Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Solution-focused Brief Therapy

Another nippy morning, still Fallish, though.

There are several counselors who occasionally read these pages (huge welcome) and I have begun to wonder, how many of you utilize hypnosis is your practice? Or perhaps, how many of you utilize elements of the hypnotic process into your practice but do not call it hypnosis? This is not written in a confrontation voice, just so you know. There are several wonderful tools within hypnosis that seem like they would be good in a counseling setting.

On the counseling front, I find it interesting how many people who come to me for hypnosis also really want counseling. I have even been asked if I would do sessions without hypnosis. All I can do is laugh and tell them I can recommend counselors, as that is not my forte. It is then that they will ask questions of hypnosis. Can you use it to help control anger? Can you use it to help with various issues of infidelity? Can you use it to help with marital relationships? And ultimately, depending on the circumstance, the answer is yes.

But there are those, who just really need counseling to even get to a point where hypnosis could truly help. I have had one such inquiry from a gentleman in California. So, I looked up marriage counselors in the San Ramon area or Marriage Counseling East Bay. And this is when I realized my criteria for recommending potential counselors and therapist (other than credentials, licenses and certifications) is that they have to sound positive, be a positive example, have empathy, and the more personal experience is good (realize these are just my standards). Such an example would be East Bay Couples Counseling in California. Jay Slupesky, the therapist, has an interesting background in that he was in electrical engineering. After having his own bouts of marital issues, he sought help. Not only did this help him, but he decided to dedicate his practice to helping others with similar problems. Now, I do not know him and I am basing this off of his web site, but it is enough to know that I would give him a try. (There is interesting psychology here into why one would chose one type of marketing over another).

The other thing that it really important, I think, is what sort of counseling one offers. One that seems conducive to hypnosis is solution-focused brief therapy. This is what Jay practices. It is therapy that is based on creating change (change is ever present, a constant) in the present and future, and does not focus solely on the past. Involving visualizing a potential future, the therapist helps the client plan and make steps to attain this. Seems a perfect match for hypnotic processes.

Many of of us in the hypnotic arts chose hypnosis as opposed to being a therapist for many reasons. It is not a long-termed-based solution, but more immediate. We do not have to spend years in schooling. We do not have to know about therapy in general. But the more I delve into it, the more important psychology seems. I know many hypnotists who are constantly reading about hypnotic techniques, yet I often find the more background I have in various psychology schools of thought, the more helpful I am towards my clients.

Any thoughts?

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