Hypnotherapy Techniques

Just as every client is an individual with a unique set of experiences, issues, and goals, each of my private sessions is exclusively tailored to provide the best results. I have a wide range of techniques available and I choose those that will best fit the needs and goals of my client. Techniques include, but are not limited to:

Hypnotherapy

Hypnosis is a pleasurable state of focused relaxation that catalyzes expanded perspectives and access to higher levels of awareness. Through the trance state of hypnotherapy, the conscious mind has greater access to the wisdom and memories stored in the subconscious mind. It’s like meditation on steroids. Hypnotherapy provides a “container” within which to discover patterns, choices, relationships, past lives, soul purpose, and much more.

You may be surprised to find that hypnotherapy is much different from what you might see on television. No slumped bodies, clucking like chickens, or other entertaining (and embarrassing) antics. That is “stage hypnosis”. In reality, hypnotherapy is a different field, a healing art, although some of the same induction techniques may be applied.

Using one of a number of gentle induction techniques, you’ll find yourself relaxing into a wonderfully peaceful state. Once there, you’ll begin to explore memories, perceptions, relationships, patterns, and other pertinent perspectives. The result is the development of new, more useful, patterns, behaviors, and attitudes, and the resolution of trauma, addiction, and self-sabotage.

In the LaBay Method of hypnotherapy, once the hypnotic state is achieved, a number of techniques are applied to reach the stated goal for the session. At the end of the session, the client emerges from trance and resumes normal wakeful functioning, remembering all that they have explored and discovered..

Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP)

These techniques are mind-boggling! Originally developed by Richard Bandler and John Grinder, NLP has grown in popularity as a method of catalyzing rapid change. In its pure form, NLP is conducted without hypnotherapy, simply open-eyed and in the everyday conscious awareness.

By combining the focused trance state of hypnotherapy with the powerful techniques of NLP, we quickly understand the obstacles, and find the surest way to a breakthrough. The LaBay Method of Integrative Hypnotherapy combines hypnotherapy with NLP and other modalities, creating a profound and rapid pathway to self-awareness, desired change, and sustainable wellbeing.

TERMS YOU MAY FIND IN HYPNOTHERAPY AND NEURO-LINGUISTIC PROGRAMMING:
  • Induction: Have you ever tried to stop in the middle of a busy day and clear your mind in order to meditate. It isn’t easy, is it? An induction is a gentle guided visualization that grounds, centers, and clears your mind so you can relax, focus, and explore.
  • Guided Imagery: A narrator (or therapist) tells an imaginative, descriptive story to guide you into relaxation, a safe space, or metaphor useful to your session.
  • Safe Space: An imaginary place you create that brings you a sense of relaxation, protection, and connection to your higher self.
  • Empowerment Symbol: This is magical! Technically it’s an anchoring technique I developed that’s a gift given by your higher consciousness to bring you specific energy and character traits to assist you throughout the session and your life moving forward. It’s like a Harry Potter magical tool that really works!
  • Regression: This is a journey backward along your timeline from the present to various important moments in your history to discover the event that initiated a habit or emotional response.
  • Secondary Gains: You’ll love this if you want to discover the underlying pros and cons that are associated with any behaviors or conditions that may sabotage your life, goals, or efforts to change.
  • Parts Therapy: If you struggle with decisions or experience inner conflict (we all do), this technique rapidly sorts it out.
  • Inner Child Work: I’ve created an effective version of this psychology tool that brings healing of childhood traumas without having to relive any of the details. That younger you will be done having a tantrum and will be ready to go out and play.
  • Object Imagery: Perfect for sensations of pain or blocks, you’ll create an image that delivers its message along with a pathway for it to be resolved to healthier functionality.
  • Reverse Metaphor: This is a technique that I originated that allows the client’s subconscious mind to reveal its secrets and perspectives to the conscious mind through storytelling. This can be utilized to allow your client to become their own psychic, and is also useful in dream interpretation.
  • Desensitization: Trauma, PTSD, fears, and phobias, oh my! When you’re afraid, it’s frightening to think about facing your fears. This technique allows you to gracefully and calmly resolve the fear without having to relive any details.
  • Chair Therapy: Relationships, oy vey! They are the best and the worst, and they bring us great opportunities to learn and grow. This technique is applied when resolving relationship issues between family members, colleagues, friends, and others, as well as supporting the grief process and creating closure. Interesting fact: a high percentage of people report that after their session, the other person actually changed! Proof that we can telepathically communicate with other people? You know I’m a believer!
  • Swish: This is a dizzying whirlwind of a process, but it works on many levels to resolve unwanted habits, anchoring new responses to troublesome stimuli.
  • Role Model: Why wait to try on your new results? Step right in and experience a new, improved version of yourself, to anchor fresh perspectives and behaviors.
  • Future Pacing: Once you’ve achieved your new perspectives and behaviors, carry them into the future along your personal timeline to strengthen sustainability over time.

My experience and skill set allow me to hold the space, lend additional energy, and choose the specific tools to reach your goals. It is a beautiful and life-changing experience!

Past Life Regression

Ah, my favorite!

I know many people are still considering whether past lives even exist, but how will you really know unless you open your mind to the experience of past life regression and try it out. Or, you can rely on the testimonies of millions of people who have recalled their other lifetimes.

Not only do you have countless other lives, recalling them is fundamental to self-knowledge and any serious spiritual growth.

As a specialist in past life regression therapy for over 30 years, I’ve been a forerunner in innovative ways to facilitate these sessions. With so many techniques available at my disposal, my clients are always successful in retrieving memories of other lifetimes and the experiences between lives.

Beyond reviewing the events of another lifetime, it is possible to do so much more:

  • Understand your soul purpose as well as your life purpose
  • Gain insights into relationships
  • Resolve karmic issues and cycles of behavior
  • Heal otherwise unexplained illness, disease, personality quirks, addictions, phobias, and fears
  • Remember hard-earned wisdom, skills, and talents acquired in other lifetimes
  • Communicate with your past life aspect to share wisdom, lend support, and suggest options
  • Experience the time between lives to reduce the fear of dying, gain insights into the death experience, communicate with spirit guides and helpers, learn about your decisions for this life and your purpose for this incarnation
  • Explore your role in history and how it affects you today
  • Access clues to your soul’s purpose

Exploring past lives not only deepens your self-awareness but aids in enhancing your memory and expanding your entire consciousness.

Personal Coaching, Gestalt, and the GROW Model

Sometimes it’s more beneficial to have a discussion about your plans and decisions without using the trance state. My coaching techniques allow you to clarify your thoughts, expand your choices, pinpoint your true desires and goals, and set a course of action to move forward in your life.  

At the client’s request, many sessions include a combination of coaching and hypnotherapy for the best results in attaining the stated goals.  

My philosophy is that our bodies are a most precise instrument of communication between the conscious and the subconscious minds. If we pay attention to what is happening on all levels—body, mind, emotions, energetic—we can have all the information needed to make corrections and adjustments, to create sustainable happiness and wellness.

Gestalt Therapy, developed by Fritz Perls and others, is a practice of acute mindfulness applied within the therapy setting.

Throughout the session, awareness is drawn to the present experience, both for the client and for the therapist, on all levels mentioned above.  As the discussion continues around the topic of the session, the participants engage in “high noticing” of the internal responses experienced. When combined with hypnotherapy, this is a powerful protocol for responding immediately to the signals produced through the wisdom of the subconscious mind—and making the desired changes and corrections.

On a deeper level, it is engaging with and responding to the intuitive wisdom of the higher consciousness.

The GROW model is an effective tool that is recommended by the International Coaching Federation. Composed of four steps, it guides the client through

  • Goal – setting a specific outcome to be achieved
  • Reality – exploring the present state of the issue
  • Options – outlining opportunities and choices available to the client
  • Will – creating a plan for action steps the client agrees to put in place

This is a rapid method for shining a light on any quandary and quickly moving to resolution.

Sacred Journeys in Counseling

Turn on your innate psychic abilities! Tune into your inner wisdom, meet your spirit guides, spirit animals, and totems, and receive guidance and wisdom concerning your past, present, and future.

A shamanic journey traditionally involves a shaman guiding a participant through a visionary world to collect pertinent information, guidance, and wisdom. Shamans are the “medicine people” of indigenous tribes around the world. They are typically those who have the ability to access the spirit world while in a state of altered consciousness.

In my private practice, I’ve created a modified version of such a journey I call a Sacred Journey, useful in opening communication with spirit guides as well as with the participant’s higher self or subconscious mind. In my version, the practitioner and client stay in dialogue to provide an enhanced experience of personalized feedback, support, and guidance.

The Sacred Journey is a fascinating adventure through the landscape of the participant’s higher consciousness, lush with wisdom and awareness, and opening the gateway to access the spiritual realms, including guidance from spirit guides and other supporters.

Specific goals are often set in mind as the participant enters the Journey, such as resolving an issue, gaining an understanding of a decision at hand, or peering into the future of their life path to see what lies ahead. Their subconscious mind is also allowed the freedom to reveal its previously unknown message. 

Soul Retrieval in Counseling

If you’ve ever experienced trauma, fright, or given away your power in a situation, it caused a loss of soul fragments (energy) or character traits (such as innocence, trust, independence, creativity). The Soul Retrieval technique, modified from shamanic style traditions, gives you the opportunity to locate and reintegrate that soul fragment into your life.

In traditional versions of this technique, the shaman travels through the “worlds” to locate and retrieve the missing fragment. The work is completed by the shaman, and the participant may not have any awareness of what has occurred. Shamans are the “medicine people” of indigenous tribes around the world. They are typically those who have the ability to access the spirit world while in a state of altered consciousness.

My modified version of Soul Retrieval involves my client relaxing into trance, regressing to an earlier age (or previous lifetime) to locate a trait or part of the personality, soul, energy field, or consciousness that has been left behind. Clients have stated a loss of a sense of innocence, trust, spontaneity, independence, joy, power, creativity, and so forth. Most likely, these traits are still present but have become inaccessible to them. These parts of the personality or soul have simply been fragmented, hidden, taken away, blocked, forgotten, given away, or discarded.

Once the fragment is located, the circumstances of the loss are explored and therapy techniques applied to strengthen and correct the problem so it is unlikely to happen again.  

Once the client is prepared, they are able to reintegrate the soul fragment.

It is a beautiful and gratifying ritual that empowers you on many levels.

Spirit Guide Communication

Spirit Guides are our “unseen” helpers. Although many titles have been used to refer to them, such as angel, guardian angel, guards, and such, a true spirit guide is a being whose role is to guide you on your journey: encouraging, inspiring, challenging, and lending wisdom for the sole purpose of your spiritual growth. When you have a true spirit guide, they are present with you for your benefit and spiritual growth. They do not have to make it easier on you, although they frequently lend assistance. If they deem it more beneficial to make things harder, for the benefit of your spiritual learning or your soul growth, they may take that route. Imagine the doors that will open when you can receive clear messages from your spiritual helpers. Establishing your relationship with your spirit guide is truly gratifying and will bring life-long guidance and assistance.

Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT)

EFT is a fascinating and easy tool that provides rapid relief from negative emotions. It involves a series of self-administered taps on the head, hands, and body that relate to specific meridian points. Meridians are the lines of energy that run through the body and are often associated with acupuncture procedures.

I’ve witnessed remarkable results with clients who have improved their golf game, released an obsession, removed headaches, released pain and negative emotions, and so much more.

After this technique is used in a session, I offer you a diagram and instructions to you so you can continue to practice this technique whenever it is needed in your life moving forward.

Eye Movement Therapy

There is a theory that memories are stored in the brain through our sensory channels, most notably visual, auditory, and kinesthetic. There is a correlation between these sensory accessing modalities, and the direction that the eyes move. For instance, when we are attempting to remember something that has been stored in our visual channel, we tend to look up. When we recall something we heard, we tend to look to the side, in the direction of our ears. While remembering something we felt, we tend to look downward.

When disturbing memories are being processed, moving the eyes from right to left while looking up, looking straight ahead, and looking downward can dislodge the intensity of that event. Likewise, when new feelings and perspectives are accessed, eye movement therapy may help to anchor them.

In my practice, eye movement is applied only occasionally in context with other techniques as needed.

Applied Kinesiology

Also known as muscle testing, this technique may be used to ask the subconscious mind to respond to yes and no questions. Using a distinct connection between a person’s thoughts and the strength of their muscles, the body reveals what the higher consciousness already knows.

While used only on occasion in a hypnotherapy or coaching session, muscle testing is a powerful tool that can be incorporated when warranted.

This is an alternative therapy process, and is not used in my sessions for diagnosis, evaluation, or prescribing, but rather to explore and broaden options when the client is feeling stuck or answers are not readily available.

Further, when a client has strong abreaction—a severe and sustained emotional response such as uncontrollable crying—a variation of applied kinesiology is effectively used to calm and desensitize that particular emotional trigger.

Astrology in the Therapy Session

What will the stars reveal about you? A person’s natal astrology chart provides a cornucopia of information that can be aptly applied to coaching and therapy sessions. The chart provides a type of roadmap of the personality that points to pertinent conversations and directions for a productive hypnotherapy or coaching session.

Prior to our session, I’ll use a computer program to access the natal astrological information. I use both the natal chart alone and combined with the current planetary transits.

Although there are no claims to absolute, unfailing accuracy, from a person’s astrological chart one might discover the following tendencies:

  • Basic personality
  • Communication styles
  • Learning and thought processing
  • Approach to values, finances, money, and spending
  • Favored subjects of interest
  • Career choice and direction 
  • Relationships with mother and father
  • Romantic relationship preferences
  • Emotional make-up and reactions
  • Compatibility with others
  • Spirituality leanings
  • Current stresses and concerns
  • Opportunities for growth and forward movement in life
  • Karmic lessons stemming from past lives

By consulting the chart, I get a very quick glimpse into the personality and tendencies of my client that otherwise may take a long discussion. We typically don’t take up a lot of time with the chart findings, though I welcome a longer discussion about the chart if the client is interested and requests it.

Tarot Readings in the Coaching Session

A most fascinating tool, the Tarot traditionally consists of 78 cards with drawings that depict various circumstances and characters, numbers, and symbols. Tarot cards may be one of the most versatile, portable, and illuminating tools available for gaining perspective, wisdom, and insight into the past, the present, and the future.

Clients can ask questions about relationships, finances, career choices, health, dream interpretations, communication from guides—any topic at all. Depending on how you frame your question, you can learn almost anything about a situation: hidden and unexpected details, confirmation of known facts, the motivation of the people involved, past life influences and events, alternative and creative perspectives, guidance, outcomes of choices, the path ahead, and so much more.

Tarot readings can be incorporated into any counseling or coaching session, or it can be a stand-alone session

Mary Lee LaBay Hypnotherapist Past Life Regression Therapist and Spiritual Coach

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