The type of Cognitive Behaviour therapy I use is based on REBT (rational emotive behaviour therapy) and by combining it with hypnosis, I bring together two powerful therapies. CBT aims to get to the bottom of your issues by identifying the unhealthy negative beliefs you might hold about yourself in any specific situation or life in general.
It is these beliefs, which consciously, you may be unaware of, that lead you to act, think and feel in a particular way to an event.
Think of an iceberg (not the lettuce!) you only see a small proportion of it above the sea. Well that is a bit like your unconscious beliefs, they lie under the water, out of sight, because of that we tend to think that an event or person has ‘made’ us or ‘caused’ us to feel that way. However, it is what goes on inside us in response to their behaviour or what happened in the event that causes our emotional and behavioural reaction.
The emotions are paired, for example depression and sadness, anxiety and concern. Each of these emotions has a corresponding set of thoughts and behaviours or symptoms that people may say, do or experience and these are triggered by our underlying unhealthy negative beliefs, such as “I must not be rejected, it would be awful and I couldn’t bear it and it would prove I am unlovable”.
The aim of Cognitive Behaviour Hypnotherapy is to help you move from a negative unhealthy belief and emotion to a healthier belief and emotion. It does not necessarily mean that you will be a super ‘happy clappy’ positive thinker but able to deal with issues more constructively, flexibly and therefore healthily.
For example, I see a number of clients who come for help with anxiety.
When you are feeling anxious, what are you thinking about? You are thinking about something bad or threatening that might happen in the future? When you think of that event, what are you saying to yourself? What does that mean to you?
Let’s take an example, perhaps you’d say “I hope I don’t faint on the train, if I did it would be awful, I’d be so embarrassed, I couldn’t bear the thought of all those people seeing me like that, what would they think of me?”
What do you think the person in the example might believe about herself in that particular situation? She believes that she could not bear to be embarrassed, that it would be awful and people would think her less of as a person.
Sometimes it is almost as if the sentence has not been completed - the belief stays unvoiced. It is almost as though you want to add “…. and if they did it means that I am silly and I must not be thought of as silly” to the sentence above. This is just an example of how someone’s beliefs affect their behaviours.
Our beliefs about who we are and our world have been learned and developed as we grow up. For instance, we may have been told as a child that we were stupid because we could not do something and that belief ‘stuck’. It may be that something happened as a child, like being bullied, and since then we have had difficulties in situations where we are meeting new people because we believe we are vulnerable and we must not be vulnerable.
As a child, we do not know these influences are happening and as we grow, the beliefs we hold about ourselves become more unconscious, so that as an adult when someone may say or do something that triggers a reaction and we don’t know why, we say the event or person caused us to feel that way.
There are unhealthy beliefs and healthy beliefs. Unhealthy ones are rigid, irrational and contain a Must or Demand about what should/should not happen or ought/ought not happen.
Healthy beliefs are flexible, rational and state a preference or choice; we use words like prefer, like, desire, wish, etc. As human beings, we are really good at turning ‘want’ into ‘must’, ‘like to’ into ‘have to’ or ‘might’ into ‘should’.
So if you catch yourself saying I must, I ought, I should – are you creating a demand for yourself that stems from a negative belief?
For help contact me via the contact page or phone 0790 5735457.
Further Info: How Does CBH work?