Actors & Musicians
"We're frightened little animals. It's all about fear. And wanting approval. Wanting validation. And also it's about an environment where you can face what you're most afraid of – scrutiny. It's all about that, about overcoming fear – and overcoming is what makes heroes out of people, when you say – "I can't do it, I can't do it", and then "No – I'm going to do this!" Rhys Ifans, actor, The Sunday Times 16.10.2001
Hypnosis for Performers
I was a professional actress/musician for over 15 years before becoming a hypnotherapist and psychotherapist. As a result, I believe I have a special insight into the issues affecting performers. Whilst on a theatre tour, I discovered a self-hypnosis book that enabled me to choose my optimum state before going on stage. I was so impressed that I enrolled on a hypnotherapy course which enabled me to develop techniques for stage fright, memory and other psychological problems affecting performers. I have a BA Hons in Drama and Music as well as a Masters Degree in Psychotherapy and regularly treat actors, singers and musicians. I also offer special rates to Equity members and Musicians' Union members as I am aware of the feast or famine nature of the business.
Kingston Hypnotherapy can help performers on several levels:
Often a performer has a deep-seated belief that they are not good enough and they fear they may be judged negatively if they are anything short of brilliant. This belief then causes anxiety which can surface at crucially important moments such as stepping onto the stage or at an audition. They are unable to perform at their best and can end up sabotaging their own performance. When a threat is perceived (whether physical or a potential humiliation) there is a surge of adrenalin which is the body's fight or flight response. The higher functions of the brain shut down as the reptilian part of the brain takes over. It is only concerned with survival and will be more interested in locating the nearest exit than spouting an eloquent piece of Shakespeare or playing a piece of Mozart! Hypnotherapy can alter the self-defeating belief on a subconscious level so that the performer is then free to be at their most creative and confident.
Creating Characters and Conveying Emotions
Kingston Hypnotherapy can help you get in touch with your creativity. It can release inhibitions and enable you to access your emotions. Triggers can be created that enable you to come up with a desired emotion on cue. Characters can be created utilising the trance state for inspiration.
Hypnosis for Anxiety
Kingston Hypnotherapy offers hypnosis combined with Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT).
I worked in an NHS IAPT service using CBT effectively with hundreds of clients with anxiety disorders. In my private practice I have the added bonus of hypnotherapy which definitely speeds up the process.
Anxiety can be experienced at different levels, and although most people experience some anxiety when facing particularly stressful situations (such as a speech or presentation), anxiety disorders are severe and can have a massive impact on a person's life. Anxiety can be brought on by a fear of something that happened, or what we think may happen and dread happening.
Generalised Anxiety Disorder
Individuals suffering from generalised anxiety disorder often anticipate tragedy and worry extremely about family, money and health.
Panic disorder which is characterised by terror, which strikes suddenly without warning.
Social anxiety disorder
Social anxiety disorder is defined by extreme anxiety and discomfort in social situations.
Agoraphobia is the fear of open spaces, crowds, public places and/or travelling alone. It often starts with a panic attack.
Health anxiety is an anxiety disorder that is often seen as part of the Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) spectrum of disorders. Those affected by health anxiety have an obsessional preoccupation with the idea or the thought that they are currently (or will be) experiencing a physical illness.
Take a look at the Confidence page for Public Speaking, Exams etc.
Hypnosis for Public Speaking
It is possible to be perfectly confident in other areas of life but when it comes to public speaking or presentations, the heart starts to race, the throat tightens, the thinking becomes muddled and there is a strong desire to run away.
Hypnosis for public speaking helps achieve confidence by a process of visualisation and/or regression. Under hypnosis the client is guided through a visualisation of giving a public presentation while feelings of confidence and control are instilled.
I also work alongside Corporate Coach, Jeremy Todd, who can help with content, style and even video your performance so you can see the improvements for yourself.
Hypnosis for Exams
Hypnotherapy is a common method used to control exam nerves. The power of suggestion and visualisation techniques can help clear a racing mind and create a cool, calm state. This leads to increased concentration levels, allowing the knowledge to be accessed more easily.
Hypnotherapy can be very effective in reprogramming unwanted habits.
Hypnosis for Drinking Less
• Help you become very aware of the circumstances where you are drinking.
• Make you consciously aware of your drinking habits.
• Help you take responsibility for your drinking, and easily follow a plan for reduction.
Hypnosis to Quit Smoking
Hypnosis has been recognised by many studies as the most effective way of stopping. (New Scientist, issue 1845, 31October 1992, p6).
Kingston Hypnotherapy's technique is interactive and beyond pure suggestion, combining a hypnotic trance, NLP and parts therapy. When you began smoking, all the parts of your mind were working together but now it is as if some of them have realised the harm smoking is doing to you but other parts have not caught up yet! The subconscious is persuaded to reprogram these "parts" because smoking is no longer beneficial.
It is a one session approach lasting 1 1/2 hours.
(Hypnotherapy more effective that nicotine replacement http://www.complementarytherapiesinmedicine.com/article/S0965-2299(13)00210-0/abstract?showall=true=)
"Nicola, a short note 6 months after my session. Am still not smoking and feeling GREAT! I knew I wanted to stop and I needed to break some mechanism that held me down. Well, hypnosis has been the key to my success. Thank you very much." Antonio R
"I have to say since I saw you I have been doing brilliantly. I am now on a complete health kick, have been exercising regularly and not drinking. I could not have done this without the initial kick start I needed from your session. Thank you so much." Leah
What is IBS?
Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a "functional disorder" which means the symptoms have no physiological or anatomical cause which can be identified. It is not a disease and although the symptoms are very distressing there is no physical damage being done which causes the symptoms.
People suffering from IBS often have an increase in negative moods. These psychological factors may be a cause of symptoms or a result of years of disrupted life activities and frequent periods of painful symptoms.
Anxiety may be related to specific events and sensations such as meals, abdominal pain, or diarrhea. This can result in increased worry about the sensations, hyper-vigilance of symptoms and avoidance of any situation that they associate with the symptoms. As a result life becomes more limited as they stick to safe places and activities which can result in increasing and pronging the anxiety.
There is now positive research to show Hypnosis and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can have very a beneficial impact on IBS.
Hypnosis for IBS
Hypnotherapy uses relaxation techniques and suggestion to help reduce symptoms and create helpful coping strategies.
CBT for IBS
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy helps clients change their habitual thoughts, feelings, and behaviours that have contributed to stress and negative moods by applying a structured approach of exercises.
According to Albert Ellis, a famous psychotherapist, the 8 main unhealthy negative emotions we experience are:
Kingston Hypnotherapy addresses negative emotions using a combination of hypnosis and CBT so that our responses are appropriate to the situations we encounter. We all experience a range of positive and negative emotions as part of our daily life. For example feeling "happy" is a positive emotion and feeling "sad" is a negative emotion and both are healthy, normal human responses. However, it is possible to experience negative emotions that are out of proportion to the triggering events and unhelpful in terms of attaining our goals in life.
What is OCD?
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder has two main components: obsessions and compulsions.
Obsessions are quite different to the ordinary, everyday worries that we all experience in our day-to-day life. Obsessions are intrusive thoughts, images or urges that repeatedly appear in your mind and cause significant fear and anxiety.
Common obsessions include:
1. Fear of contamination by dirt, germs and viruses
2. Worries of having not locked the door or turned off the oven
3. A need for perfection and order
4. Forbidden thoughts, such as thinking about abusing a child
Compulsions are actions or thoughts you feel compelled to repeat, often as a response to an obsession aimed at reducing the anxiety.
You are unlikely to experience any pleasure or fulfilment when carrying it out and yet still find yourself doing it over and over again.
Treatment For OCD
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) has been found to be the most effective treatment in successfully tackling Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD). It remains the treatment of choice for tackling OCD by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) and specialist centres such as the Centre for Anxiety Disorders and Trauma (CADAT).
Firstly, you will learn about the cycle of OCD and what keeps it going. We will then look at what has led to it developing. OCD is a maladaptive response to stress and there is usually a genetic bias. We will then identify the theme of your obsessions and enable you to get some emotional distance from the content of your disturbing thoughts. If there is a compulsive behaviour attached then we can expose you to the triggers under hypnosis and then later in reality to desensitise you to them.
Techniques from Mindfulness and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy can also be used to enable you to step back from the content of the disturbing thoughts.
There is a difference between acute pain and chronic pain. Acute pain alerts you to a new problem that needs attention immediately such as a broken arm. Acute pain is a message telling you to concentrate on fixing the problem. The greater the damage the greater the pain level to ensure you do all that is necessary.
Chronic pain is sometimes a message that has carried on going long after it needs to, for instance phantom limb pain. Once something has been done about the problem the pain should go. If it doesn't then something else is going on. Arthiritic pain is useful to alert you to the fact that you have arthritis but once you have got the message it does not need to tell you every day.
The subconscious needs to know that the pain is causing a problem and it can be persuaded to check if the pain message still needs to be there. Then it can either turn the old pain message off or turn it down to an acceptable level.
Take a look at this link: OldPain2Go
"I've had chronic pain in my lower spine for thirty years which has often been debilitating and greatly affected my life. No treatment of any sort has ever helped even a tiny bit. But after just one session of hypnotherapy with Nicola it was gone. It's still hard to believe, but it has.
It would appear that the pain signals were being sent long after my body had recovered from the incident(s) which first caused them - they were no longer necessary and Nicola was able to work with my subconscious to switch them off. I would absolutely recommend Nicola to anyone with a similar seemingly untreatable pain - the change was instant and total." Tim G
"Between the stimulus and the response there is a pause, and in that pause lies our power and our freedom" Viktor Frankl
Kingston Hypnotherapy's treatment for phobias is one of the most requested interventions. The most common phobias are fear of spiders and fear of flying and hypnotherapy can be very effective in reprogramming the subconscious automatic fear response.
Phobias often start with a childhood misunderstanding when the child overestimates the danger associated with a particular situation eg. their mother screaming at a daddy longlegs. They are likely to conclude that the insect is dangerous.
Phobias such as agoraphobia or social phobia may need a deeper look at underlying issues to resolve them (see Anxiety page).
Dental Phobias: I work with local dentist, Dr Haj Barlow, who is particularly good with anxious patients. http://www.brunswickdentalrooms.co.uk/nervous-patients.html
POST TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER
Traumatic events can be very difficult to come to terms with, but confronting your feelings and seeking professional help is often the only way of effectively treating PTSD. It is possible for PTSD to be successfully treated many years after the traumatic event occurred, which means it is never too late to seek help.
If you have mild symptoms of PTSD, or you have had symptoms for less than four weeks, an approach called watchful waiting may be recommended. Watchful waiting involves carefully monitoring your symptoms to see whether they improve or get worse. It is sometimes recommended because 2 in every 3 people who develop problems after a traumatic experience will get better without treatment within a few weeks.
If watchful waiting is recommended, you should have a follow-up appointment within one month.
The aim of hypnotherapy is to unlock stored emotion using the trance state so that the trauma can be revisited and processed while exploring it from a different perspective.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is a type of therapy that aims to help you manage your problems by changing how you think and act. Trauma-focused CBT uses a range of psychological treatment techniques to help you come to terms with the traumatic event.
You may also be encouraged to gradually restart any activities you have avoided since your experience, such as driving a car if you had an accident.
Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR)
Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a relatively new treatment that has been found to be very effective in reducing the symptoms of PTSD. EMDR involves making side-to-side eye movements, usually by following the movement of my finger, while recalling the traumatic incident, or EMDR software when appropriate.
It is not clear exactly how EMDR works, but it may help the malfunctioning part of the brain (the hippocampus) to process distressing memories and flashbacks so that their influence over your mind is reduced. I have found it to be very successful in treating clients who have experienced serious assaults, traumatic births, car accidents and even earthquakes:
“Since our last session and the unbelievable thing you did with the EMDR I cannot believe how different I feel, it's truly amazing, for a few days after I questioned HOW it can work, in terms of the power of the mind etc, but then just started to relax about it and see I had achieved what I wanted to achieve which was to feel like ME again, relaxed, peaceful, happy yet strong enough to deal with life and its tests!!
I feel like me again…THANK YOU. You are clearly gifted to be a therapist in this field and I have done nothing but talk about how AMAZING you were/are your calm and kindness radiates from you and made me feel instantly comfortable in your company, considering my then condition and being complete strangers about an unknown science I think that’s pretty amazing. ” Rachael Beeton, victim of New Zealand earthquake." (2 sessions)
Sleep problems can include trouble falling asleep, staying asleep or receiving adequate sleep.
How can you control sleep?
Sleep is involuntary.
Sleeping should be natural, easy and effortless. And yet for you, it isn’t. Why? The more you try to think about sleeping, the more you try to force it, the worse the problem seems to get because for some reason your subconscious doesn’t want you to sleep.
To overcome this sometimes avoiding certain “triggers” to prevent the sleep problem occurring (e.g., no caffeine or alcohol) may work or using direct hypnosis suggestion to override the response, or pattern interupt techniques.
If it is more persistent then there may be an underlying cause that needs to be addressed with psychotherapy (CBT). If there is no longer any cause, there can be no effect.
Hypnosis and CBT for sleep problems
Hypnotherapy and CBT help to resolve and correct the true cause of your sleep problem - along with any expectation that you won’t be able to sleep.
"Having struggled with chronic sleep problems for many years, as a result of unsociable and erratic work patterns, I consulted Nicola on the advice of a colleague, who had had similar issues. By following the methods she gave me, which were clearly and very precisely set out, the problem completely alleviated itself within days. I was soon to realise that the other issues I had were probably sleep-deficit related and so, because of her treatment, could cease to be the major ones I perceived them being. I'm also convinced that the rest that I'm getting is somewhat due to the comfort of knowing that I have a empathetic professional to consult when necessary." Adrian S
Today more and more athletes are using hypnosis to help improve their performance.
Hypnosis can be combined with a variety of techniques from sports psychology, mindfulness therapies, motivational coaching, NLP modeling and cognitive therapy to work on pre-performance set up, performance enhancement and post performance reflection.
I can teach you the most effective techniques to significantly improve your performance using a multi session protocol beginning with mindfulness training before anchoring a state of optimal arousal and pre perfromance set up. Goal setting exercises build on these core skills to create the groundwork for delivering formal hypnosis.