Maggie was unable to travel to have hypnotherapy in Salisbury due to being in the throws of the Corona virus pandemic. She wanted help with weight management, and despite us never having met and all our work together being done remotely over zoom, her results were still exciting.
Maggie was familiar with stage hypnosis and in her words, “Doubted it would be like the TV shows.” After her first experience which she had in the initial session, her first words after she opened her eyes were, “Wow, that was amazing!” Understanding how it feels creates a confidence to then really dive into doing the therapeutic work.
Over the 5 sessions we had together we uncovered the key root to her current eating behaviour. This was buried deeply in her childhood and was not something she was consciously aware of. But as we spoke about it, the logic became obvious.
As is common with weight management, whilst the focus is on food related habits, other changes also start to emerge
“It gave me confidence, self-worth, determination and helped me use positive language to achieve my goals. I am now confident, have lost some weight already and I feel energised and worthy!”
It is quite common for weight management issues to go hand in hand with low self-esteem. By working with the power of the mind, not only can the physical image change, but the clients view of themselves also changes. This then stops a downward spiral and creates a very powerful upward spiral. The better you look and feel, the more confident you become, the more you look after yourself and so it goes on.
Maggie was a pleasure to work with. I hope that post lock down, we’ll get to meet each other face to face. In the meantime, she will have the last word:
“Just to say that Caroline is a complete professional, whilst putting clients totally at ease. I am so glad I found her.”
If you can relate to Maggie’s story and would like to chat, please get in touch.
Anne’s motivation to contact a Hypnotherapist in Salisbury was triggered by her needing help to get through a difficult time in life. Her husband had suffered from 2 strokes, resulting in significant care needs. Anne found herself in a role of carer, whilst also trying to continue her busy lifestyle. As a result, the pressure and stress was taking its toll on her. She was starting to have problems with sleeping and also noticed changes in her eating habits leading to her gaining weight. She also had a stress related sinus issue which, understandably, was escalating.
Anne was curious about hypnotherapy and very open minded. When she was asked how she would describe the feeling to someone else, she said, “It is nothing to be concerned about. You are in a relaxed and safe environment. Tension is dispelled and reassurance is given throughout.”
We had 4 sessions together, in some of which we used hypnosis, in others we spoke about her future. The sessions were spread over a total of nearly 4 months. This gave Anne time in between sessions to use some of the techniques she’d learned and to feel the impact of them.
One of these was to practise a relaxation process. Clients are offered a personalised recording. By listening to this regularly, it can not only relieve stress but also enhance a relaxed approach to life.
By our final session together she had made some adjustments to other areas of her life which had reduced her stress. She was sleeping better, felt more in control of her food choices and her sinus condition was noticeably improved – something she felt delighted with.
At the end of our work together she expressed the following:
“I have been able to clear the wood from the trees, able to look at perceived problems and have a different perspective now. I’ve re-prioritised my life and am handling things better. It is like I’ve gone through a tunnel into the daylight and am leaving my negativity behind. Many thanks for steering me in the right direction, the relaxation recording helps me back to normality when I need it.”
We cannot predict what challenges lie ahead in life. When those challenges originate from those we love, it can often make the impact higher.
If you are experiencing something in your life over which you feel you are losing control, please do get in touch. I’d love to chat about how hypnotherapy may support you adapt in a way that can still support a quality of life for you.
Jude was referred to me by someone close to her and came with the request, “I want some of what she has found!” He friend had done some weight management work with me and at that point, lost over 3 stones.
Despite having seen the impact of hypnotherapy on a close friend’s weight loss, Jude, like many others, had concerns about it. “I was concerned that it wouldn’t work in that I wouldn’t be able to be hypnotised and that if it did, I wouldn’t get the results I wanted. I was also concerned about being out of control.”
This is a common feeling based on the TV and stage shows that use hypnosis but after talking her through the differences between stage entertainment and the therapeutic use of hypnosis she agreed to give it a go! “It was just like being really relaxed. You are still aware of everything and sometimes still wondering if you are actually hypnotised!”
Jude and I had a total of 7 sessions together. The results that she felt she had made included;
“Weight loss was slow but steady. I had no desire for or reliance on sweet, sugary foods and there was no more snacking between meals.”
Weight management through hypnotherapy is not all about abstaining from foods or constant calorie counting, it helps that part of your mind that controls eating to make better, more healthy decisions that also reflect what the body needs. However, there are often secondary benefits that come out of hypnotherapy:
“I now value the need to look after myself more and better protect myself from the slugs and arrows!” (Jude’s metaphor for the ‘stuff’ that life throws at us!)
Jude had a high convincer filter – a filter we all have but can be set at different levels and hers meant that she needed to see a good amount of evidence to trust that the changes were not just temporary.
Her final comment was: “The belief that it has changed my behaviour and that I will remain that way gets reinforced every day!”
It is very common that people come for help in one area of their lives but then experience benefits in other areas too. Bev came to me for help with weight management and along with success in that area, “I have more confidence, I have the ability to now take a step back from things that previously would have made me feel stressed and to feel in control of situations.”
This is one of the key benefits of hypnotherapy; you cannot only change an area of your life that you are not happy with, but you also learn a sense of relaxation and calmness that also makes other areas of life much better.
Bev had a total of 4 hypnotherapy sessions here in Salisbury spread across nearly 8 weeks. After the first therapeutic session she was amazed that she had had a chocolate bar in her bag for several days and not felt like eating it. After further sessions she had changed her eating habits considerably, was drinking less and exercising more.
Our eating behaviour often stems from lessons learned or experiences earlier in life that you would not naturally attribute to eating habits. For Bev this was also true: “The biggest surprise to me was the feelings and recollections that surfaced from when I was younger that contributed to my over eating. Things that I hadn’t even given a second thought to.”
And it is accessing the subconscious through hypnosis that allows these childhood patterns to be adapted to something appropriate to adulthood. Bev started to lose weight slowly after the first session and her weight loss has continued at a steady rate. The key difference between dieting and her new behaviour is that it was not a chore and the changes felt natural.
“I would like to say you again Caroline for everything you helped me with. The weight loss has slowed down a lot but I am in a new ‘stone zone’ , I will confess, I still pick up a size 18 in the shop forgetting that I am a 16 now!!!
It’s taking a little getting used to. On Monday I fly off to Corfu for a week and I have discovered some of my old holiday clothes fit me again as well as new ones I’ve had to buy, of course. Sounds silly, but I am looking forward to sitting in the plane seat and feeling comfortable.
I still feel as though I have a way to go until I will be happy with my weight but I am getting there and know I will be the size I want to be for my daughters wedding in a few months.”
Ann-Marie came to me to seek assistance in losing weight. She found herself snacking regularly and had got to a stage where her self image was also affecting her self-confidence and motivation.
Like many people who come for hypnotherapy, the only experience Ann-Marie had of hypnosis is that seen on entertainment shows.
“I was surprised how in control I remained whilst hypnotised. Following the taster session when I first experienced being hypnotised, I was much more relaxed during the process as I knew the myths about hypnotherapy were just that. It was like my conscious mind was watching from the sidelines, ready to step in if needed but happy to allow the rest of my body and my unconscious mind a chance to be heard. No matter how stressful work had been just before arriving my mind and body was completely relaxed through the whole experience.”
“I can be quite nervous meeting new people and being open and honest. Caroline made me feel completely relaxed and unembarrassed about talking openly and honestly. I knew I wouldn’t be judged; she just wanted to help me.
Ann-Marie started to lose weight straight after the first therapy session but she was surprised that she did not feel as if she was dieting. In her own words….
“ I am much more aware of my body and the elements that affect my choices. This awareness has helped me lose weight by making better choices, supported by my subconscious mind, rather than feeling like healthy choices were always a battle between what I wanted and what I knew was good for me. I am now losing weight in a steady, healthy manner, without dieting.”
But weight loss was not the only benefit she experienced.
“I have learnt how useful full body and mind relaxation can be, and this has been incredibly helpful in other areas of my life, such as dealing with work stress. I have also realised that I am strong enough to achieve my goals and that when I am feeling alone and somewhat beleaguered by the world I can recruit those separate and powerful parts of me to help.”
Ann-Marie had a total of 4 hypnotherapy sessions here in Salisbury and her weight loss had been consistent and at a healthy rate, losing 9 lbs over the month that we worked together. It was felt that at that stage, she had the resources and new skills to continue to reach her goal alone. Ann-Marie has the last words:
I also felt that the therapy was being tailored exactly to my needs, down to Caroline saying when she felt we didn’t need any further sessions at present. It was incredibly refreshing to hear work effectively being turned down as she genuinely felt it wouldn’t bring me any further benefit at that point in time.
I would recommend Caroline Cavanagh to anyone and would consider using her again.”
Jo contacted me because she wanted to develop a healthy relationship with food and to lose weight. But she didn’t want to spend the rest of her life on a diet to have good weight management.
Whilst her own health was a high priority for her, her main motivator was to be a positive role model to her two beautiful young daughters. Jo really didn’t want to pass on her own food issues to them. She had developed what we refer to as ‘the black lab syndrome’ – if there is food around, it needs eating! Every day it felt she had a battle with food.
In therapy, it is important to have a goal to work towards. Jo’s goal was to lose 2 stone and to get into a specific dress that was in her wardrobe. We had 4 sessions spaced over approx. 10 weeks. Hypnotherapy for weight loss involves developing new habits and these take time. I challenged Jo after each session to do some ‘homework’- simple activities that create new behaviours. Her success was strongly influenced by her commitment to doing the activities suggested.
6 months after our first session, Jo reported that she had lost 42lbs and the weight was still reducing. Here is her story in her own words:
“I am now a healthier, more active person. I have become more in tune with my body’s needs and make simple daily choices that simply didn’t feel available to me before.
My daily routine was focused around food…notably, what I couldn’t eat battling what I wanted to eat and a destructive pattern of starving and stuffing.
I am now more contented, at peace with food and generally have a calmer, more confident attitude to life.Thoughts about food don’t dominate anymore. I trust that what I put in my mouth will not only be delicious but also exactly what my body is telling me I need. As Caroline said, my body is not a bin.
We can now have crisps, chocolate and snacks in the house without the nagging fear that I might quickly stuff them all in in a bid to get rid of them. I can take or leave them and feel no guilt if I simply fancy a piece of chocolate.
Food has taken on a new place in my life. I think more about what I would like to eat rather than what I can’t or shouldn’t eat. Menus and flavours are suddenly more interesting. I drink more fluids and have a lot more energy.
Before I visited Caroline my life was on a very unhealthy destructive path. I feel like this process has not just enhanced my life by losing weight and starting to enjoy food but it has made me healthier and given my body a new form of protection.”
The thing that I love about hypnotherapy when it comes to weight management is reflected in Jo’s words – it is not about being on an eternal diet but having a relationship with food that is positive. ‘Treats’ can still be a treat and enjoyed but food ceases to be a constant focus.