So you've been trying to get pregnant for what seems like an eternity. You've synchronised watches to see when the most fertile time is and you quickly get down to business hoping and praying that this is the time conception happens.
But it doesn't. Again.
What could you possibly be doing wrong? You’re both tested as being healthy and you’ve read every magazine, read every blog, article, prayed to Gods you didn’t know existed, spread exotic herbs around the room and made sacrifices to the fertility Gods, but still nothing.
There must be something wrong with you both, right? Every other couple seems to get pregnant at a change in direction of the wind, but not you.
Your friends get pregnant and they say “Oh, it was an accident, it wasn’t planned”. That really is the last thing you want to hear!
Let me tell you what your friends are doing. They are ENJOYING sex! They have sex because they want to feel the love of their partner and be so wrapped up in that moment of passion and intimacy and have those wonderful happy chemicals charging through their bodies that nothing else exists. THIS is the perfect time for conception. To be so comfortable and relaxed, being in the moment of bliss, passion and calmness and thinking of nothing else but the moment.
So, stress, that’s what keeping a lot of people from getting pregnant. The actual term is ‘Psychogenic Infertility’.
How does Psychogenic Infertility work?
To understand this question we need to know how stress affects the body. Your body when stressed is only concerned with survival, so fight or flight. The reproductive system is not essential for fight or flight so it’s shut down by the brain during these times by producing inhibiting hormones that stop the production of reproductive hormones such as oestrogen, progesterone and testosterone. Without these hormones in full flow your chances of getting pregnant are drastically and tragically reduced.
What is this stress you speak of?
Stress can come from any direction at any time. Unfinished business from the past, worrying about mortgage payments, if Uncle Alex will walk after his knee surgery and of course, the stress of getting pregnant! It’s difficult to accept that the stress of getting pregnant is actually preventing you from getting pregnant! Stress can be obvious and it can be low-level stress, it all contributes to activating those damn inhibiting hormones.
So what can be done?
ENJOY SEX! Seriously, that is one of the main pieces of advice I can give. Don’t plan it, don’t rush it, just let it happen. Take each other like you used to, pretend you’re teenagers again and forget the world and be with each other. If you find you need a little help (psychologically) then I’d be happy to discuss and help remove any unwanted stress from your thinking and check for emotional obstacles to you hearing that magical news that you’re going to be a mummy/daddy!
Why are you still reading? Isn’t there something you should be doing :-)
Without the mental edge to win you and/or your team will suffer. Doubt will creep into your mind, followed by anxiety and loss of confidence. We see it all the time in teams where results go against them and nothing seems to work where it was working amazingly last season.
The mind plays a powerful role in sports as what your mind can conceive, you believe. This works to the positive if you are excelling and can't see it any other way. When you're not focused and in the zone this allows for distractions and negative self-talk and as a result performance slips.
Sports Hypnosis helps you to get back in the zone and focus on your goals and only seeing yourself WIN! Whether you're a horse rider with anxiety after a bad fall or a golfer who's lost their swing, this is all the mental aspect which can be changed for your benefit with hypnosis.
Many famous sports people have used hypnotherapists such as Tiger Woods, Andy Murray, Michael Jordan, Mary Lou Retton and Kevin McBride are just a few. Many athletes acknowledge that sports are not entirely a physical game. A player’s body has to be in shape, but this is only one part of the battle. Sports are largely a mental game. First, a player needs to have the right attitude to win. They need to believe they can win or they will be hindering their abilities with a lack of confidence. Then, a person has to be focused on winning. Doubts, anxiety, and unrelated thoughts can often get in the way of a player’s game. That is why famous athletes use sport hypnosis to relax their mind and focus on the challenge in front of them.
Sport hypnosis helps athletes channel more of their brain power when they play. Anyone can call upon this power and use more of their mind. Using more of one’s mind can help an athlete achieve new records and accomplish things they had not done before.
It is also well documented that injuries heal quicker with the assistance of hypnosis as the body will accept suggestions of inflammation reducing and less muscle atrophy during injury. This has been proved time and time again.
Whatever sport or level you are at, if you feel you haven't yet achieved your potential or you're suffering a blip, then Sports Hypnosis maybe able to help.
Paul Gibson is a Certified Specialist in Hypnosis and Sports Performance.
I don't usually post about TV programmes but I have to mention ITVs new one due to start casting this year - Make a Change.
This transformative programme will follow the journeys of three families around the UK who are trying to help change their parents lives for the better. They hope to touch on a range of issues in the programme, including everything from diet and exercise, to confidence, money, housing and even romance.
I think this is a great way to show Mum and Dad how much they deserve and hopefully set them on their journey to achieving their goals and dreams. There are bound to be some tough times but hopefully the audience will resonate with the chosen families and, more importantly, realise that help is out there if they truly want it. It's possible to get stuck with a negative image/mindset which I hope this programme will help people see that change is possible.
Applications are currently open, so have a look at flyers and get going!
I have the great pleasure of presenting at the UK’s leading Alopecia charity, Alopecia UK, in Manchester in September at their annual conference, but what is alopecia?
Alopecia is a general term used for hair loss; this can be a small bald patch on the head or the loss of all the hair over the entire body. The three main types I will focus on are:
Alopecia Areata (AA)
Alopecia areata is an autoimmune condition which causes patchy hair loss. It can result in a single bald patch or extensive patchy hair loss. The hair loss can happen at any point, although it is most common in people age 15 – 29 and affects 2 people in every thousand in the UK
Alopecia Totalis (AT)
Alopecia totalis is a more advanced form of alopecia areata which results in total loss of all hair on the scalp. According to statistics, about 1 in every 125,000 men and 1 in every 250,000 women have alopecia totalis or universalis. Most sufferers are children and young adults under the age of 40, though it can affect people of all ages.
Alopecia Universalis (AU)
Alopecia universalis is the most advanced form of alopecia areata which results in total loss of all hair on the body, including eyelashes and eyebrows.
My presentation will cover the vastly underestimated effects that stress and trauma has on the skin. It is estimated that 70% of skin problems have an emotional trigger but there is nothing in mainstream healthcare to deal with this which I find incredible!!
The current, mostly ineffective, treatments for hair loss are topical and injected steroids. The NHS doesn’t, as yet, support any other medication as none have been particularly successful if at all.
I’m currently seeing 4 people as case studies to present at the conference. 1 is already showing regrowth from having Universalis, 2 are showing promising results and no growth from the 4th.
Treating alopecia with hypnotic methodologies has been shown to promote regrowth in at least 50% of trial participants but I suggest this number could be more like 75% where the hair loss was due to stress or trauma.
So if you had a pill that could help 50 – 75% of alopecia sufferers to regrow hair, reduce anxiety and depression and had no side effects you’d think this would be a medical breakthrough! This is exactly what hypnosis can do! This will be an area of my talk, how to implement hypnosis into mainstream treatment and design a strategy that could be taught to other hypnotherapists.
I don’t want the medical professionals to tell patients with alopecia that there is no hope, as there is, we just need more awareness to how stress and trauma can keep hair from growing and that the release of that stress and trauma can promote regrowth.
If you have any questions or simply wanted to chat further then please drop me a line, I’d be delighted to talk to you!
It was my great pleasure and honour to be asked to present at this years annual British Dermatological Nursing Group conference. On June 17th I was in Harrogate giving a talk to a packed out lecture room on the correlation between stress and skin disorders and how hypnosis could serve as an adjunct treatment to people suffering with problems such as eczema and psoriasis.
My talk was centred on the lack of understanding/knowledge in mainstream healthcare of the role emotions play in skin disorders. Many people were surprised at how many skin conditions were emotionally triggered.
Off the back of this talk I've been asked to present at this years Alopecia UK charities "Big Weekend" in Manchester, which I'm delighted about! I will be presenting 4 case studies which are currently underway.
I was delighted at the level of interest in this area and it really does fill me with hope that one day the psychological/emotional states of patients with chronic skin conditions will be taken more seriously that to be told "It's just stress".
Everyone wears a mask, either to protect themselves from society or to protect society from themselves.
How many people hide misery and pain behind a smile or chaos behind an “I'm fine”.
Within all of us lies a complex network of hopes, desires, loves, beliefs and a whole other smorgasbord of emotions and behaviours that usually surface at the most inappropriate of times. How do most of us handle this? We put the mask on until the mask can’t hide the chaos any more and it falls and breaks.
Robin Williams was the perfect example. What a wonderful mask he had, he fooled everyone! The man that gave millions so much joy was himself hiding his own chaos. Now I don’t know if he reached out for help or if the help he asked for wasn’t skilled enough to help him through his unique experience, but it was too late and the world is worse off.
You see, what we feel can be so strong that the only way to try to remain sane is to put the mask on. The mask gives us temporary relief from what we feel inside but what we feel inside still rages on, be it love, hate, fear, shame, sadness, guilt, grief and a few others.
We’re created by the events of the past. They stay with us and we can get stuck in them. The past moulds us into what we are today. Some people have had the most perfect mould or they've been raised with strength to create their own mould. Others haven’t been as lucky. To the people that have their innocence taken away in their youth or beliefs so completely against the beauty of their soul then a mask is what they have to wear today.
The past has a lot to answer for. It can build the most amazing person or it can create a person so internally divided that the only option for a world that’s built on order and logic is for that person to put on the “I’m fine” mask.
Newsflash. We’re not all fine. Look behind the masks, be brave, reach out, you may just be the help that person needs.
Personality Disorders – Do they exist?
In order to answer the question lets just break this diagnose down:
Personality: the sum total of the psychological, mental, emotional, and social characteristics of an individual.
Disorder: A state of confusion.
So there we have it. If you are diagnosed as having a personality disorder then at some point you are confused about some aspect of self. This may lead on to other diagnoses such as depression, forms of anxiety, OCD etc etc.
Why do we even need a diagnosis in the first place? Simple - To work out what drugs can be prescribed to you. Drugs with side-effects equal to or worse than the problem itself. The problem still exists with drugs it’s just the very essence that makes you so special has been corrupted and you’ll need those drugs for the rest of your life. How many people with depression have you met who are on anti-depressants? Surely if they were on anti-depressants they wouldn’t have depression? Wrong. Anti-depressants have been shown to be only effective in the most severe of cases, around 30% of all those diagnosed with depression, the other 70% might as well take sugar pills. For every 9 studies into the effectiveness of this medication only 1 shows positive results, but the other 8 studies don’t need to be published!
What I’m getting at is that if you are diagnosed with a personality disorder, a regime of pills should be your last resort. Seek professional help, and I mean professional, not medical. Unfortunately mainstream medicine knows very little about how to effectively help you so you’ll need to seek out someone yourself. You weren’t born with a personality disorder, something has happened to put you in a state of confusion and mental/emotional languish and if you were to really think about it you’d probably find an answer as to why. People like me are trained to get to the cause of your problems and deal with it in a safe, effective way, drug free!
So please, never give up, have hope, help is out there. Call me for an informal chat to see how we can help you.
So where did it go wrong?
Are we really everything of who we are? Did we have a choice in our current behaviours, good or bad?
You are who you are because you were created that way. Your external environment as you were growing into this world shaped you, for the most part, to who you are today. You are a victim/champion of your own circumstances. We are ever-changing and evolving but our main behavioural programs were put in place a long, long time ago.
In society as children we are surrounded by many influential models, such as parents within the family, characters on children’s TV, friends within our peer group and teachers at school. These models provide examples of behaviour to observe and imitate, e.g. masculine and feminine, pro and anti-social etc.
Children pay attention to some of these people (models) and encode their behaviour. At a later time they may imitate (i.e. copy) the behaviour they have observed. They may do this regardless of whether the behaviour is ‘gender appropriate’ or not but there are a number of processes that make it more likely that a child will reproduce the behaviour that its society deems appropriate for its sex.
First, the child is more likely to attend to and imitate those people it perceives as similar to itself. Consequently, it is more likely to imitate behaviour modelled by people of the same sex.
Second, the people around the child will respond to the behaviour it imitates with either reinforcement or punishment. If a child imitates a model’s behaviour and the consequences are rewarding, the child is likely to continue performing the behaviour. If parent sees a little girl consoling her teddy bear and says “what a kind girl you are”, this is rewarding for the child and makes it more likely that she will repeat the behaviour. Her behaviour has been reinforced (i.e. strengthened).
We were born only with two fears, falling and loud noises. Our brain function is limited to that which we need to survive.
Between the ages of 0 to 8 we are like a sponge and as the above suggests, absorb the immediate external world and learn from it how to act and behave in similar situations. So for example, if the boy of 3 years old observes his father hitting his mother then this goes in as acceptable behaviour, as long as there aren’t already stored behaviours on how a husband should treat a wife, the boy is now learning this. If no new behaviour comes along to challenge this belief during this period then that program will be installed. The opposite is also true, if the same boy was around a father who was kind, strong, loving and respectful to his wife then that boy would learn this behaviour is appropriate and therefore would learn it.
We don’t have the benefit of wisdom and experience at this age so, good or bad, we learn from those around us.
Between the ages of 8 to 12 we are forming the ability to be critical, judgemental, analyse and recognise that we now have a pattern of behaviour we can call our own so any new behaviour is checked to see if we already have a response and then either accepted or rejected. Not many new behaviours are absorbed during this period.
From 12 upwards our behaviours are all in place and we are ready to face the world!
Can Behaviour be Changed?
Yes! If you identify an unwanted behaviour it’s because you have simply learnt it, and it can be unlearnt. If you really think about why you do something that is no longer desired then you will be able to trace that behaviour/action to a point of where it was learnt. With hypnosis we can access the part of you where the behaviours are stored and change/replace your unwanted behaviours/habits to more desirable/wanted ones.
So if there’s something you want to change, then get in touch and we can talk about it.
BrainWorking Recursive Therapy (BWRT®) is one of the most exciting developments in psychotherapy today! It's the product of neuroscience and pathopsychology combined with the Triune brain model and Libets 1983 Nobel prize winning research.
Whatever your difficulty, it’s highly likely that this amazing new therapy can help to set you totally free from it. This is a thoroughly modern methodology that draws on the latest research into the the technology of the brain and the way patterns of thought affect our well-being - so if you know just how you would like to be and feel but just haven’t been able to get to it, then BWRT® can help you find it quickly.
How does it work:
BWRT® works by guiding an individual to use their own thoughts and memories in certain ways to help create and strengthen new behavioural, thought and emotional patterns and responses. BWRT® does not require hypnosis, all work is carried out in a conscious state, exactly how you are now when reading this.
What happens in a BWRT® session?
Initially, the principles behind BWRT® will be explained in more detail. These aren’t esoteric in nature, but based on a modern understanding of our brains and thoughts work. Clients will then be guided through the process with eyes closed and in a completely alert state. Sessions are, for the most part, content free, so you won't be required to talk in great detail about your presenting problem/difficulty.
Specific conditions treatable:
BWRT® can be used for a wide range of issues. A few examples include:
Remember, nothing will happen unless you do something to MAKE it happen!
Contact me to find out more about this exciting new therapy!
When people come to see me for weight loss there is usually a common theme, and that is "I've tried everything else."
The problem is that when people go on a diet or join a slimming club they are taught to focus on one thing - food. What you can eat, what you can't eat, times of day to eat, certain foods on certain days etc etc. No wonder dieting is so tiring and ineffective. If you're trying to reform a burglar released from prision do you make him think about burglary all day every day? No!
The thing is food is not and has never been the problem. Food is just a symptom. It's your decision to buy/eat the food that you know will add weight yet you can't stop yourself. Effective weight loss is about changing that decision to the right one for you. Poor choices in food selection can be put down to two things, habitual or emotional. Bad eating habits can be down to lifestyle or learnt behaviour. Emotional eating can be classed as using food to make yourself feel better - eating to fill an emotional need rather than fill your stomach.
In order for change to happen this can take the form of a suggestion for the subconscious to take on board, like a virtual gaastric band, or we might need to explore the reasons why you've got this poor decision making with food.
Whatever cycle of eating you are stuck in, good news, it CAN be broken!
You can make the right decisions about food again, just drop me a line and we can discuss how to move forward to making you feel the way you deserve to feel!
Paul believes hypnosis is empowering and life-changing. Look around the website and get in touch should you have any queries