With my feet having barely touched the ground of my office this week following my holiday, yesterday really got things going here at The Anglo College of Therapeutic Hypnosis.

Yesterday the Hypnotherapist Academic Year at this college began with a fabulous one day seminar delivered by college tutor, and exceptional hypnotherapist Lindsay Shepherd.

Lindsay trained at the Anglo European College Of Therapeutic Hypnosis what seems like a great many years ago and has been an incredibly valuable diploma course assistant for a number of years and during those years, she has become a good friend of mine. Since she qualified, she has run a a very successful hypnotherapy practice in Bournemouth. As a former marketing director she also helps therapists develop their businesses. She was a runner up in the 2013 Venus Business Awards. An amazing ambassador for the field of hypnotherapy.

In recent years, Lindsay has been a major inspiration to me and many others as she publicly applied her work to herself and has successfully reduced her own weight by 9 stones.

As a result of her research on the subject of obesity and weight loss, her work with fitness expert Jessie Pavelka, Lindsay became an expert in working with clients who are classed as Super Morbidly Obese, and one of her clients has reduced her weight by 17 stones, another by 15 stones!

Lindsay was my guest on the Hypnosis Weekly podcast talking about her work with the super-morbidly obese and such was the feedback we received that it made sense for her to run a one day CPD workshop here at the college showing people how to successfully work with clients who are classed as obese or larger.

In the UK we are experiencing an obesity crisis, research suggest that more and more of the population will die from diseases related to obesity. When people think of the type of work Hypnotherapists do, weight loss is one of the first things that they think of. In fact weight loss hypnotherapy is complex and can often be difficult to achieve good outcomes.

Lindsay explained and demonstrated how the key to success in this area is to have a through understanding of obesity and the many elements involved in offering a hypnotherapy weight loss program.

Having provided class with some insight and clarification on the definitions of obesity, how it is measured and the prevalence of it, she explained the causes and consequences of obesity and the class engaged in lively debate with her as the prejudices were discussed.

As well as her own experiences being shared, Lindsay shared research, how she conducts her assessment, the ways she tasks her clients and the types of interventions she employs in a typical treatment plan. As I always do, I discussed the day with the delegates afterwards and received some incredibly impressive feedback, and I picked up several great tips from her relaxed teaching style that will certainly influence the way I teach in this upcoming academic year!

Lindsay Shepherd Hypnotherapist

The workshop was filmed and will be available in our Platinum members area in the next week or so, I strongly advise those of you that are members to go and study it closely.

Once the workshop had finished, I met with my regular group supervision ladies and gentlemen. These are all hypnotherapists who have trained with this college, some of whom have been in professional practice for a number of years, some of whom are recently qualified and though they understand and uphold the principles that are taught at this college, have a diverse range of approaches and preferences when it comes to hypnotherapy.

Yesterday was particular stimulating for me. The cases that were presented for discussion and supervision were very interesting and the group dynamic was such that a huge amount of value was provided to all. We also had the opportunity to discuss some classic issues that hypnotherapists tend to face and the input, support and sharing of information was astounding. It is such a valuable and productive session, the two scheduled hours zipped by. It was heavenly for me.

An hour later, we welcomed hypnotherapists from around Dorset and Hampshire for our quarterly hypnotherapist peer support group. The planned evening was changed and our original main speaker was unable to attend due to a very sad family issue. Everyone present and everyone involved with the college here sent and continue to send Lucy Hyde our love and kindest thoughts.

After I had introduced the evening, Mark Green stepped up for his first poetry reading of the night:

Mark Green Hypnotherapist

Hypnotherapist and recently published author Mark Green gave us three poetry recitals from his book “Hypnotherapy Poems of Peace: Volume 1, A Mind’s Journey” – This was and is something quite unlike anything I have read and experienced within the field of hypnotherapy. Mark spoke to me about this project that had taken him a great deal of time and energy (and heart and soul!) and asked me if I would consider writing the foreword to the book. Having read the book before publication, I felt honoured to write the foreword and invited Mark to come and give us a reading of some selected poems from the book. It was lovely to listen to Mark as he offered up poems that were poignant, thoughtful and at times incredibly personal, it felt like a privilege to be able to share that.

Here is a photo of my copy, duly signed copy by the author himself:

Hypnotherapy Poems of Peace Volume OneLindsay Shepherd stepped in as guest presenter for the first part of our evening together and talked about the ASA, CAP and all things advertising that are incredibly important for us hypnotherapists to know as we develop our businesses in an ever growing public forum of media and social networks. Her years working in the advertising field and her very diligent research meant she offered up a depth of knowledge and information that is very valuable to hypnotherapists as they present their businesses to the world.

After Mark’s second reading, I presented a lecture that I have not given before, on a subject that is close to my heart currently. I wanted to turn upside down some classic themes and notions that are prevalent in the fields of self-improvement, personal development and therapy in general. I shared evidence based notions of proper therapeutic applications of the Stoic technique of ‘negative visualisation’, how imagining the worst case scenario can actually be useful for our clients at times, and illustrated and highlighted the concept of ‘hedonic adaptation’ and the ‘consumption treadmill’ that is common in Western Societies today and how to use simple processes of acceptance and gratitude as underlying themes and practical antidotes.

These three articles will give you a flavour of some of the themes from my lecture:

Using the Worst Case Scenario For Benefit With Self-Hypnosis

Evidence Suggests That Being Materialistic Could Be Making You Unhappy – But Here’s The Antidote to That

Using Stoic Negative Visualisation With Self-Hypnosis

Mark Green gave his final poetry reading that was incredibly relevant to the nature of the evening, and the evening drew to a close. I got to have dinner and drinks with one of my best friends who travelled from Belgium to be with us for the evening and we set the world to rights as we love to do. What a day! Immersed in the field of hypnotherapy on many levels with numerous friends and fellow hypnotherapists sharing a sense of community and a desire to develop. My sincere thanks to Lindsay Shepherd for all her contribution yesterday, my thanks to Mark Green for bearing his heart to us yesterday and offering something refreshingly different and fascinating and my thanks to all those who were present and continue to support what we do here – I hope you all derived much value. I am really looking forward to our next quarterly gathering in December.

So the academic year has kicked off with a bang! The second half of this year’s intensive hypnotherapy diploma is in a few weeks, our next monthly diploma commences in just over a month’s time, and next week we announce our 2016 training schedule with the announcement of numerous new courses. Happy days!