Creating a Partnership Between
Conscious and Unconscious Processes
for Hypnotic Healing
An article by Michael Carroll
I have been working in the field of Neuro Linguistic Programming and Hypnosis as a Trainer, Coach and Hypnotist for over 25 years now. In this position, it’s a great privilege to be part of an individual’s life transformation and I never cease to be amazed at the power and effectiveness of NLP and Hypnosis for helping people have access to new choices in their lives.
In my early days as a Coach and Hypnotist, my work focussed on psychological challenges people were experiencing in their lives. Gradually over the years there has been a shift where now a significant portion of my work is supporting people with health issues to regain their health. The range of health challenges I work with is varied across the spectrum. With more chronic conditions the work focuses on providing the clients with coping strategy to work through their illness, as well as support in dealing with the side effects of any medical treatment and also working through any emotional challenges as well as engaging the unconscious to activate natural healing processes.
I call this work Hypnotic Healing, as the models I have built are a tapestry of patterns drawing upon the field of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP - Grinder and Bandler), New Code NLP (Grinder and Bostic), and Hypnosis. The premise of Hypnotic Healing is to use hypnotic patterning to connect deeply with choices inherent in a client’s unconscious mind and establish healthy choices.
I am not trained in medicine, so of course I do not make any medical recommendations to my clients. Most of the work is complimentary to the treatment prescribed by the medical professionals, so the Hypnosis works in conjunction with the medical treatment.
From my observations, Hypnosis tends to accelerate the healing, bringing a faster recovery than stated in the prognosis. Some clients do choose not to have traditional medical treatment for their illness, and in doing so seek alternative methods for healing. This is not something I recommend, but naturally I respect peoples’ choices.
The nervous system acts like a messenger within our body-mind, receiving and processing messages from the outside world and passing the messages on to other systems within the body-mind, e.g. immune system, endocrine system and lymphatic system. Harmony within the systems mentioned, mediated by the messenger (nervous system) will promote good health and well-being.
For the purpose of this work, it’s important to take into account the different forms of consciousness. There is the conscious mind, which represents our moment to moment explicit attention and the unconscious mind which represents everything in our system we are not consciously aware of. Conscious processes are relatively small in volume compared with the unconscious processes, which include all the physiological and biological elements in the human body, as well as psychological factors which determine are individual personality.
The vast amount of information in the unconscious has hugely different functions. For example, all elements of the body system are within the unconscious mind. The immune system, digestive system, endocrine system, nervous system and so on are unconscious processes and remain out of conscious awareness untilthere is a problem. Only then do we become acutely aware when conscious attention is alerted to the problem, often through pain, which of course is a clear signal to pay attention to what is happening in the body.
The automatic nature inherent in the human body, means we rarely have to think about the incredible minute to minute functioning that I happening below our heads. You do not have to think about engaging your immune system to combat germs and diseases and you do not have to instruct your lymphatic system to cleanse your body, as these processes happen naturally without thinking. In healthy people, the aforementioned systems, when functioning normally are far removed from any thought processes.
When there is a problem in the body, the unconscious mind sends a signal via the nervous system. The signal is frequently experienced as pain or some other physical response. A simple example is if you ate a very heavy lunch excessively, your digestive system will signal through indigestion that it is struggling to break down the food you have consumed. Chemical shifts in our body through stress and also diet, could create an ulcer, that ulcer is the unconscious mind’s way of saying ‘change something.’
The above logic can be followed through to more serious issues such as heart disease. With heart disease, what we consume has an impact on our heart as well as the ongoing daily load some people unwittingly inflict on their body through stress factors.
In 1970s, the co–creators of Neuro Linguistic Programming, Grinder and Bandler created a series of operational assumptions for the practice NLP. One of these assumptions was ‘the mind and body are a linked system.’ Today most medical practitioners and psychologists would openly accept the mind - body connection, however the hypothesis was a lot more radical in 1972.
In New Code NLP we take the mind - body presupposition a stage further and consider the mind and body as part of the same system, with every thought (mind) being expressed in the body and every feeling (body) being expressed in the mind. The notion we present is these are more than linked systems, they are different processes within the same system. This ideology of the mind and body as one body-min.
Daily, conscious processes can and do have a huge impact on our health, such as our thoughts, language, and way we deal with life issues that arise in our relationships, business and choices in all aspects of life.
For the last three centuries, thinking has been promoted as superior to feeling and sensing. Thinking is unique to human beings, and we can even manage to have diverse conversations with ourselves on conflicting topics, convincing ourselves of a position on a life topic and completely change our minds the following day.
The expression ‘I think therefore I am’ (Rene Descartes) positioned the logic of thinking (not always logical) over the processes of ‘being.’ Being is the process inherent in the body. Thinking is the key feature of the conscious mind, and the conscious mind seeks to dominate with its thinking.
When a person lets their conscious attention be dominant, it could be said the person is living in their head. Such head dominance leads to disconnection from body awareness, so apart for perhaps the primal needs of going to the toilet, hunger and sex, the person living in their head has little awareness of their body. Such dissociation is unhealthy on the basis without body awareness the messages from the unconscious mind signalling a change in the system are not experienced and a health issue develops unnoticed.
One of the key premises of the Hypnotic Healing system is to build a partnership between the conscious and unconscious mind. In this partnership the conscious mind can take the role of organiser (rather than controller), and the unconscious can take the role of provider, providing the necessary resources for healing and well-being. This may seem simplistic, but such a partnership between the conscious and unconscious puts the mind and body as one and is the route for a healthy life.
About the Author
Michael Carroll is the Founder and Course Director, of The London Hypnosis Academy (LHA), a specialist company which focusses on bringing Hypnosis to the public for life improvement. The London Hypnosis Academy is the sister company pf the NLP Academy, which Michael founded in 1996, and is now the global leader of NLP Training.
You can learn more about Hypnotic Healing in a two day Online MasterClass, Michael is running on 17th and 18th of September 2022.
For more information click here.
Thank you for reading this article, your comments are welcome below
Comments are facilitated by a Facebook plugin, if you do not see a comment box, please log into Facebook and return to this page to leave your comment.