Weight And Our Mindset

Contrary to popular belief positive thinking can be detrimental to achieving our goals!

During the 90’s it was discovered that a group of lady dieters who had a positive attitude to losing weight did worse than others who were more pessimistic! This was at a time when positive thinking was thought to be the way to achieve anything our hearts desired! And we still say to friends and children think positively, believe in your goals and you can do anything!!

Studies were done over the next 20 years on the effects of positive thinking and reaching our goals. Findings were dismissed at first but, over time more and more evidence showed that positive thinking alone just doesn’t work, and this is because our brain doesn’t know the difference between imagination and reality.

Think of a time when something bad happened to you or someone you love; you can recall that feeling vividly?  The same is true when we think about special times in our lives, maybe the birth of a child or falling in love. Take a minute to enjoy that happy memory.

Now I am not saying that positive thinking is a bad thing by any stretch of the imagination Positive thinking is helpful to increase low mood, but, it can also trick our brain into thinking it achieved something already. So the evidence shows we are less motivated to carry out our goals.  The brain likes to automate everything we do, think, or feel. For example, when we learned to ride a bike or drive a car, at first, we thought we would never learn and how hard it was, but now you don’t give it a second thought. Imagine just how exhausted we would be if we had to think about every move we made. The same thing happens with our habits, over time they become unconscious actions that we do without thinking!

Anything new takes practice! And quite frankly sometimes our brain doesn’t like change! We have thousands and thousands of neurons that fire and wire together, they form our memories and behaviors. You’ve been traveling down the same old road, the same road that you’ve traveled down every day. But, one day you hit a roadblock, what do you do? You can’t go over it and you can’t go around it so you have to find a new route.  And that is what hypnotherapy does it finds you a new map to follow.

This is where I come in as a Clinical and Medical Hypnotherapist I’m always being asked (mainly women) if I can hypnotise them to lose weight, stop eating chocolate, crisps whatever their downfall might be!

I know through my training quite a bit about how the brain works concerning our thoughts, believes, and habits. But knowing that didn’t help me to kick my bad habits, there is a thing called the GI Joe fallacy: The idea that knowing is half the battle.

The type of hypnotherapy I do is well researched and evidence-based, I help people to imagine their preferred future using solution-focused questions and guided imagery. So, I’m combining this research and my Solution Focused Hypnotherapy training to help you to achieve your goals.

I have walked my talk.  At first, I used my approach to get my own snacking under control, I lost 1/2 stone in three weeks, that how much snacking I did!!

I then used my approach to get over my lazy thoughts towards exercising at the weekend. I get up on a weekday and do 30 minutes yoga each morning apart from Friday and the weekends which I consider my days off, but why? That’s the time, I have more time! I know how much yoga benefits me, my flexibility, and mental well-being, but still, my brain went ‘THE COMPUTER SAYS NO!  The next Friday was V.E day, I got up feeling motivated and did yoga. I mention it was V.E day for a reason, I am not going to lie I did have a few drinks that day, but Saturday I still wanted to get up and do yoga!! And I did, and yes, I have been surprised.

Weight is affected by many factors, stress, and sleep issues among them, hypnotherapy lowers the stress hormone cortisol so it helps you to relax and unwind, your sleep patterns improve, which in turn helps with weight management and mental well-being.

 

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The Mountains We Climb

 

acrylic painting of mountains By Cameron Pattison

Painting by Cameron Patterson.

Have you ever seen a mountain in the distance, snow-capped, surrounded by blue sky and fluffy white clouds? Maybe you felt the excitement of an adventure bubbling. And then doubt your ability to reach the summit? This my readers is being human.

Many years ago, I returned to learning and the said to me ‘women were not so good as men at making five-year plans.’ She went on to say men were better at seeing and saying what they wanted and forging on to achieve their goals.

I don’t know if that is true, but she did go on to say that taking the first step, however, small is the start of your journey.  An important lesson for me. I had always wanted to be a hairdresser. This was something my parents didn’t want me to do when I left school. In those days it was not thought of as a creative job but something you did if you weren’t so bright!

Now in my mid 30’s with 2 young children, I enrolled in an adult hairdressing course. I worked one day a week in a salon for 4 years getting my practical training as payment. I was the oldest junior in town! And I loved it! I never minded the mindless tasks of sweeping up, and cleaning mirrors, after all that was second nature to me being a Mum. Life experience had taught me how to deal with clients.  That and my charm and the ability to talk on any level. As time went by I had my clients and managed to find a work-life balance.

Fast forward 20 years and my husband tells me that he won’t ever retire. So at a time when some of my friends are planning their retirement, I find myself embarking on my next career.

While on a yoga holiday I was inspired by my group of yogis. They all had alongside their careers a holistic side hustle. This got me thinking and I remembered a fascination I once had with hypnotherapy. All be it from a stage hypnotist. Never the less it had left a lasting impression. I remembered afterward that I had had the most relaxed feeling.

After returning home, I started to look into courses. Feeling I was somehow being propelled down a path. Because every article I read, every program I watched or listened to, everyone I spoke to, everywhere I went hypnotherapy was mentioned.  Was this my destiny? I now know that was because it was in the forefront of my mind. I enrolled in a Solution Focused Hypnotherapy course and started my next adventure.

Once again I found myself at the bottom of the mountain looking up. I took that first step, stumbling many times on the way to the summit, but I took that first step! Now here I am standing enjoying the view, taking in the mountain ranges in front of me. Steading myself in readiness for what my future brings, knowing that I have the strength, and the inner resilience to take on any challenges.

Maybe you have your mountain to climb and maybe I can help you also to reach your summit.

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New Year New You.

Fed up with making New Year resolution?

Just to feel deflated a week later. So many times, we start off with all good intentions, motivated, goals set, but our will power wanes at the first offer of cake or drinks for someone’s birthday. One won’t hurt? Then the guilt!  You might not be surprised that our brain is hard wired to pleasure seek and if we are feeling down on ourselves our brain will look elsewhere for comfort. Food and drink release the feel-good neurotransmitter’s endorphin, so for a short while we feel happy and content. But not for long, soon the brain starts looking around for something else to make us feel happier and that’s when we can start spiraling out of control with our eating habits.

Hypnotherapy can help break this cycle by helping you take back control.

We focus on what you want and how you can achieve your goals through relaxation and visualization this coupled with an understanding of how the brain works in relation to stress and food consumption will put you back on the road to success. When we take action, we take control, this releases the neurotransmitter Serotonin, and the more Serotonin we make the happier our brain is. Other ways of making this wonderful neurotransmitters is by doing the things we enjoy in life, like meeting up with friends and laughing, taking part in enjoyable activities or hobbies. When we are doing a combination of these things, we start to think more positively about ourselves and our life.