Mind & Body Clinic, Loughborough, Leicestershire, UK

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Quit Smoking (AKA Smoking Cessation)

I am frequently asked about using hypnotherapy to help people to stop smoking. I have written this page in order to answer the most common, and some of the more surprising, questions that have arisen on the telephone over the last 10 years.

Statistics for the Curious

You may be interested to know that hypnotherapy ranks very highly as one of the most successful approaches to becoming a non-smoker. Patches and gum do rather poorly, despite the marketing hype. Acupuncture is claimed to help but many have doubts about it.

According to a survey taken about 5 years (1999-2000) ago from clients who had consulted me to help them stop smoking, a rate of about 80% to 85% succeeded over a sample of approximately 50 clients. That is, they were still non-smokers 6 months after therapy. It is the clients who were successful! I just help. The remaining 15%-20% had lapsed but had not reconsulted.

Responsibility

The truth is that no matter what you may have been told about hypnosis, you can not be made to do something you don’t really want to do. Some people ask me if I can to make them stop: my answer is always the same; no. When people ask me if I can help them stop, the answer is always the same; yes. People often believe themselves to be weak and unresourceful in this matter but they often surprise themselves when they find that becoming a non-smoker by using hypnosis is actually quite easy. Click here to read a typical testimonial. All it takes is two things;

  1. The smoker takes responsibility for their own behaviour and its consequences.
  2. The smoker really wants to be a non-smoker - not just thinks they ought to give up.

It’s that simple. I do the rest, with your co-operation of course!

Not All Smokers Are The Same

I use a combination of hypnotherapy, EFT and cognitive therapy to help my clients achieve their goal of becoming a non-smoker. There are, however, a number of smokers who have become far more dependent on nicotine and for these clients the one-stop session is simply unrealistic. I may have to use advanced analytic methods to help these clients dissolve the link between their dependence and some hitherto unknown issue.

The best thing that you can do for your health (and possibly your finances) is to quit smoking NOW, whether it's no smoking day or any other day. To stop smoking would also mean an improvement in your circulation, slow the ageing process and reduce stress levels. You probably know all this, but that hasn’t help you much so far?

But Smoking Relaxes Me?!?!

Many smokers believe that smoking relaxes them, however cigarettes work in the same way as any other drug. Not having it causes anxiety or cravings, so when the drug is taken (i.e. nicotine), that feeling is relieved. ...

People are fooled because the nicotine has created the anxiety in the first place. It comes as a real surprise the learn that the actual physical withdrawal from nicotine can be handled relatively easily. But if this were the whole story then everybody would be using patches successfully. The biggest problems are psychological.

For example associations may have been created and re-enforced by having a cigarette:

  • after a meal (habit + alteration of digestive process)
  • with alcohol (habit)
  • with tea and coffee (habit)
  • first thing in the morning etc. (habit + low nicotine blood levels)
  • With a friend who also smokes (habit + bonding)

There may also be associations with feelings such as when you are:

  • bored
  • stressed
  • lonely
  • upset
  • angry

People can associate being a smoker with:

  • glamour (not so common now)
  • sociability (not so common now)
  • rebellion (much more common than you might think)
  • having a reliable friend

There can be underlying issues driving the habit such as:

  • I want/deserve to die
  • Smoking is my friend
  • I can’t live without a cigarette
  • I don’t have any other pleasures in life.
  • I'm immune/It won't ge me.

and many many more...

As a qualified hypno-psychotherapist these are just some of the issues which I help to resolve using a combination of clinical hypnotherapy, EFT and CBT. These techniques will enable you to reduce or eliminate cravings and withdrawal pangs.

Costs & "Guarantees"

Please read carefully.

You will see some therapists offering guarantees. No honest therapist can guarantee that you will become a non-smoker, but I can promise to use my knowledge and expertise to help you achieve your goal. Part of becoming a non-smoker is to begin to really take responsibility for your own health - all I do is make it ridiculously easy to be a non-smoker and ultimately - you still have free choice and free will as you would with any hypnosis.

Those who guarantee results know full well that a significant percentage of their clients will not succeed, because the approach they take with them is not “client tailored”. This "drop off rate" is factored into their elevated costs - you are therefore paying for their "failure rate".

My client's success rate is approximately 80% (measured by 6 monthly follow ups in 1998).

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