Put simply, hypnosis is the act of guiding someone into a hypnotic trance, whereas hypnotherapy combines hypnosis with some form of talking therapy (psychotherapy)
So, when you see a hypnotherapist, the session usually starts with the talking therapy, eg psychoanalysis, CBT, NLP, counselling or Solution Focused therapy. This is designed to provide you with some level of insight into your situation.
Once the talking therapy is complete, the therapist will then use hypnosis, guiding you into a relaxed trance. This is a very powerful state, which provides the ideal environment for your mind to assimilate what’s been discussed and gain a fresh perspective.
Both elements are equally as important, although it’s not unusual for clients to believe that it’s all about the hypnosis. So, if you are seeking hypnotherapy, don’t be surprised if at least half of the therapy session involves talking with the therapist.
The same principle applies to the difference between hypnotherapists and hypnotists. Generally speaking, the word ‘hypnotist’ refers to someone who performs stage hypnosis as a form of entertainment, although this isn’t a hard and fast rule. There are hypnotherapists who refer to themselves as hypnotists as a matter of personal preference.
Merging talking therapy with hypnosis results in a very powerful combination, and of course the hypnosis is usually incredibly relaxing and enjoyable.