Smokers generally know that the habit is seriously damaging their health, but it’s another thing to take the necessary steps to quit. Hypnosis may enable the individual to cast aside the self imposed slavery to mere chemicals. One session may be enough to achieve that goal – because the addiction is not essential to life (whereas food, say, is a controlled addiction).
Several aspects need to be dealt with by the therapist. Firstly, the scale of the addiction is determined, and its duration. When does the person smoke most? What patterns can be found in their behaviour?
The dangers are pointed out to the protective unconscious mind and powerful suggestions given to counter the habit. Another feature is to allow the client to think and rehearse the previously unthinkable: ‘I am a non-smoker’.
The weakest point for an ex-smoker is when, in a friendly situation, someone suddenly offers them a cigarette. They usually have no ready ‘script’ in response, and so may be tempted to accept the invitation. In hypnotherapy, several such scenarios are practised so that the ‘No thank you’ reaction occurs naturally, like a knee-jerk response.
Hypnotherapists may also probe deeper reasons for smoking. A remarkable technique of communication with the unconscious is possible using slight finger twitches – any finger movement is a ‘Yes’ signal. It may be discovered by such questioning, for example, that the smoking is an unconscious way of exerting power over others, or seeking attention. These insights may be very useful in the treatment.
Certainly, people who stop smoking benefit tremendously and have a feeling of better mastery of their life. It also gives a positive and impressive message to those around them.
We offer treatment for smoking addiction in Egham, Surrey, London, etc.