It is becoming crystal clear how the stress of modern living is so easily overlooked; the pace of life is speeding up and the digital age enveloping us, from toddlers to teenagers, parents to grandparents.
Just how aware are we when it comes to recognising how much stress we accommodate in our daily lives and the impact it has on our mental, emotional and physical health? This is fast becoming an issue in the western world and the alarm bells are ringing loud and clear – does this resonate?
Back in the early nineties, I had the opportunity to live and work in Hong Kong which was an amazing experience in many ways as I got to travel across the Far East and sample the many different cultures and enjoy the exotic beaches, but I also recognised how diverse our world can be, in particular the commercial world to which I became a part of. The business sector was fast paced where everyone appeared to be rushing from one business meeting to another and the ‘pressure cooker’ living and working environment appeared to be the norm.
I distinctly recall waiting to catch the train after work at the Mass Transit Railway one evening and noticing the masses of commuters all making their hasty retreat back from their busy day; specifically I noticed how everyone looked tired, fed up and stressed, shoulders slumped, burdened with the weight of the day. I couldn’t help but wonder where they were all heading off to and whether it was it to a place where they could relax and recharge their batteries in readiness to do it all again the next day. In the expatriate world though, for many, relaxing after work came in the shape of taking advantage of the ‘happy hour’ at one of the many cocktail bars and dining out in the vast array of restaurants with colleagues, where business talk moved from the office desk to the restaurant table.
The mantra ‘work hard, play hard’ became a common theme, but for how long was this sustainable? Stress and anxiety wasn’t something that appeared to feature for the thirty somethings in this fast paced, frenetic metropolis that was Hong Kong central, but in reality both stress and anxiety were lurking behind the scenes and it was only a matter of time before the steam from the mental ‘pressure cooker’ came bellowing out.
So, reflecting back on my life in Hong Kong has been particularly relevant in my work as a hypnotherapist as it has allowed me to appreciate how easy it is for us mortals to regulate and accommodate stress in our lives without recognising just how much we are carrying and how much this influences our mood, stress levels, fatigue, happiness and ultimately our physical and emotional wellbeing.
The traffic queues as we make our way to work, the school run, the workload, office politics, the shopping lists, relationship issues, the mental ‘to do’ lists, it’s all in a day’s work, but today, the digital age has taken over and is at the forefront of our daily lives; more and more of us cannot leave the house without our mobile phones, laptops, ipods, fitbits and the list is growing, how did we cope without them?! We are fill the weekly grocery trolley at 4am, the ‘virtual’ shop is open 24/7. At the press of a button our world opens up to global communication; Facebook, twitter; instagram.
Facetiming and skyping allows us to keep in touch with family, friends, business associates across the world, as if we were in the same room, which is an incredible facility. But the smartphone phenomena is becoming one of the fastest growing addictions in society today and believe it or not can become just as damaging as an addiction to alcohol or gambling. It’s also within the realms of obsessive compulsive behaviour disorder - checking post feeds before turning off the light at bedtime (even though looking at screen light, be it television or technology, within an hour before sleep is a known cause of sleep deficit, resulting in agitation, lack of focus and concentration). Opening up the twitter app first thing on a morning ; the need to know what’s going on in the world is verging on obsessional and this is spanning an age range of 16 to 60 ! Even toddlers are mastering the art of iPads, now that’s incredible ! Does any of this sound familiar ?
Digital detox holidays are becoming increasingly popular as travel companies are promoting the hiring out of villas where there is no Wi-Fi and the phone signal is blocked, doesn’t that sound like bliss? Rest and relaxation in it’s true form, ‘the good old days’ !
Hypnotherapy could also be seen as a ‘detox’ and is a very safe and effective way of rewiring and reshaping entrenched habits and behaviours. particularly those that can significantly impact our health and wellbeing and interrupt the work/life balance. It can be difficult to achieve this with the demands we put on ourselves though, but if we don’t take time out, the consequences on our mental and physical health can be catastrophic; headaches, insomnia and high blood pressure are just a few of the symptoms of life without limits, so it’s no surprise that we are seeking out therapeutic intervention to reduce and eliminate stress and anxiety.
Hypnotherapy is very successful in addressing stress, anxiety and depression that are all resultant factors when we tip that work/life balance. With my help, we can identify the cause of any stress/anxiety and this might be more than being due to packing in too much in your daily life, it may be a past experience, a situational factor, physical issue or relationship difficulties. Whatever brings you to my therapy room you will be taking the first step towards a better way of living. By working together as a partnership, using solution focused techniques, goal setting, committing and engaging with the process, you will start to see and feel the benefits in a relatively short amount of time.
Hypnosis is a very beneficial therapeutic intervention. The subconscious mind is responsible for running our automatic systems such as breathing, keeping our hearts beating and much more. However it is also our archive filing system, for all that we know and believe and this is the part of the brain that I communicate with during hypnosis. Everything that we have learned from learning to talk, walk, ride a bike, drive a car, everything we have consciously learned is stored in our subconscious. When we learned to ride a bike we were consciously aware of pedaling and gaining balance and we did this until it became automatic and at this point it is then stored in our subconscious and became a habit so that we no longer have to concern ourselves with consciously thinking about our actions. The subconscious therefore, is the biggest representation of who we really are and forms all of our belief systems.
The subconscious mind also accommodates our emotions, our personality, how we react to certain situations and much more. During hypnosis, we are accessing the archive filing system aka subconscious mind, that’s filled with memories and beliefs and this is when we have the optimal opportunity to make positive changes to how we perceive things. This in turn brings about a shift in the way we think and how we respond to situations. It can also help to function better on a physical level, which can lead to better health.
If this rings a bell for you and you would like to learn more about how hypnotherapy could help you, whether it is modern day living stress or anything else please contact me for a free, no obligation telephone consultation. I would be very pleased to talk with you.