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  • Sarah Wellband

Trauma - years or weeks to resolve?

Updated: Jul 28, 2023

My mentor — Tim Box, who devised the CONTROL System — often recounts a story from the time he gave a demonstration, during which he told the story of successfully treated a client suffering from trauma within three sessions. He was approached by three psychologists in the bar after the event and they asked him whether he knew that trauma took years to successfully treat. He simply replied “I didn’t know that”.

So how does remedial hypnosis deal with trauma in three session?

Image a conversation between the conscious and subconscious mind in the immediate aftermath of a traumatic event, a car accident* you were responsible for, for example.

Subconscious mind “what the fuck happened there?”

Conscious mind “It’s OK, the accident happened because I was looking at my phone. I won’t do that again.”

Subconscious “Idiot. Now I know why it happened I don’t need to worry about it happening again, because if you ever look at your phone again when you’re driving I’m going to remind you of this moment”.

Now imagine a car accident that has no discernible cause.

Subconscious mind “what the fuck happened there?”

Conscious mind “I have no idea, it just happened”.

Subconscious mind “Right. I need to find an answer because I need to make sure this never happens again. I’m going to look at the accident from every possible angle, I’m going to rerun the events in your mind over and over again until I can figure out what happened and how it can be avoided in the future. I’m doing this for your safety and happiness because that was horrible and neither of us want to experience this again”.

If this client booked in for a remedial hypnosis program because they were too traumatised to drive, which is often the result of an unexplainable accident — the subconscious triggers fear or anxiety at any thought of being in a car to be absolutely sure there’s no risk — we start with an initial consultation to discuss what the client wants to change, what difference this will make to their life and how the process works. We also test to see if the subconscious mind is able and willing to communicate independently of the conscious mind.

In the first session we agree on the session goal(s), talk about where the client is now and where they want to be at the end of the process. We also examine any possible barriers or objections to getting to the desired outcome.

We then turn to communicating directly with the subconscious (who, of course, has been listening into this conversation). Firstly I thank the part that’s been working tirelessly to find the answer — because it’s been doing it for what it believed to be the right reason; keeping the client safe. I would then ask it if it realised that there was no possible answer and never will be and that its work was fruitless, it’s akin to attempting to complete a jigsaw puzzle with several pieces missing from the box. When that part of the subconscious is made aware of that, then it will accept that it’s no longer needs to keep looking for a resolution. The next step is simply to ask the subconscious to stop; there’s no satisfactory answer and the search is making the client unhappy.

Once the subconscious makes the necessary change, the client will feel it immediately. They will still remember the traumatic event but the emotional connection has gone — it no longer has any power to evoke unhappy or distressing feelings. The change is permanent; once the subconscious has deleted the thought pattern it can’t return.

The second and third sessions are designed to consolidation the change, to talk to any other parts of the subconscious associated with the trauma and to make sure there are no residual fears or concerns.

So, years or weeks. What would you chose?

*I used a car accident as an example — the same process is applicable and is as equally successful with any trauma or PTSD, plus numerous other issues such as anxiety, phobias, bad habits, pain and depression.

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