HEALTH: Try hypnotherapy for self-healing |

HEALTH: Try hypnotherapy for self-healing

Ilene Haykus MA, CCHT
pregnant woman at therapy
Getty Images/iStockphoto | iStockphoto


“Self-Healing Through Hypnotherapy” is planned for 10 a.m.-noon Friday, Nov. 15, at 853 White Ave. RSVP to Dulce Bell-Bulley at 970-464-1312.

“Hypnosis… that’s about some guy on stage making his subjects squawk like a chicken, right?”

If you’re like many people, you’re familiar with stories of stage hypnotists choosing highly “suggestible” subjects to entertain other members of the audience. But while certain individuals might be willing, at a subconscious level, to demonstrate such unusual behavior in front of others, the truth is that hypnosis cannot “make” another person do anything he or she is unwilling to do. The true skill of the stage hypnotist lies in his ability to choose subjects willing to perform.

By contrast, hypnotherapists help others to access a state of profound mental and physical relaxation in which the healing ability of the subconscious mind may be accessed. All of us enter the trance-like state of hypnosis every day, when falling asleep, watching television, daydreaming or even driving our cars. However, with intention and the proper skill set, this relaxed state can be used to heal memories associated with emotional trauma, to access inner resources for self-nurturing and guidance, and to engage the autonomic nervous system to support the healing of physical pain, injury or disease.

The modern use of hypnosis for healing dates back to the 18th century when Dr. Franz Anton Mesmer used the principle of “suggestibility” to cure a range of physical and mental disorders in his patients, but it may have existed even earlier in various forms of Hindu yoga meditation and other ancient spiritual practices.

Through the years, prominent figures such as Sigmund Freud, Carl Jung and Milton Erickson have used various forms of hypnotism in their work and the American Medical Association officially recognized hypnosis as a valuable treatment modality in 1958. Since then, it has been used to replace chemical anesthesia, to minimize bleeding during surgery, to reduce pain and to address the underlying causes of cancer, heart disease and other stress-related maladies, accelerating healing.

Hypnotherapists understand the relationship between the mind and the body and address patterns of feeling and belief that may be contributing to psychological, as well as physical, pain or disease. Hypnotherapy is also used to release unhealthy patterns of behavior (such as smoking or overeating) and for stress management. The power of hypnotherapy lies in the ability of the individual to discover his or her own solutions, from within.

In addition, hypnotherapy has been found useful in spiritual practice. Easily learned techniques can help quiet the analytical mind, facilitating deep states of meditation. This powerful healing art benefits the whole person — body, mind, heart and soul — providing self-healing in ways which are both effective and self-empowering.

Ilene Haykus MA, CCHT, received her Master’s Degree in Psychology from Antioch University in 1982. She is a certified clinical hypnotherapist, specializing in the practice of hypnotherapy for more than two decades. She is co-director of Turning Point Hypnotherapy Academy in Pagosa Springs. For information, email ilene@turningpointhypnotherapy

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