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District Meeting | “May I Have this Trance?” Modern Clinical Hypnosis Practice for Social Work Clinicians - An Introductory Class

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What Clinical Hypnosis is: Hypnosis has been called an “experiential method of doing psychotherapy.” It can be usefully thought of as “applied imagination.” Imagination comes from the Latin verb Imaginari “to picture oneself.” Skillful use of hypnosis utilizes the client’s imagination therapeutically, often in conjunction with other therapies such as CBT and or medications. Simply put, it is the science and art of engaging a person’s belief system and expectations to foster endogenous (having an internal cause or origin) healing. What it isn’t: Clinical Hypnosis is not a therapy and is not a therapeutic theory. It is also most certainly not like what happens in the movie “Get Out!” or other entertainment venues. It should only be used with clients by trained professionals able to treat psychological and behavioral issues without hypnosis. We will learn about hypnotic trance and how it aids imaginative work. Trance states help to activate our parasympathetic nervous system. Trance can be defined as a state of “highly focused attention with diminished peripheral awareness, enabling an openness to suggestion.” Trance can be induced or can occur naturally during everyday life. Such naturally occurring states are called “common everyday trances.” “Metaphors Be with You;” We’ll touch on the power of words, stories, imagery, past developmental experiences and metaphors to suggest optimal therapeutic outcomes to the client. These tools depend greatly on taking a careful history of the client at the beginning of treatment. You will hear about important elements of the history of hypnosis; the extensive database of clinical research over the past two hundred years into the efficacy of hypnotic treatments; contraindications for it’s use and an overview of which clinical areas it is most effective in. We will discuss hypnosis’ exceptional utility for clinician’s self-care and well-being which were frequently noted by UCLA psychiatric residents.

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