry, and tension.
Parenting is the most demanding, challenging, and rewarding experience. Parents today are balancing so much, and time is a limited commodity. Once you recognize that hypnosis is happening often during your day, you can harass that familiarity and add specific suggestions, for your benefit, through simple awareness. (hint: stay tuned for future blogs on hypnosis for young children*)
Interested in taking care of yourself or setting a goal with this new insight? Hypnosis helps ease anxiety, worry, or fear and is an effective technique. It emphasizes the uniqueness of each person and ally to learning how you can recognize and make positive that uniqueness. It teaches you. You can change your views quickly when you change the ways of talking to yourself.
You may find you have an expectation or anticipation for hypnosis---just like riding a bicycle. Go easy on yourself. Hypnosis is individual and personal, so be willing to try a variation of technique or attempt a unique approach, or simply try a different day.
There are many reasons you might experience hypnosis as a spiritual floaty relaxing experience one day and the next feel you are wrestling alligators in your mind the next. Sometimes self-hypnosis is easy and sometimes you may need guidance from a hypnotist.
No different from most ordinary physical ailments, like a headache, that we routinely self-treat; it becomes obvious when we need more help. Hypnosis is not a substitute for professional diagnosis or psychotherapy. The techniques discussed here are basic tools for situational stresses, tensions, and anxiety.
Reading this far means that you are curious.
You must be ready by now. How can hypnosis help mothers reduce anxiety? Can hypnosis help you sleep better? Does this technique help with day-to-day struggles?
5 ways to install hypnosis to your parenthood- survival toolkit.
Each breath will make you become more relaxed. Just recall there are two different breathing, normal everyday breathing that is rather shallow and rapid, and deep diaphragmatic breathing that is health-ful and comes from the abdomen.
As you inhale, pull your belly outward like you are filling it with a balloon of your favorite color. Doing this expands your abdomen and allows the diaphragm to pull downwards and creates the “relaxation response.”
This breathing begins a cascade of physical changes that benefit your body. Your heart rate slows, oxygen-rich blood can flow more easily to all your extremities, muscles relax, and you shift from “fight or flight” to “digest and rest” state.
Even a 1-3 breathing technique with this intention can lessen your cortisol and adrenaline levels. This diaphragmatic breath stimulates endorphins that help ease discomfort. The health-ful breath calls forward melatonin, to relax and introduce sleep. It triggers your body’s internal natural pharmacy, allowing serotonin and dopamine, the feel-good hormones, to surge throughout your body.
These breaths are appropriate anywhere and anytime you feel tense or under pressure. It's beneficial to count the inhale and create an exhalation that is twice as long. In for a count of 3, out for 6. The next breath you can match or breathe in for a count of 4 and out for 8.
Gamifying your experience by counting can help you focus. Melting away the anxiety with each breath. This is also a great exercise for kids. They love counting.
“An anxious mind cannot exist in a relaxed body,” ~Edmund Jacobson, MD
Essentially for this technique, progressive relaxation means focusing separately on all the muscle groups in the body. Scanning, focusing, scanning, focusing, and noticing tension stored in each and releasing that tension.
It is quite fun to play with progressive relaxation in different ways. An active progressive relaxation operates by your tense muscles above their normal tension level and then releasing the tension. This allows you to focus your awareness on each muscle and the amount of tension it contains.
Imagine the tension in your body flowing like an electrical current or like magnetic fluid. You can use whatever image feels right for you. Move your internal scanner around the body, tensing and releasing actively. Active relaxation is fun for children as well.
Passive progressive relaxation does not require you to contract your muscles. You may find this easiest to do in a quiet, peaceful setting. It might be best while lying in the grass at the park or in the sun at the lake or beach.
Instead of tensing and relaxing, just build upon the natural feelings of relaxation. Breath in calm and exhale any stress or tension. You can imagine troubling thoughts as currents of water that are channeled out of you with each exhalation.
An anchor is something you simply do when you are experiencing a situation. An ordinary example is a red stoplight. When driving and your eyes see a red stoplight in your lane, it conditions you to remove your foot from the accelerator and place it on the brake. You had to practice this — to make it become part of your unconscious mind. Now, when driving you automatically brake when you approach a red stoplight.
Anchors are something you can create and then use later, to achieve a certain state. You can use anchors to achieve a calm, resourceful state.
For example, the next time you are relaxing, take a deep breath as you exhale and mentally say: "Let it go."
Then say to yourself, whenever I close my eyes, take a deep breath and say the words, "Let it go," my mind and body will find a calm, relaxed state.
Another anchor can be a tactile one. Pressing your thumb together with a select finger can create that sense of resourcefulness and calm when you need it in the future.
This is a great help for times when life just doesn’t go as you had planned. That can happen in parenting. Perhaps you’ve already noticed?
Anchors work like a shortcut icon on your computer to access different states or bring to mind ideas and concepts. We use this process in various ways to facilitate quick, simple change. As described, we can use it with your breath to find a more resourceful state.
The more you use it, the stronger it gets because your belief in it increases. Remember that mind power makes self-hypnosis techniques work. If you believe it will work, you will be right. If you doubt it, you will be right.
Want to perform a brief experiment with yourself?
Close your eyes. Now, without opening your eyes, how many windows are in your house?
The important outcome of that experiment is not the actual number of windows or if you got the number correct; but how did you arrive at that number? To accurately count the windows, unless you just knew that answer, you had to imagine them in your mind.
You used imagery.
There is more to imagery than just visual. We have other sense too. Sometimes you are hungry and can imagine your favorite food and you can start salivating. The images and visualization you create are powerful tools. A mental picture is worth pages of verbal suggestions. Imagine a beach, your favorite beach; you could likely write many pages based upon the things: the fresh air, the sounds, and how you feel at the beach.
Visualization and imagery can keep you healthy and aid the body in fighting disease states. Our bodies are more susceptible to disease when the normal balance becomes disrupted. Many influences can cause imbalances, and we know stress is a primary contributor. Stress causes increases in cortisol. Long-term stress can cause inflammation and decrease anti-bodies.
Imagery is an integral part of learning to relax and focus your attention. As you scan your memory, seek positive memories. Allow them to flood in as freely as the wind blows. Fill your images with bright colors, sounds, aromas, textures, and tastes. Allow the image to be as real as it can be. Make the picture life-size and step into the picture as it now becomes a movie.
Imagery helps develop a deeper communication with your unconscious mind. The subconscious stores all your memories. You’ll learn to speak to yourself with greater clarity and richness through your mental movie as you relive those positive moments.
Use your tension.
Relaxation is often the goal of hypnosis. However, relaxation is not mandatory for inviting a hypnotic trance. If you are in a moment of physical stress, tension, anxiety, and find it challenging to “let it go” and relax… use that stress, tension, and anxiety to develop your trance state, now.
Here is how you do this: you allow and accept the present state of mind—skeptical, anxious, cautious- whatever you are experiencing. Do not create conflict over the present condition. Accept what is in a non-critical manner.
Now think of an experience, a time in your past, where you were so involved with that experience your awareness for everything going on around you was irrelevant. Draw your attention to that calm, peaceful, relaxing - absorbing feeling of that moment.
Notice what you notice about that image. Really focus on the color and sounds. In your mind’s eye, step into that picture you’ve created. Now feel those feelings even more. Notice what you notice and make it real for you, now.
Accessing your inner knowledge will give you a greater understanding. Allow yourself to notice these new feelings. It’s good to recall all the times you were calm, peaceful and absorbed. It’s fantastic that you can change your emotional state so easily.
Your physiologic state will change into a more positive experience. This is how hypnosis can help with anxieties, stresses, and tension at the moment.
Hypnosis creates changes in your physical, chemical, psychological, and emotional parts yourself. You have likely heard “you are what you eat” and now you also know “you are what you think.”
After you have concluded with any self-hypnosis practice, one of the most fundamental applications is an appreciation for your outstanding work.
Visualize how you will use this technique in the future when you come across fear, tension, anxiety, or worry. Now, with these tools, you can become calmer and more peaceful in that situation or event.
“Any time in the future I wish to re-enter this comfortable, resourceful, calm state, all I need to do is focus on my breath, slow and deep, and I will quickly and easily return to this level of focused awareness.”
With every one of my 1:1 clients, individualized self-hypnosis techniques are a part of the session. Anxiety and sleep are common areas where self-hypnosis can be useful, especially in motherhood.
There are many other areas where self-hypnosis can be wildly successful:
So now you know.
I would love to hear from you once you experiment with hypnosis techniques.
Share your experience here. What area (s) of your life would you like to see results?
Hypnosis can help in many ways. Curious Minds should Stay Curious.
Boost Self-confidence • Lessen Anxiety • Grief• Cancer • Create Positive Mindset • Eliminate Limiting Beliefs • Improve Sleep • Manage Pain Better • Prepare for Childbirth • Enhance Performance • Heal & Resolve Grief • Change Habits • Weight Loss without Dieting • Smoking Cessation • Stress Reduction • Stop Teeth Grinding • & more
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