July 22

Can Hypnosis Work for Anxiety?

By Oliver M. James

July 22, 2020

Thinking Differently About Anxiety

When something does not feel right, our tendancy is to ask: what's wrong?

Ultimately question will likely involve Google searches or a visit to the doctor. You may then be told that you are suffering from anxiety. 

From personal experience this can be scary and it can feel out of control, you may have even experienced panic attacks.  This article is designed to help you understand everything in a way which makes sense and can encourage you to take the next step. 


The information in this post is by no means any kind of medical advice or diagnosis and will never be a substitute for it. 

 Understand Anxiety

Essentially anxiety is a feeling of worry, anticipation, fear or dread over a future event or situation. 

There are of course many circumstances where this feeling is normal, e.g. giving a speech for the first time, financial troubles, skydiving, exams.
This anxiety response that you feel is normal, it's simply part of your body’s automatic protection system which wants to keep you safe in the way it sees best. 

When Anxiety Becomes a Problem

With an accumulation of stress factors anything repeated over time has the ability to create a habit in the brain, and sometimes can seemingly come out of nowhere. 

Symptoms and Effects:
Sometimes symptoms can be physical and can include:

  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Sweating
  • Aches and Pains
  • Stomach issues such as diarrhoea or constipation
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Panic attacks 

These are just a handful of physical symptoms, everyone’s experience is different.  Of course, these symptoms can also have biological reasons too, and it can be wise to first check with your doctor. 

These physical effects are often found with psychological effects too and can include:

  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • More irritable and increased anger
  • Feeling stuck or out of control
  • Increased use of drugs, alcohol or smoking 
  • What if thinking (Worst-case scenario thinking), catastrophizing events
  • Repeated questioning and ruminating about your abilities and situation
  • Comfort eating of high sugar and high fat foods
  • Feeling disempowered 

What’s Wrong?

Any one of these symptoms can be rightfully worrying. But the good news is that today you do not need to be stuck with them and there are many natural, easy ways that can be used to help you get relief and take control of anxiety. 

If anxiety starts to hold you back and make you feel miserable and stuck, help is at hand. Many people notice it in some of the following situations. 

  • Job interview stress and anxiety
  • Speaking a foreign language 
  • Giving presentations and public speaking
  • Going outdoors
  • Social gatherings, interactions and networking
  • Going straight to the worst possible scenario 
  • Certain public places, like restaurants and public transportation
  • Driving 
  • Fear of flying

Anxiety of Any Level or Severity Affects Behavior
As a way of quickly calming ourselves down or to feel better, we will often resort to certain patterns of behaviour. 

  • Eating high sugar and high calorie foods
  • Cigarettes, vaping,
  • Anger and rage
  • Nail-biting

The above solutions can provide a temporary quick fix, but have a damaging effect on the body in the long term. 

There are also beneficial ways that can provide relief and even help lift lingering anxiety.

  • Exercise
  • Self Hypnosis
  • Meditation and Mindfulness
  • Deep breathing techniques

Common Anxiety Conditions:

Avoid self-diagnosing yourself with one of the below conditions without seeing an expert, the names of these conditions below can really make it sound like you have caught some disease, when in reality they are just categorisations which are helpful for medical professionals, but less useful when it comes to actually changing in the long term.

They are:
  • Generalised Anxiety Disorder
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • Panic Disorder
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Social Anxiety Disorder

Let’s put this list to the side for a moment. 

Beware of Labels 

If you have already sought professional psychotherapy or counselling , it’s likely you may have been told you have one of the above disorders and that’s completely normal. 

As a hypnotist, I approach things differently. Rather than focusing on what’s wrong with you, we help you find what’s good about you and allow that to become part of the solution. At an unconscious level we all have strengths and understanding that we can access and develop, that will make overcoming that anxiety easy. 

There is a problem with the labelling It leads us nicely into a very common language trap of saying to ourselves ‘I have this disorder’ or even owning it as ‘my anxiety’. 

Automatically, this is creating the idea that anxiety is something you own or something that is happening to you, it suddenly steps out of your own control. You own achievements, valuable objects, possessions. By our very nature, we don’t like losing things. 

Instead we can turn it into a ‘doing’ rather than a happening. It’s a very subtle shift in wording, but we can change the things we do, and not the things which happen to us. You might be thinking at this stage - “but wait, I did not choose this, I can’t help it”.  That’s true, at a conscious level, but on an unconscious level, there’s an automatic process that you are running.  Through a combination of techniques including hypnosis, we can interrupt that pattern. 

The Anxiety Habit Pattern

Any pattern that we repeat over time has the potential to become a habit, generally the more we try and push something away, the more we want it. Even things we consciously do not want. 

As anxiety intensifies, our stress increases which limits our capacity to think rationally can lead us to feel physical symptoms or begin overthinking a situation.

Your Brain, the Learning Machine

Some personality types will naturally find themselves having to deal with anxiety more often than others. We already know that some kind of anxiety is a natural part of life. We do, however, have the ability to get relief from debilitating anxiety that holds us back and that makes us feel bad over an extended period of time.

Inside your head you have the single most powerful computer that has ever existed, it’s your brain. Still in the 21st century, nothing can reproduce the intelligence and speed of the human brain.  Yet, some of the programmes running are not always the most useful or up to date.  Fortunately, this can be changed. 

How Does Hypnosis Work for Anxiety?

This article will have already given you hopefully the idea that there is a better future available for you.  Here’s how hypnosis can be used to help you overcome anxiety.  

I approach this as a fully interactive learning experience where you won't just be talking about the issue, you'll be making changes. 

Step One: Gain Immediate Control over Symptoms

In a live online hypnosis session, I’ll teach you easy to apply but powerful mind-body tools that can retrain the mind to do something differently. Think of these like little roadblocks which will begin to signal to the mind that something else needs to change.

Step Two:  Updating Unconscious Patterns of Behaviour

Here we begin to change the old pattern and create a positive alternative which is matched to your specific goals. 

Step Three: Insights and Understanding

You’ll get further freedom from the issue as I’ll help you find understanding of the issue and help you see it differently, and how you can avoid recurrence. 

Step 4: Self Hypnosis Training

Included as standard is training in self-hypnosis, which will allow you to take everything you have learnt and apply it to other areas of your life. 

In recent studies, hypnosis has been shown to be highly effective in helping people overcome anxiety. Unlike other methods, we are not just simply talking about the anxiety, we are essentially rewiring the brain. 

You can contact me here and book a free consultation to see how I can help you.