The subconscious mind – our “inner voice” – controls quite a bit about how we feel about ourselves.
Our unconscious thoughts can be ardent supporters, telling us to feel good about the way we look and our abilities. Or the subconscious can be a fierce critic, filling our minds with negative, unhealthy thoughts about ourselves.
The problem is: Overcoming these negative thoughts is a real challenge.
These thoughts are automatic and deeply embedded in our minds. You look in the mirror – and bam! – the subconscious tells you not to like what you see. It happens unconsciously, automatically.
In other words, low self-esteem is often the result of flaws in our subconscious. Our automatic thoughts aren’t rational. They aren’t based in fact – very often becoming embedded in childhood – and they’re overly critical and unhealthy.
But what if these thoughts could be quieted, or better yet, removed altogether. What if we could gain control over our inner voice and re-teach it to be more supportive, positive and helpful?
That’s the basis of confidence hypnosis.
Utilizing hypnotherapy, we can access these unconscious, automatic thoughts, and through the power of suggestion, we can begin to unseat and reframe them.
Simply put, hypnosis can be a very powerful tool for targeting the root cause of low self-esteem. It can help prevent those negative, overly critical thoughts from telling us how to feel about ourselves and empower us to rid ourselves of these negative thinking patterns.
Low Self-Esteem and Self-Confidence: Can Hypnotherapy Help You?
The terms self-esteem and self-confidence tend to be used interchangeably. But they represent two very different ideas.
Self-confidence, for example, can be thought of as that inner judgement we make about our abilities or our qualities. I’m good at public speaking but not singing, for instance. Therefore, I’m a self-confident public speaker.
Self-confidence can change based on situation. That person with plenty of self-confidence prior to a public speech might be a nervous wreck at karaoke night.
Self-esteem, on the other hand, tends to remain constant, and it’s a measure of our feelings of self-worth and self-love. If you have low self-esteem, whether you’re public speaking, or singing karaoke, you feel negatively about yourself.
What Causes Low Self-Confidence?
Both self-esteem and self-confidence are believed to be formed by past experiences. Throughout life, we receive a lot of negative and positive messages – which can have a significant impact how we feel about ourselves.
This feedback can come from our peers, our family, the media. And unfortunately, we’re more responsive and receptive to negative messages – they’re much more likely to get filed away in the subconscious.
Trauma too can have a significant impact on our self-esteem and self-confidence. Traumatic experiences can diminish our feelings of self-worth and our sense of trust.
Ultimately, self-esteem presents itself on a scale. Some have an abundance, while others might struggle in certain situations. But people with low self-esteem tend to feel a constant level of low self-worth. They’re likely to experience and feel:
- Hopelessness or depression
- Boredom or a lack of motivation
- Being overly sensitive to criticism
- Lacking assertiveness
- Hearing negative, overly critical self-talk
- Feeling like their life’s a failure
You Can Improve Your Self-Esteem
There’s hope. You can fix your mind’s negative thinking patterns.
In fact, low self-esteem is a lot like a glitch in your mind. You’ve taught yourself, through repetitive thinking over your lifetime, how to feel about yourself and your abilities in certain situations.
But self-esteem is flexible. At different periods in our lives, it can be high, or low. We can learn to improve it or make adjustments.
In other words, we aren’t doomed to lives of low self-esteem. It’s very possible to build and increase self-esteem. And it’s possible to overcome these automatic thoughts – reduce and eliminate them from our inner monologues.
And that’s the key to improving your self-confidence and self-esteem.
The Polluted Self-Conscious: How Negative Perceptions Form
We can develop negative perceptions about ourselves, sometimes very early in life: A negative social experience, a bully belittling our looks, failing a test.
These experiences tend to have a lasting impact on our self-perception – long into our adult lives.
Why? For starters, our subconscious wants to protect us. After negative experiences, the subconscious develops defense mechanisms – i.e. feeling like you’re bad at having conversations with new acquaintances – to prevent us from feeling the hurt, or shame, or failure that we might have experienced.
This defense manifests as those automatic thoughts.
After that negative social experience, for instance, your mind might have started to tell you: You don’t like social situations. You’re not good at them; you should avoid them altogether.
And the negativity becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
We expect so convincingly to fail at talking to new acquaintances – that lo and behold – we will ourselves into having a bad time, letting our shyness take hold, and pushing ourselves to avoid meeting new people.
If left unchecked, this low self-esteem and confidence persuades us to have these negative experiences over and over again.
That’s why they’re so hard to remove.
Because we’ve allowed the subconscious to dictate how we should feel about ourselves and our abilities over a lifetime, we allow these thoughts to be continually reinforced.
Why Behavioral Therapy and Coaching Only Goes So Far
So how do we overcome those negative thoughts? How do we get past them, and prevent them from controlling our actions and feelings?
A common approach suggested by therapists is repetition.
Behavioral coaches say you need to do the thing you fear over and over again, whether if that’s public speaking, mingling at parties, or looking in the mirror and learning to love what you see.
In other words, we push ourselves to try and fail, and try again, until we consistently find success. But here’s the problem with that approach: Those negative thoughts still exist in our minds!
Sure, we can work to tamp them down, but they still affect how we approach facing our fears and how we feel about the results.
In other words, many find it challenging to work up the courage to overcome their fears in the first place. And even when they discover the nerve to practice over and over again, they’re still expecting failure or a negative outcome.
If you’ve ever earned praise from a friend, only to feel inside that “they’re just being nice” or “they don’t really mean that,” you know exactly how that feels. Sure, you quieted those thoughts enough to perform, but those negative beliefs are still informing and making up a part of our self-perception.
Simply put, proof and fact do very little to sway our unconscious thoughts.
We might experience success. Our conscious thoughts might tell us that we’re improving. But those irrational, unconscious thoughts are still there, telling us how to really feel.
Confidence Hypnosis: How Hypnotherapy Can Help Us Overcome Low Self-Esteem
Repeatedly facing our fears can certainly be a tool for improving self-esteem and self-confidence.
Yet, it’s a challenge. It’s difficult to stay on course, and do something over and over even though the mind is yelling at us that’d we’d rather not.
Here’s one way to look at it: Negative self-talk is like an addiction.
We might feel the pain our addiction is causing, we might see the effect it’s having on our relationships, we might literally see that it’s destroying our emotional health or our performance at work, or in social situations, or for whatever our mind is telling us that we can’t do.
But yet, we can’t stop. We can’t seem to shut those thoughts off.
It’s just like the urge the addict “hears” telling them to use again.
Hypnosis can be so successful for low self-esteem, because its goal is to repair the mind.
Hypnosis helps to re-teach the subconscious to be a supportive partner in our day-to-day lives. We’re taking out those irrational, negative thoughts, and repopulating the subconscious with more helpful information.
You can think of hypnosis as meditation with a goal. For centuries, meditation has been used to help people learn to tame the mind, to find inner peace, and quiet automatic thinking.
Yet, hypnosis takes this one step further – hypnosis adds a goal.
Here’s how: During a hypnotherapy session, you’ll guide your body and mind to a state of heightened relaxation and awareness. (Much like you’d expect from deep meditation.)
In this state, the way our brains behave changes. Our minds become completely relaxed, and we’re able to access our subconscious. In fact, we can bypass the critical mind and go straight to that inner voice and speak directly to it.
What’s more, when we’re in a state of hypnosis, our brains become highly receptive to suggestion.
Therefore, when we hear mantras in this state like, “you will feel confidence in everything you do,” they’re much more likely to stick. We’ve bypassed that critical conscious layer that’s always so quick to qualify and analyze suggestions.
Now, you might be thinking: Is that really all there is to it? And the short answer is: Yes.
Sure, hypnosis for low self-esteem can be highly complex; a hypnotherapist can use numerous techniques for empowering and repairing the subconscious mind.
But whatever the technique, the idea is the same: In a state of hypnosis, we’re able to add newer, more helpful and more supportive information to the subconscious. And at the same time, we can work to release the negative thinking patterns that are causing our self-esteem issues in the first place.
Getting Started with Confidence Hypnosis
You want to try it. You want to see if hypnosis can empower you to overcome your negative self-talk. So what options do you have?
In general, there are three ways you can pursue hypnosis: Self-hypnosis, visiting a hypnotherapist, or following guided hypnotherapy sessions.
Which option should you pursue?
Well, the short answer is that all have their benefits, but they’re all effective if you’ve made it up in your mind to make a change. Here’s a look at each method:
Self-Hypnosis for Confidence: Self-hypnosis is self-guided, and a key advantage is that it can be conducted anywhere you are, at home, at the office, etc. In self-hypnosis, you follow your own hypnosis script, to induce the state of hypnosis, and then to provide yourself with suggestions related to improving confidence.
Guided Hypnotherapy: Want to follow a recorded hypnotherapy script for self-esteem? Downloadable recordings or hypnosis CDs can help you do that. This form is easy to follow, it’s typically professionally produced, and it can be conducted just about anywhere.
One-on-One Sessions: Visiting a certified hypnotherapist offers many benefits. A one-on-one session offers you the chance for a completely personalized experience, and you can ask questions about the process and what to expect. A hypnotherapist will also work with you to determine a plan of action for overcoming your esteem issues.
What happens during your session. A session will begin with thinking and talking about what you hope to achieve. Additionally, you’ll work with a hypnotherapist to learn root causes and triggers for your emotions. Then, following the hypnotherapist’s instructions (or those on a script or recording), you’ll be guided into a highly relaxed, hyper-aware state. Your hypnotherapist will begin to speak directly to your subconscious to challenge your negative beliefs.
What happens after the session. After a session with a hypnotherapist, many experience improvements almost immediately. Yet, typically, individuals continue to work, using recordings and self-hypnosis techniques to reinforce the suggestions, and following up for maintenance sessions.
Ultimately, the type of hypnosis you use to improve your confidence comes down to preference. What works best for your lifestyle? What’s aligned closest to your goals?
Yet, the key is persistence: Overcoming deep-seated negative self-talk requires commitment. In fact, research suggests at least 6 hypnotherapy sessions are required for long-term results, while additional studies have found that regular self-hypnosis offers significant benefits.
Does Hypnosis for Self-Esteem Work? A Review of Research
Is hypnosis for confidence effective? That’s the question that almost everyone wants to know.
The truth is: When you look at the research, the data suggest hypnotherapy can be a powerful tool for overcoming negative self-talk. From improved feelings of self-worth, to reduced levels of depression, many studies have returned promising results. Here’s a look:
A 2008 South African study looked at hypnosis for improving the self-perceptions of college students. Following two tests, the researchers concluded that hypnosis was effective at improving self-esteem.
In 2004, researchers examined the effects that self-hypnosis had on 261 U.S. military veterans who struggled with substance abuse. Ultimately, the veterans were asked to use self-hypnosis 3-5 times per week, as a means for relapse prevention. At a 7-week follow-up, the group that had consistently used self-hypnosis reported the higher levels of self-esteem and serenity.
A 2013 study examined the effect that hypnosis could have on patients post-surgery, in particular in pain management and for improving self-esteem. The results suggested that hypnosis could be a useful tool for improving self-esteem after surgery.
Start Your Hypnosis Journey Today and Breakthrough Negative Thinking
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