So very many people contact me regarding hypnosis for smoking cessation. I often broad-brushstroke smoking cessation, calling it one of the garden variety hypnosis techniques, along with weight loss, though it is sometimes the most critical key for health and wellbeing. Stop smoking and many other benefits fall into place; improved health, social interaction, confidence, peace and a little more money in the pocket too!
Most people I work with have been smoking at last 15 years, but usually at least 20, 30 or 4o years. Even though so many have good intentions to quit, the thing that is the biggest motivator is illness or restriction of normal life. Either they can't breathe, can't move, or don't feel well. Each client I work with is a unique individual who identifies with smoking in their own way.
Conversely, while we all experience the act of smoking and the habit uniquely, there are similar pieces to the experiences which are common to many of us. I say this as I am an ex-smoker.
Most of us have taken many years to become a smoker, and have hung onto the habit or addiction for dear life! Concurrently, most people want to know if they can quit in one session. Some can, but others need to learn to be gentle with themselves and participate in their wellness by giving themselves a chance to quit, an opportunity to be healthy and move on from a long-time habit. Many call it their old friend! There is sometimes an adjustment period.
I encourage my clients to give themselves a break and acknowledge that it may take a bit more time than just one session to quit. For details about how hypnosis works, I refer you to an earlier blog – 10 Misconceptions About Hypnosis.
Ask yourself these two questions:
On a scale of one to ten, ten being the greatest, how great is your urge to quit smoking?
Have you already cut back in anticipation of quitting?
If on a scale of one to ten your urge to quit is at least an 8, you are ready. If you had already cut back, even better!
How about these questions:
Are you afraid you will gain weight if you quit?
Do you feel that deserve to be healthy and can take a little time to restore full health?
Do you acknowledge that smoking is bad for you?
Some of these questions will reveal deterrents to quitting, along with many other possible roadblocks to success. These can be overcome when we uncover them.
For those of you who want to know how hypnosis helps as an aid to smoking cessation, I offer the following structure:
What to expect in a smoking cessation program:
- Motivation and Confidence
Learn how to build a strong desire to stop smoking. Reasons to quit and benefits of quitting are covered. You will easily learn tools for permanent release from smoking habit.
- Overcoming Past Connections
In order to quit successfully, we must change what cigarettes mean to us and the connections they have in our lives. Patterns that aid in our smoking habit are also re-routed, as are fears about what would happen if we quit, like gaining weight, or losing break time.
- Creating New, Healthier Connections
Time to reprogram our minds with healthier choices. Great guided visualization of cleansing our bodies of the toxins smoking leaves behind.
- Preventing Relapse
This session cements the value of quitting and provides help with avoiding a smoking relapse. Each hypnosis session is 45-60 minutes in length. Clients reported that not only was quitting easy, but that the sessions were relaxing and helped them with every day stress.
- Tune-ups post quit date - Into each life some rain can fall. We react to the stress around us, and sometimes fall back on our old coping habits while dealing with stressful life issues. Smoking can be one of those old habits. With daily simple, relaxing practice and acknowledgement of this stress, we can quit permanently. 30 minute tune-up sessions are available to reinforce as needed.
Supplementary Hypnosis Sessions
Along with the basic 4-session set described above, additional 20 to 30 minute hypnosis sessions targeted at these specific issues:
- Handling feelings without cigarettes
- Weight management
- Assertiveness / people skills
- Energy and concentration
- Pairing smoking with unpleasant experiences – also known as aversion therapy
I hope this clears up some questions about hypnosis. Make your decision to quit today!