Written by Nancy Pfaff, CCHT, MNLP |
Breathless, Ella burst into her hypnotherapist’s office confessing she was “mean and nasty” to her husband over the weekend. She felt irritable and restless, experienced hot flashes which she hated, and thought she was in menopause. Something had to change. All the stress associated with hormonal upheavals showed itself in her body.
Her hypnotherapist, specializing in the passage to power–the menopausal journey–suggested a path for her return to harmony in body, mind and soul. Ella discovered some of the wonderful, new things she could do to reframe her situation and nourish her inner being.
Menopause can be a dynamic time of reinventing oneself, of setting new priorities. It’s a time of shifting priorities from giving one’s life for others to diving deep within oneself to release that authentic inner self. It doesn’t mean leaving the nurturing task to others, but balancing it with self-discovery and “blossoming.” This physical change as a rite of passage to wisdom and power is more accepted and understood now than ever before.
How can hypnosis help Ella, and what can she do physically to help herself?
The hypnotherapist, working with the subconscious mind, can talk to the organs and cells of the body because the body is directly related to the subconscious mind. Negativity, which threatens the immune system and starves the cells, can be reversed through direct suggestion and the use of metaphor. Shifting negative to positive through guided imagery in the hypnosis process triggers a sense of safety in the body bringing balance and wholeness to the physical, mental and spiritual system. Hypnosis will help her Inner Healer (the parasympathetic nervous system) bring balance to her body, up regulate her immune system, boost her self-esteem and decrease her stress.
Hypnosis can also help in reframing the symptoms of menopause by looking at them from a different perspective. Using direct suggestion and metaphor techniques, an uncomfortable hot flash due to hormone imbalance can be transformed into an energy surge, burning away the hurts and disappointments of the past. Distress can be transformed into gratitude for a spiritual growth burst.
A hypnotherapist can work with the subconscious mind by teaching deep relaxation, and by implanting agreed-upon suggestions while she is in a hypnotic state. First the hypnotherapist will work with the client to identify several resource states—past experiences where she felt empowered, confident, healthy and loved. Then the resource states can be made into suggestions, which will fortify her self-esteem and empower her to move forward with her dreams.
To help herself physically, the client needs to know what her body is doing to affect her mind and emotions. She needs to know her levels of estrogen and progesterone and how they are cycling. One of the best ways to identify these hormone levels is with a saliva test, because the saliva gland identifies how much of each hormone is actually being delivered for use in the body.
Once the hormone levels are identified, natural products and bio-identical hormones if needed can help to bring back a natural hormone balance. If symptoms are significant, you may need a well-informed medical specialist who works with bioidentical hormones that do not have the side effects of the pharmaceuticals identified by the Women’s Health Initiative.
Menopause is seen today as an opportunity to let go of limiting belief patterns, of developing wisdom and power by living out of authenticity, and to bring to fruition longings and desires. Images of menopause indicating old age, being used up, being sexless and helpless are images relegated to the past. Balance your hormones, eat well, exercise, develop your spirituality with hypnosis, and celebrate your coming of age, into your wisdom and power!
1. Consultation with Dr. Joseph Johnson regarding saliva tests and bioidentical hormones. Sierra Nevada Wellness Center, 2009
2. Borysenko, Joan Ph.D. ¬Menopause: Initiation into Power. Sounds True, Boulder 2004.
3. “Menopause — Women’s Night Out”, seminar in Reno, Feb. 28, 2009.
4. Brizendine, Louann MD. The Female Brain. Broadway Books Random House, Inc. New York 2006.
5. Alman, Brian M. MD. Self-Hypnosis: The Complete Manual for Health and Self-Change. 2nd Edition. Brunner-Routledge. New York 1992.
6. Brunson, Tim. “Integration: Innovations in Mind/Body Therapies.” The International Hypnosis Research Institute.
For more info, contact Nancy Pfaff, CCHt, NLP at (775) 560-3030, specializing in clinical hypnotherapy and Neuro-linguistic psychology.