High levels of anxiety

S was struggling at school.  His Mum contacted me to help with his high levels of anxiety which were being exacerbated by ticks and she had also noticed an escalation in obsessive compulsive habits.

When first meeting S, he also explained that he had a couple of phobias, one of which was a high trigger of anxiety, and also struggled with self motivation, finding the temptation to give up all too easy.

This variety of manifestations of anxiety is not uncommon.  A more generalised anxiety can also become acutely attached to specific things leading to phobias.  OCD can often be a subconscious coping strategy to control anxious thoughts by doing something that is real.  And low motivation comes from the fact that anxiety is very draining on energy levels.  Cumulatively, they result in a downward spiral.  And this is what we had to reverse.

How many sessions did it take?

S had just 3 sessions.  The first session with teenagers is a very gentle session where we don’t do any therapeutic work but build a strong foundation to progress from.  S had an experience of hypnosis and noticed that during it, his ticks reduced significantly which gave him hope.  We had two more sessions which were spread out over time, allowing S to apply his learning to his day-to-day life.

The result

In Mum’s words:

S is absolutely amazing! He’s been so much happier and his increase in confidence has been absolutely astounding. I did notice quite a difference very soon after his last session with you.

It’s so lovely to see such am improvement, and obviously such a relief!


Teenagers tend to be what I call ‘marmite’ with hypnotherapy – they either love it or hate it!  And if it is for them, the results tend to come quickly.  The benefit of teenagers learning these skills is that they then have access to them for life.  S will be facing the challenges of exams and more in the years to come but having changed his relationship with anxiety, he will have a mental strength that can support him through those tough times.


If you would like to know more about hypnotherapy for your teenager, or indeed yourself, please get in touch for a confidential chat.

Joanna’s motivation to overcome her phobia was her children. Due to her fear of flying, her sons had not flown before but both were due to be going away independently over the summer and she wanted them to feel confident in flying – so she had to be too!!

Like most people who have this phobia, it not only makes the trip itself difficult, but will impact them for days and often weeks before the flight is due, and then also effect the holiday as the fear of flying rises again for the home leg.

Also, very similar to others, Joanna did not really understand where her fear had come from, her fears had just escalated over the years.

How many sessions did it take?

Phobias are typically very responsive to hypnotherapy and Joanna used the ‘deep dive’ process that I’ve developed over the years to effectively treat these acute fears.  It is a 2.5-3 hour session where we use a range of very powerful techniques to change the mental association with the fear.  Whilst intensive, it works!

Joanna was also given a personalised recording to listen to post the session that helped embed the work that we did and could be used to help reinstate a sense of calm at any point.

The result

Joanna sent me photos from her flight out.  She was listening to the recording, smiling and felt calm, as did her two sons.  The younger of the two had expressed some concerns but by her staying calm, it really helped him too.

She can now relax when they go off on their own separate adventures over the summer and can also now plan her own next trips knowing that flights will never need to hold her back again.

In Joanne’s words, “I am amazed at how something I had struggled with for so long was dealt with so quickly.  I really wish I had dealt with this sooner but am now looking forward to be able to plan holidays anywhere I choose to go in the future.”


Hypnotherapy is very effective at dealing with phobias of all types.  Many people suffer needlessly due to embarrassment or believing they can never change.  It needn’t be that way!  For more information, please do get in touch.

R had a challenging entry into the world resulting in many invasive medical procedures and a full bone marrow transplant aged 7.  On-going physiological conditions have meant that regular treatments continue to be a necessity.  One of these is related to the need for regular flushing of the ears but for R, anything being put inside the ear is unbearable, resulting in R needing to be held down and the treatment taking a long time and traumatic for all.

R’s Mum contacted me to see what we could do to help her relax and explore whether self hypnosis could make these treatments endurable for R.

Due to them living overseas, all sessions were undertaken over zoom.

How many sessions did it take?

With younger children (R was 11) finding the triggers is important, whilst also creating anchors for them to use.  One of R’s triggers was talking about her ears, so we referred to them as ‘milkshakes’ and changed the anxiety into something funny as we decided which flavour we were working with that day!  Her anchors were around some cuddly toys, using heightened awareness of sensations in her hands to create the sense of control and safety.

In the first session we used a technique of dissociation – taking her mind to a place where she felt safe and she could see herself in the treatment room but not associate with it.  Over a total of 4 therapeutic sessions, we continued to overlap sessions with treatments. To support R, we also created a personalised recording that she could listen to on the way to her treatments which also helped her to relax.

The result

The following was received by R’s Mum:

Thank you so so much. She was like a different child. It went really well and best of all her ears feel really nice now, she says, so she’ll look forward to the next one!

Thank you for everything- really. Words aren’t enough.”


And from R herself (albeit a little edited!!)….


Today went brilliantly, I listened to the special video you made me on the way there and in the waiting room. When I went in, mum practically had to push me in because I was so sleepy. And luckily there was only Dr Dani and Mum with me so that helped a bit more. Then Dr Dani started and it was very easy and I had one ear phone in the other ear, still listening to my special recording.

Then we hoovered out the first ( her description of the treatment) and I was able to stay still!!!!!!!!!!!

Thank you for helping me get to this point Caroline, you have helped me soooo much.”


Hypnotherapy cannot only help overcome previous traumas but also help you face challenges in the future that cannot be avoided.  For more information, please do get in touch.

At 14 years old, O was struggling with friendship issues – something not uncommon to early teenage years but for her, it was affecting her sleep, her motivation and leading to heightened levels of anxiety. Her self esteem and confidence were being eroded.

How many sessions did it take?

Hypnosis is something that teenagers tend to respond to in a rather ‘marmite’ way – they either love it or hate it.  The first session is always a gentle session, giving the teen the opportunity to learn more about the process and experience hypnosis without having to pour their heart out in front of a relative stranger.  This provides a platform that we can then build on.

In the first therapeutic session, O was able to revisit previous experiences and see them from a new perspective.  This allowed her to see ‘ring leaders’ in a new way and her role in the interactions.  This new understanding allowed her to feel a sense of control once more.

The result

O returned to Boarding School after one therapeutic session.  Two weeks on,  I received the following email from her Mum.

I am delighted to say that things at school seem to be going very well. I have had no tears on the phone and she seems genuinely happy.

O has mentioned that she thinks it is a combination of the girls are being more pleasant and when things have been said she is able to take it as nothing more than a comment and she hasn’t taken it to heart and allowed it to upset her – fabulous!

At the end of a full term at school O wrote,

“Hypnotherapy has helped me to form better and effective coping strategies and has helped me improve relationships with my friends.  Thank you for helping me.”


How we feel inside can often be picked up by others.  This can result in those who are feeling vulnerable becoming targets to bullies.  By creating a sense of empowerment, it changes this vulnerability leading to different interactions and this is what O experienced.  And in addition, even when comments are passed, she has the self confidence to acknowledge they are just an opinion and she can choose whether she takes it on board or not!

Whilst this is a common scenario for teenagers, a lack of self-esteem and confidence is seen in adults too, leading to them being vulnerable to those that delight in preying on perceived weakness.  O has demonstrated that this can be resolved relatively quickly leading to a different quality of life.

If you would like to know more about how hpynotherapy could help you, let’s chat


Edward’s fear of eating in restaurants and eating around others was having a significant impact on his quality of life.  The thought of an invite to a dinner party would result in many sleepless nights and high levels of anxiety.  Even work became affected as he would do his best to avoid work trips that would require staying away with colleagues.  And if the trip could not be avoided, the anxiety would become debilitating.

He had done two CBT courses through the NHS but had felt little change in his anxiety levels.  In his words, “This is ruining my life.”

How many sessions did it take?

Over the course of 6 months, Edward had a total of 10 sessions.  He had a few sessions and then had a break to put what he had learned into place.  This would then be repeated.  This was because the issues leading to his anxiety had built up in layers.  We would peal back some layers and give Edward some opportunities to build his confidence.  For example, first going out for coffee.  Then a light lunch etc.  Each new breakthrough contributing to the confidence that the problem was reducing and he was making progress.

The final goal was to attend a wedding in Italy that would involve multiple restaurant visits as well as the wedding reception.  This was something Edward could not have conceived of doing in the past.

The result

Edward’s goal was to attend the pre-wedding reception and the wedding itself.  Everything else would be considered a bonus.  He not only achieved his goal but attended numerous other functions, managing to comfortably eat at each one and enjoy the occasion. And whilst there were short periods of mild anxiety, he had the tools to face the fear with a range of strategies to put himself back in a position of control.

In Edward’s own words, “Caroline has helped me reach a place where I feel I can now take back control of my life.  Attending the wedding was something that was inconceivable in the past, but now I am planning more trips away and actually feeling excitement about them.  I am now enjoying playing football and not worrying about anyone suggesting going for a meal afterwards.  I can react positively to a spontaneous offer to go out.  A whole new world of social engagement has opened up to me and alongside that, I am sleeping better and feeling more relaxed generally.”

Eating out is a big part of our social pleasures, but for people like Edward, it can be a source of huge stress.  However, it needn’t be that way.  If you can relate to his situation and fear being sick in public places, please know that there is hope and reach out for an informal chat with me.

Katherine had been struggling with spiders for years.  During most of the year it was something that caused her discomfort, however she dreaded the autumn months knowing that there was a high likelihood of her going into a room and finding one.

Her main motivation to address her phobia however, was the fear of passing it on to her children. This was a very realistic fear as often phobias are learned behaviour, passed from generation to generation.

How many sessions did it take?

Katherine elected to do a ‘deep dive session’ – an extended session where we use 3 key therapeutic tools that are proven to be effective with acute anxiety.  We start the session by paving the way – learning about the science behind hypnosis and developing awareness of how the mind works.  This can be very powerful in recognising that a phobia is not an illness, but more of a mental hypervigilance to protect.

Katherine commented, “I didn’t fully understand hypnotherapy before seeing Caroline and wasn’t sure how successful it would be.  Caroline fully explained everything.”

Many people have an impression of hypnosis developed from seeing stage shows or films.  This can lead to a fear of loss of control or lack of awareness.  So we spend time to dispel these myths and gain clarity on what hypnosis actually is – in Katherine’s words, “A deep state of relaxation.”

The result

After the session, Katherine left with an optimism that she certainly felt different.  She quickly had exposure when a spider was on her son and she did not react in the way she would have done previously.

I have noticed that I am already more confident at dealing with spiders and I am more conscious of my thought processes around spiders and my reaction to them.”

Katherine was also given a personalised recording that has two key objectives:  It helps develop the ability to relax which can reduce generalised stress and anxiety, and it also builds on the tools used in the session to help embed that work.  Whilst the autumn was a few months away from our work together, using it will help maintain this changed mindset, however Katherine added, “It is still early days and the true test will be in the autumn but I already feel I have more tools to deal with the 8-legged creatures!

Phobias tend to respond really well to hypnotherapy.  People often do not get help for them as they feel embarrassed at their reaction to what they consciously know is not dangerous.  However, a professional will help you understand how your mind is working and work sensitively with you to reduce and potentially remove your phobia.  It you would like more information, please get in touch for an informal chat.

A was just 9 years old and experiencing high levels of anxiety around loud noises.  At school, special steps were having to be taken every week during the fire alarm test which was escalating to A not wanting to go into school on that day.  Her anxiety was also spreading, leading to distress around the risk of car alarms going off and even her sibling’s noisy toys if they did not have an on/off switch.

A’s experience follows a typical pattern of anxiety and escalation.  In children however, this escalation can be quicker than in adults.

How many sessions did it take?

The age of a child is less relevant than their mental maturity.  In the first session we take small steps to identify if hypnosis is an approach that they can embrace.

A took to the approach easily and quickly and after just one session she was already showing signs of having changed her mental association with noise.  I then sent A a recording to help her learn to relax and feel more in control with the recommendation to use this as often as possible and definitely on Tuesday mornings before school.

The result

After just one session I received the following email from her Mum.

“She has had a breakthrough and it is completely down to talking to you.  Before seeing you she had to leave the school and wait on the field, last week she stood in the room while they set the alarm off!! I am so grateful to you.”

Deeming that progress was being made, we decided to continue to use the recording and then test out the other triggers for her anxiety.

“She isn’t as anxious about other noises now either like car alarms and is no longer having a complete meltdown when her brother plays with noisy toys, she asks him to stop but in a controlled manner,” added Mum.

Not every young child is a perfect candidate for hypnosis however equally, results such as those as A received are achievable and A now has an awareness of risk that will also be with her as she moves forward and faces other challenges as she grows up.


If you are not sure if your child is a good candidate for hypnotherapy, please get in touch for an informal chat and we can take it from there.

At 9 years old, B was experiencing high levels of anxiety.  She was a real worrier, concerning herself with things that most 9 year olds do not concern themselves over, and this was affecting her both at school and also leading to bad dreams at night.  She is an accomplished swimmer but was often feeling very sick on the way to lessons and competitions and was also dreading a school sporting event that was on the horizon.  B said her anxiety left her feeling “sad.”

How many sessions did it take?

The age of a child is less relevant than their mental maturity.  In the first session we take small steps to identify if hypnosis is an approach that they can embrace.

B was clearly a very bright little girl and was able to engage easily and quickly.  Even after the introductory session, B reported that she was falling asleep better and was feeling a little less anxious.  The second session is one where we start to use the therapeutic tools under hypnosis.  Children tend to respond very well as we are working with a part of the mind that is playful and imaginative.  We used age appropriate concepts to help her reframe the fears and create a mental resource she could use when she wanted to feel brave.

After the two sessions, I created a personalised recording for B to listen to that would help embed the work we had done together.

The result

I will hand that over to the words of her Mum.

B is doing brilliantly !!   

She is now going to bed without her anxiety attacks and is sleeping right through!! Bedtime is now taking 5 minutes as opposed to 30/40.

She did brilliantly in her sporting event and had no anxiety around it at all.  She ended up looking forward to it and was excited! She came in the top 5.  This was such a confidence booster for her, especially as she had not wanted to participate initially due to her anxiety. 

She had her first gala this weekend.  Yesterday she had lots of tears and didn’t want to attend, so she went into her room, listened to your recording, and calmed herself.  She managed to control her anxiety so well, and although she had a few wobbles on the way, she was fabulous, and once she had managed her first race, the rest went very smoothly, and she loved every minute. She was so excited about the second leg today, with no anxiety at all, and she again did so very well!

Further, much to my surprise, she has decided, pretty much on her own, that she would like to commence tutoring for the 11+. This was never an expectation, as we had always felt that the pressure would be too much for her.  The fact that she feels confident enough to proceed, is incredible.

She is happy and positive and hasn’t had a bad dream for several weeks.  We have seen fabulous results after so few sessions, and the recording has been a excellent tool, which she can access whenever she needs, often of her own accord.  We are most grateful.


If you are not sure if your child is a good candidate for hypnotherapy, please get in touch for an informal chat and we can take it from there.

Clare had a debilitating fear of spiders leading to her being unable to go into parts of her home, such as her conservatory, when alone in the house incase there was a spider in there.

Her motivation to gain support was not only the impact on her life, but an awareness of how her fears were starting to be picked up by one of her young sons.

Clare had not experienced hypnosis before but was willing to do anything to help resolve her problem.

How many sessions did it take?

Clare had just one session.  There are a number of techniques that reduce phobic reactions and the one that was used with Clare was a visualisation based technique.

Whilst many phobias, such as fear of flying or heights, can have a controlled exposure to the risk – ie you can control when to fly or go up a skyscraper, the risk of seeing a spider, especially at Autumn time is faced daily.  Therefore, this requires an approach that is easy to implement so it does not drain the mental resources.

Clare is a very visual person.  The subconscious mind, where fear is managed from, is very playful and we used this playfulness to imagine any spiders she saw as having  wellyboots on.  This gave her a mental strategy to apply at the trigger of seeing a spider, rather than her mind defaulting to the fight or flight response.  Her technique was to mentally boot up each of the 8 legs.

This technique supports the fact that the mind cannot tell the difference between reality and imagination and in Clare’s mind, seeing a spider with wellies on was not something that instilled fear.

The result

Clare is still not a fan of spiders, however….. “Although I still don’t like them, seeing them with coloured welly’s on takes the fear away.”

This is a significant result in one session and enough for Clare to be happy knowing that any exposure to spiders is something she can deal with.  She can now spring clean those corners of the house that in the past would have been avoided and garden without fear of spiders emerging from the shed – and her husband is happier not to have to do those jobs now too!!


For more information on techniques used for resolving phobias, please read on here

Annabel is a very bright young lady and performing very well at school.  However, despite her good grades, she constantly felt she was not good enough.  The standards she set herself led to high levels of anxiety that were then affecting her sleep.

She also had some physical challenges that were leading to fears around both her own and others’ mortality.  She required an operation and was experiencing very high levels of anxiety around the procedure.

As she was coming close to her GCSE exams, the initial motivation was to get her anxiety back under control.  We needed to improve her sleep and help her to fulfill her full potential in her exams.

Annabel came to the first session with a very open mind.  She had had some counselling before but whilst she felt it had helped with coping strategies, it had not helped her change her low opinion of herself.

She took on board the science behind hypnotherapy,  after her first experience of hypnosis, she described it as, “A deep relaxing sleep.”

Over the course of 6 months we had 8 sessions together.  Initially the focus was on perfectionism and she started to feel a pride in the results she was getting in exams.  This was a big change from anything below her perceived perfect score, being not good enough.

After her mocks, our focus then moved to preparing her for an operation she needed – something that she naturally felt very anxious about.

Shortly after her operation I received a message from her Mum saying, “She was amazing – really positive and calm.”

Annabel is now looking forward with excitement to a summer where she can fully enjoy her social life.  And beyond that, making more progress towards fulfilling her dream of becoming a dentist.

In Annabel’s words, our work together “relieved a lot of anxiety and helped with a phobia (of medical procedures)”

I am confident that this lovely young lady is going to use her new skills to create a very exciting future for herself.

If you can relate to the challenges Annabel faced, please get in touch and we can chat more