Thursday, 9 February 2017

What Happened to Your New Year's Resolutions?

If you are like many of us, you kicked off the New Year with some earnest plans to improve yourself. Whether it is quitting smoking, losing weight, being more physically active, creating more quality time, changing your career, or any of the thousands of things that people seek to improve in their lives, those resolutions seem like such a “must do” when we make them. And yet, so few of us are able to actually make them happen and then make them stick. Instead, we feel stuck where we are.

Why is that?

It is not about being weak or failing.  The answer is in the way that our brains are built and work. The conscious mind, where the will to make those promises of self improvement and the willpower to actually make good on them dwells, represents only about 10-12 percent of our mental capacity. The vast majority of the mind is under the control of the unconscious mind. The unconscious is the place where dreams and imagination come from, so it is the place where we may be inspired by visions of self-improvement.

However, the unconscious mind is also the place where we retain forgotten memories and the long-term storage place of all the positive and negative things we have experienced. Those positive and negative experiences get attached to or associated with the powerful feelings that we were experiencing at the time of the event. That is why without even consciously thinking about it, a long forgotten happy memory that came from a time when you were enjoying a smoke or eating a doughnut comes up and tells us that good feelings come from those activities.

The painful circumstances that drove us to have a drink or binge on something we know is not good for us also rest within, ready to subtly color our judgement into thinking those activities will help us feel better, feel good about ourselves or recover from our troubles.

Trying to change a habit is a combination of physical and emotional behavior change that is like trying to pull 88% of your mind (the unconscious) along with you by using only 12% willpower (from the conscious mind). The unconscious is not logical. It does not care about the benefits of the change you want to make. It only wants to protect you from harm and risk by avoiding things to which it has attached negative associations and make you feel good by engaging in positively associated behaviors. It takes at least 21 days to change a habit and for most of us, the odds are against us being able to win that tug of war between the conscious and unconscious minds.

To set yourself up for success, consider getting a better understanding of what lies within your own mind. Handwriting analysis and regression hypnosis can provide insight into your unconscious mind. Hypnotherapy can help use the resources of the unconscious mind to help rather than hinder your desired behavior changes. Self-hypnosis techniques can provide tools for you to take greater control over your whole mind and use it to achieve the results that you want.

Don’t give up on those resolutions. You made them for a reason. You just didn’t know that the odds were stacked against you. Contact me today to find out how we can get you unstuck and instead, get started to help you achieve your goals and realize your potential!


Dispenza, J. (2012). Breaking the habit of being yourself: How to lose your mind and create a new one. Carlsbad, CA: Hay House.

Hammond, D. C. (Ed.) (1990). Handbook of hypnotic suggestions and metaphors. New York, NY: W.W. Norton and Company.

Kappas, J.G. (2009). Professional hypnotism manual: Introducing physical and emotional suggestibility and sexuality (5th Ed.). Tarzana, CA: Panorama Publishing Company.

Friday, 28 October 2016

Consciousness and Transformation

Consciousness is both who we are and who we perceive ourselves to be. At any given time, who we truly are does not change, however we are constantly re-writing the stories that we tell ourselves. Those stories are based on our perception of the world and our place in it. Consciousness only exists in the moment; our recollections of the past and our fantasies of the future are just more stories. We cannot know what will be in future moments and we cannot trust what we tell ourselves happened in the past, because although real events may have happened, our memories of them are not necessarily accurate. Memories are not the real events, they are based entirely on the “false selves” that are the stories we invent and build upon our perceptions and associations. How many times have you filled in gaps in your memory with good or bad recollections that cannot be recalled by others who experienced the same event?

Transformation means changing our perceptions or our view so that we recognize that what we tell ourselves about the world and about ourselves is not the reality of the world around us or who we truly are. The real being that is buried within us must shed our “false selves” in order to be truly experienced in the moment, being whole or “integrated”. The rare moments when that happens are moments of “peak experience” and potentially transformative as they allow us to recognize the difference between reality and the storytelling that forms most of our world view. Those moments of true experience, unfiltered by our internal stories are when we can be truly dazzled, amazed and awakened by the truth. Finding new ways that allow us to experience the truth is what transformation is all about.

Hypnotherapy can help you get past your internal stories, identify the positive and negative internal associations that may be holding you back, strengthen what’s within you that can help you make progress and start you on a path of true transformation by helping you make changes in your life. This is what I mean by Helping you realize your potential!

Monday, 19 September 2016

Huh? Individuation?

Individuation is a process of intensely personal self-discovery.  It may be initiated at any time, typically at a mature stage of life when one has the opportunity and experience behind them to evaluate and question one’s transpersonal place in the universe.  It is a process that may have many levels of depth as self-deceiving layers are identified and peeled back to gain insights into who someone truly is and who he or she feels they are meant to be.  As a process of examining one’s place in the world and one’s interactions with oneself and others, it is not something that can be directed or provided as a formula.  Each person must follow his or her own path and come to his or her own conclusions.  It is an iterative process, with each level of discovery potentially launching a new round of inquiry and building up a sense of self understanding that increases self-actualization.  It is a process that once started, does not end as understanding only continues to deepen as further self discoveries are made.

More than introspection, it starts with an effort to understand oneself and proceeds to explore soul purpose or place in the world.  It is an umbrella term to describe the effort to answer the questions “Who am I?” and “Why am I here?”  By its nature, individuation is a personal quest that not only will be a different process for each individual, but also will yield completely unique results.  It is not a taxonomy of traits or a personality analysis, but rather an exploration and celebration of the individual that each of us is.

Self-actualization may be a measure of how comprehensive a person has individuated, but even that is a stretch as I do not think that there is a comparative scale.  The idea of comparing degrees of individuation would challenge the individuality of the process.  Even without a conscious effort to seek it, I believe that everyone individuates to the degree that they are driven to do so.  For some, this may be very little and they may enjoy a contented perspective of themselves and their role with little or no need to drill down into the matter.  For others, they may be restless to discover answers to questions about themselves that are not immediately obvious or necessarily answerable.

Hypnotherapy, particularly Integrated Imagery Regression Hypnosis can help start or deepen a journey on the path of individuation.  You remain in control at all times as the hypnotherapist facilitates your access to your own subconscious.  Meanwhile, Handwriting analysis is a way of checking in with your subconscious.  Not what you write, but how you form the letters and place them on the page are direct ideomotor indicators of subconscious traits, feelings and concerns that can help situate you on the individuation road.


Kappas, J.G. (2009). Professional hypnotism manual: Introducing physical and emotional suggestibility and sexuality (5th Ed.). Tarzana, CA: Panorama Publishing Company.

The Centre of Applied Jungian Studies. (n.d.).  The conscious living programme: Individuation. Johannesburg, South Africa: Author. 

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

The Creative Process

Creativity has been described as a process of preparation (getting ready), concentration (diving in), incubation (working out the details), illumination (making it all come together) and verification (making sure it is good). I can see that process, especially when one recognizes that steps within the model, or the entire process, may be repeated.

In my experience, it is essential to be driven by some fundamental curiosity. This may be a question to be answered or a what-if scenario of considering alternative potential problem solutions, plot twists or turns of phrase or paint color. To address this curiosity a positive intention must be developed by focusing the will to create. This intention allows the transition from preparation into concentration. Throughout the process, the cultivation of mindfulness helps the creator reach and remain in the flow of the creative zone.

I believe that every creator must establish a commitment to their work, which is perhaps part of incubation and illumination. My successful works came from the application of intent and commitment so I believe these to be necessary although not sufficient for creativity to flower. Finally, I think every creator must take risks; if not before, then as part of the verification stage. Self-critique, review by the gatekeepers of your field of endeavor, or exhibition of your work leads to changes made to your own approach to the process and style of future works if not revisions to the current work.


Paine-Clemes, B. (2015). Creative synergy: Using art, science and philosophy to self-actualize your life. Virginia Beach, VA: 4th Dimension Press.

Thursday, 2 June 2016

Childhood Memories

Sometimes, childhood memories are not particularly positive, rather being part of the roots of our old personal myths if not real traumas we may have suffered.  Traumas have a habit of resurfacing, like how you always seem to physically hurt yourself in the same place over and over again. In the worst cases physical and emotional traumas can lead to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).  (See my blog from March 2016 about PTSD.)  However, if not traumatic, our old negative personal myths can sometimes serve a purpose. For example, a past failure that led to a personal myth about needing to prove yourself could contribute to feelings of self confidence and independence and over time, lead to a strengthening of these positive aspects despite the original negative experience.  Sometimes, we need a little help to locate where feelings come from within us.  Meditative reflection, Healing Relaxation and hypnotherapy programs can help us continue on the quest for balance -- recognizing that we may have many experiences tucked in our subconscious that are not all good or all bad.

This realization can seem obvious when you look back on past memories, but most of us subconsciously color our memories into positive and negative associations that, according to the Theory of Mind, we then carry with us, possibly without even recalling the root cause. Trying to focus on strengthening one side or ending up wallowing in the other can be a challenge in trying to move forward in personal growth.  As a facilitator of your own exploration of your subconscious, a hypnotherapist can help you better understand some of the sources of wisdom and insight that are within you and help you gain perspective on your own memories.

Contact me to start making powerful changes in your life.


Davenport, L. (2009). Healing and transformation through self-guided imagery. Berkeley, CA: Celestial Arts.

Feinstein, D., & Krippner, S. (2008). Personal mythology: Discovering the guiding stories of your past -- creating a vision for your future (3rd Ed.). Santa Rosa, CA: Energy Psychology Press/Elite Books.

Jung, C.G. (1968). The archetypes and the collective unconscious (R.F.C. Hull, Trans.)(2nd Ed.). Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Kappas, J.G. (2009). Professional hypnotism manual: Introducing physical and emotional suggestibility and sexuality (5th Ed.). Tarzana, CA: Panorama Publishing Company.

Monday, 9 May 2016

Hypnosis for Integration of Positive Changes

Some of my integrated imagery clients have experienced both present life memories that they had consciously forgotten as well as scenes that included both present life memories and odd elements that were not part of present life. In one case a memory of skating with a brother that was not a present life brother morphed into a present life memory of skating in his childhood backyard with his present life brother. For another client, a familiar place (a trail in the woods) had a large rock that is not part of the real trail today and that my client wanted to climb feeling great accomplishment to do so.

Both of these cases illustrate the significance of using hypnosis to let clients go "where the subconscious leads". In each case, the clients were fascinated by the familiar setting having some alternative twist associated with it. In debriefing after the sessions, both of these seemingly mundane incidents interested the clients greatly because of the potential for there to be some meaning or message from the subconscious involved. I suggested that they reflect upon the potential meaning or relevance of what they saw and experienced.

These cases also afforded me the opportunity to offer post hypnotic suggestions for re-scripting scenarios related to the subjects' concerns. One was to imagine a mental thermostat to help control feeling cold and anxiety about the cold; the other was an imaginary coin that could help decrease annoyance and negativity to allow greater enjoyment and excitement in life. In both cases, my guiding of the re-framing/re-scripting scenarios allowed the clients to practice using the techniques within the trance state, enhancing their own willingness to use the techniques out of trance, in their everyday lives.

One of these clients warned me that he had been a subject for hypnosis before and that it had never worked. I believe that with a good rapport between hypnotherapist and client, that resistance can be managed down and the client can enter the hypnotic trance state while remaining in control and comfortable at all times. Many of my clients have complimented my tone, the way that I guide and the effectiveness of what we have accomplished, but it is really the client who does the work of resetting their own neural pathways and changing their old habits. It may take several hypnotherapy sessions to successfully strengthen a suggestion to make it truly useful, and a combination of the techniques of integrated imagery regression hypnosis, with transpersonal and more general hypnotherapy can be customized to meet each client’s particular needs at the time of the session. This is the value that I imagined being able to bring via both integrated imagery/regression and using it as part of a broader hypnosis practice. It is very rewarding to be able to provide some useful help to people rather than just exploring forgotten memories "for fun".

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

The Power of Personal Experience

I recently attended a wellness fair sponsored by the local community health center. Many people approached my display about hypnotherapy, integrated imagery and advanced handwriting analysis and asked questions. Many asked about my credentials and experience. It occurred to me that aside from my training and practical experience, the fact that I too have undergone general hypnosis and regression hypnosis sessions is an advantage in working with clients.

I completed a graduate certificate in Integrated Imagery Regression Hypnosis at Atlantic University in Virginia. The three levels of integrated imagery classes, residencies and volunteer sessions provided me tremendous personal experience with hypnotic induction, deepening and using various techniques in addition to the specific regression techniques being taught. In general, those residential practicums helped build my confidence in hypnotherapy as well as in regression work. The hours spent in residency and practice sessions also provided many of the required clinical hours to complete my external certification as a hypnotherapist by the Hypnotherapists’ Union.

The third level regression course, which focused on spiritual regression in particular, inspired me to seek additional training and qualification in more general therapeutic work. I can personally attest that accessing the superconscious and higher wisdom to resolve issues and help clarify perspective can be dramatic. Additional training and resources such as the Simpson Protocol for superconscious access, the Heartmath Institute’s work on Coherence, and the Transpersonal Hypnosis Institute’s training program have all been very motivating and personally as well as professionally relevant.

My personal experiences as a client undergoing regression hypnosis at many of my training courses raised my self-awareness and have allowed me to better empathize with the experiences of my clients. Resolving issues from my own past was powerful and effective in raising my confidence in the efficacy of this work. Reaching my own higher state and learning on both the physical and nonphysical levels has been a wonderful growth experience.

Finally, being able to study and practice both in person and online has been great. The mentors, instructors, teaching assistants, and classmates that I have learned alongside, guided and been guided by have made my professional growth a shared experience. Contact me to see how we can work together and draw on both of our experiences to help you learn, grow and reach your own potential!


McCraty, R. & Childre, D. (2002). The appreciative heart: The psychophysiology of positive emotions and optimal functioning. Boulder Creek, CA: Institute of HeartMath.

Salisbury, A.F. & Hasegawa, Y. (1995-2005). Transpersonal Hypnotherapy Protocols Workbook. Golden, CO: Transpersonal Hypnotherapy Institute.

Simpson, I. & Robinson, T. (2011-2013). The Simpson Protocol instruction manual: Working interactively in the Esdaile State and beyond. Hempstead, NY: Inner Healing Press.