Monday, 25 July 2011

Have confidence in your ideas like Tom Pellereau, winner of The Apprentice

Tom Pellereau has won The Apprentice and I am sure anyone who has been following the series was closely watching the final episode trying to second guess where Lord Sugar’s finger would point next and who would come out triumphant.

I, like many people, was sure that Helen Milligan was going to continue on her amazing almost perfect record and win no problem, but Helen didn’t follow her gut instinct; she did what she thought Lord Sugar would want and not what she was passionate about and good at.

Whilst most of us have to answer to someone and have to curb our ideas to fit the role we are trying to fill, it is still important to have the confidence in your own beliefs and ideas. I’m sure Helen Milligan is an amazing employee and any company would be very lucky to have her. She is very hard-working (almost too much as she puts work before her own life), but if Helen had stuck to what she knew best and presented Lord Sugar with a baking concept I am sure she would have been stiff competition for Tom. Unfortunately, at the last hurdle she decided to go with what she thought would make Lord Sugar happy and designed an invisible concept. Even Lord Sugar himself was shocked at her choice of business plan.

Hypnotherapy, CBT & NLP can help you to have the confidence in your abilities and to have the strength to carry on with an idea. It is important to be able to recognise when you are going down the wrong road and be able to listen to other people’s ideas and advice but it is as important to be able to recognise when you have seen something maybe one of you colleagues hasn’t and have the confidence in yourself to explain your approach clearly.

I think it is brilliant that Tom has won The Apprentice and I believe that with the support of Lord Sugar he will continue to be an amazing inventor. It is a good reminder that you don’t need to be an intimidating bully to make it in the business world, you just need the confidence to put your ideas forward and not allow people’s negative opinions to affect you and make you change your core beliefs and values.

Monday, 18 July 2011

Can Stress Affect Fertility?

We spend most our life taking steps to not get pregnant but when the day comes that we want to become parents how much do we really prepare our bodies both mentally and physically?

According to the HFEA (Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority ) an estimated 1 in 7 couples are having some sort of fertility problem – approximately 1,750,000 across the UK.

There are a number of factors that can affect fertility in couple’s attempts to have a successful pregnancy. If all health factors have been successfully been ruled out, stress can be the main contributor to an inability to conceive and have a successful birth.

GP and hypnotherapist Dr Leslie Brann says: "Women are putting their careers first and delaying pregnancy, and fertility does decline as you get older. I get a lot of women who have mental blocks to getting pregnant or who have convinced themselves they cannot conceive. They often tell me under hypnosis that they don't see any eggs in their ovaries or that their tubes are too small for the egg to go through. I then try to get them to overcome this 'block'.

"Mary Coates, a hypnotherapist who treats both women undergoing IVF and childless women who have no medical reason not to conceive, believes women in their thirties are particularly prone to "mental blocks" towards pregnancy."

"They feel the clock is against them, so panic sets in, which affects their fertility. It's a vicious circle. Almost every woman who comes to me is in that bracket. If you think that stress can stop your periods, just think what else it can do.”

There is no medical proof that hypnotherapy can cure infertility, which now affects one couple in six. However, it does lower stress and anxiety, which can affect hormone levels and create a mental block to conception. Tests have shown that hypnotherapy can lower a woman's levels of a hormone called prolactin which suppresses ovulation.

For more information, read the full article at The Independent, “Hypnosis can help you get pregnant” by Sophie Goodchild:

Stress is caused by a situation that a person either consciously or unconsciously perceives as threatening; this creates the fight or flight response. Whilst the body is under stress it releases a number of hormones, including Cortisol, which can affect the delicate hormonal balance needed for ovulation, fertilization, implantation and even the health of the fetus. Stress can not only affect the woman’s fertility but also the man’s sperm count and mobility.

Hypnosis can help you to prepare your body for pregnancy, helping you to remove any mental blocks that you have towards becoming pregnant and stay calm throught the pregnancy, giving your body the best chance to conceive and produce a healthy baby.

© EKTherapies

Monday, 11 July 2011

Hypnotherapy for Sports Performance

Novak Djokovic has won Wimbledon. I am sure anyone who is a tennis fan was glued to the TV last weekend to watch the 24 year-old Serb become the champion of SW19 and replace Rafa Nadal as world number one. But it is not just skill that got him there; he also had to have the ability to focus on the game and blank out the crowd, where he was and what he was playing for.

One of the key attributes of any top athlete is the ability to focus and perform at a top level of skill in every situation. Milton Erickson was a pioneer in the use of hypnotherapy methods in sports to improve focus. He worked with a number of top athletes, including the US Olympic Rifle squad and the shot-putter Donald Lawrence. In one story relating to a tournament golfer (Rossi 1988) Erickson was asked to assist in improving the golfer's consistency across all holes throughout a round. The golfer seemed to always play the first hole perfectly, and then deteriorate. The question for Erickson was: If you can play the first hole perfectly, then can you do as well on the next? He put the golfer in a trance and told him "You will play only the first hole, that is all you will remember, and you will be alone on the golf course". The golfer, needless to say, played an excellent round in his next tournament.

By taking the pressure out of the game the golfer, Rossi, was able to perform to the best of his ability throughout the whole tournament.

Similarly, anyone who has watched Jonny Wilkinson prepare for a kick will have noticed that he uses the same visual and physical ritual every time.

“He places the ball carefully, the same way that he has so many times before. Shutting out the cheers and jeers of the crowd, he stands up, and walks just the right amount of paces backwards. Then takes a single sidestep. But he is not yet ready. Standing with his feet a shoulder width apart, he clasps his hands in front of himself, staring at them for what seems like an age. Finally looking towards the posts, tilting slightly upwards, he pulls his head back just a little, as if the target somehow magnifies in his vision. He focuses, and there he sees her, sitting right in the middle, in the crowd, between the posts. Then he feels it; he knows that he is ready. And the rest is history". (Vile and Biggs - in Press)

For Jonny to reach this level of control he has practiced not only the physical preparation but also the mental too. "The key to cognitive motor learning lies in elucidating the way in which learned skills are represented in memory". (Annett 1995)

Often it is the mental processes that makes the difference between two athletes; the ones that let the pressure or their own doubts creep in will struggle to be as successful as the athletes who stay “in the zone” (focused).

Hypnotherapy, CBT & NLP can teach you the techniques to stay focused and to achieve your goals, either within sports or in life, helping you to realize your potential and to focus on where you want to be.

Monday, 4 July 2011

Hypnosis 'could save NHS millions'

I have to share this very exciting article with you from the Press Association, published on the 6th June 2011.

Hypnosis treatments could be used on a range of medical conditions to save the NHS millions of pounds, according to a group of medical experts.

The Hypnosis and Psychosomatic Medicine Section of the Royal Society of Medicine (RSM) believe the therapies help relieve pain and stress.

But it warned patients need to be protected from rogue practitioners, who cause harm and end up costing the NHS more.

Jacky Owens, the president of the RSM's Hypnosis Section, said: "Conditions such as depression, pain and irritable bowel syndrome affect millions of people in the UK and a great cost to the NHS. But hypnosis can often work where other treatments have been unsuccessful."

Ms Owens, a qualified nurse who uses hypnosis in her work with cancer patients added: "If doctors were able to refer patients to properly trained hypnotherapists, it would save a cash-strapped NHS a great deal of money."

She said making hypnosis a standard part of the "NHS toolbox" would lead to the public becoming better informed about the procedure and mean that vulnerable patients would be less likely to turn to "hypno-cowboys".

The group fear non-medically trained hypnotists frequently lack the understanding of the diseases their patients have, so can cause real harm. It said many of the quack operators use damaging techniques to treat people with psychological conditions, like inducing "false memories" as they believe current problems stem from past traumas so terrible that the memory of them has been suppressed.

Dr Peter Naish, the president-elect of the section, said: "There's very little evidence, either from laboratory research or real life, that we can suppress traumatic memories - people suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder would love to be able to do so."

Ms Owens added: "That's a small step but we're confident that with more research, hypnosis will be recognised as an extremely useful tool to be used alongside mainstream medicine. What we need are doctors, dentists, nurses, psychologists, physiotherapists, radiotherapists - the whole gamut of people who treat patients - trained in using hypnosis as another tool in their treatment programme."

She called on the Government to review the issue.

It is so exciting to see that hypnosis is getting more and more recognised for the amazing therapy that it is. Currently hypnosis is ungoverned, as a qualified therapist who worked hard for my diploma, I am hoping that the government will make this profession a governed one like acupuncture is. For now we can only choose to belong to the best governing bodies. I belong the GHR (General Hypnotherapy Register) which is one of the bodies who would qualify under the government legislation when they come into practice.