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Would You Try Hypnotherapy?

Several months ago, I was sitting in the auditorium of a cruise ship, watching and listening to a performer—a hypnotist—give instructions to some fellow passengers on stage. And even though I was only in the audience and not a participant, I was apparently in a trance myself, according to my boyfriend after the show. I agreed with my bf, noting how weird I had felt during the show. Tired...relaxed...and above all, unamused. While the audience had roared with laughter at what they were watching on stage, I had felt totally indifferent and spacey. So I began to wonder: Could be “sensitive” to hypnosis?

In the latest issue of FITNESS—the February issue, on stands now!--one of our writers explains how hypnosis can help athletes, women going into labor or surgery, and people with fears or phobias. She gives a few tips on self-hypnosis, and even shares her own weight-loss attempt. I was so psyched to see the article that I thought I’d jump in and share my experience about hypnotherapy. After that cruise ship experience and then doing some research online, I gave in to my curiosity and went to a few hypnotherapy sessions in the fall...

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Click "Read More" to find out what I learned:

*If you go to hypnotherapy, you will likely spend 20-30 minutes talking about yourself or your life.  At first, I thought I wanted to get right down to business (“I don’t need a shrink!”). However, talking about myself made the other 20-30 minutes of actual hypnosis even more effective because my hypnotherapist knew me better. So don’t be afraid to open up a little! When I told Ane—a fantastic, young hypnotherapist in NYC’s West Village—that I was both a creative type and a perfectionist, she instantly knew “my world” better...and was all that more helpful during the visualization part of my sessions.

*The FITNESS article talks about how strong your mind-body connection is, and this was also hands-down my biggest takeaway from hypnotherapy. Visualizations are cool, but they work the best when you focus on exactly how your body feels during the visualizations. Making the correlation between what’s going on in your head and how your physical reaction can be really powerful. For example, if you’re visualizing yourself walking past the cookie aisle, also take note of how your body feels...your chest probably doesn’t feel as tight because you don’t have those guilt pangs. Hmmm, pretty interesting, right?

*Hypnosis/hypnotherapy isn’t magic and it’s not “mind control.” It’s simply another method for teaching you how to approach something in your life, according to what works for you. Want to be able to suddenly wake up at 5:30 a.m. every day, even though you’ve never been a morning person? It’s not happening, sister; Hypnosis and visualizations aren’t going to miraculously change you. But they can help you to perhaps associate how calm you feel when you’ve got a quiet house all to yourself at 7 a.m. By tapping into that mind-body connection, you can employ yet another great strategy for seeing change in your life.

So. Be honest with me, ladies: What do you think about hypnosis and would you try it?