How to treat insomnia with hypnosis
If you have been suffering from insomnia for months or even a lifetime, you will be acutely aware that the subject of sleep seems to be on everyone’s lips at the moment. Sleep scientists warn of cognitive decline after just a few nights of poor sleep and Ariana Huffington, founder of the Huffington Post has heralded a ‘sleep revolution; urging women to ‘sleep their way to the top’.
The thing is, you really don’t need yet another sleep expert to tell you how to sleep. Insomniacs tend to have already researched the topic to death. They know what they should be doing (usually) and what they shouldn’t. The problem lies in how exactly to interrupt the vicious cycle of frustration and anxiety that often comes with sleeplessness.
Sarah Plater, ex-insomniac and author of the book – ‘Go To Sleep: Peaceful Thoughts For Active Minds’ argues that insomniacs have lost trust in their ability to sleep, leading to a type of performance anxiety. In the same way someone can develop a phobia, it is also common for sleep issues to stem from past stresses or trauma from the past.
Often my hypnotherapy clients will report that they remember a stressful time or phase in their lives, when they struggled to sleep. This memory can then be triggered again by similar stressful events or feelings in the present.
‘Hypnotherapy’s helping to beat my insomnia…..’
If you happened to read the front page of the Daily Mail last month you would definitely have then flipped quickly to page 45 and read an article by columnist Bel Mooney about how hypnotherapy helped her beat chronic insomnia. She describes the years of struggle and trying every cure in the book to no avail.
Being the Daily Mail (see link below) the article is pretty light in terms of details and science, but I think Bel Mooney gives us the most important tip of all:
To start sleeping better you have to stop worrying so much about not going to sleep.
Yes, I know this is sometimes easier said than done, but it’s the truth. Numerous tests with insomniacs and regular sleepers suggest that it is the fear of not sleeping that is more damaging to body and mind than the sleeplessness itself.
How hypnosis and relaxation can help you accept and then overcome insomnia
Hypnotherapy has always been associated with sleep and drowsiness and although this is not strictly the case, it makes a lot of sense to harness its relaxing and focus-enhancing benefits. Long term insomniacs like Sara Plater have reversed years of sleeplessness and frustration through the power of visualisation and learning how to relax deeply at bedtime.
Hypnosis can be incredibly useful in helping someone re-associate sleep with happy or relaxing memories for example. Visualisation training through hypnotherapy can re-train the brain to expect better sleep and even let go of past negative emotions that are keeping someone ‘stuck’.
As a coach and hypnotherapist I help insomniacs regain their trust in their own ability to sleep well at night. They learn to be ‘ok’ with the occasional poor night of sleep. What usually happens is that the whole experience of going to bed becomes less of a performance issue.
I remember one client telling me that simply by remembering 3 good things that happened that day, her sleep had dramatically improved. It’s a case of focusing the mind in the right way.
Whether someone has suffered from insomnia for a few months or even a decade, hypnotherapy is a viable form of treatment that everyone should at least consider. The best thing about it is that, along with improved sleep, clients also find that they feel less stressed, lighter, happier and more clear-headed in general.
If you are struggling to sleep peacefully at night please get in touch and we can have a chat about whether hypnosis for insomnia might work for you too..
How much longer do you really want to go through the day feeling less than your best?
Link to Daily Mail story: