What’s the difference between Hypnotherapy & Psychotherapy?

Have you ever been driving your car along a motorway, or a dual carriageway and your mind has been a million miles away? Perhaps you’ve been thinking about work or family or what you’re going to eat for supper and suddenly it’s your exit and your mind comes back to driving. Maybe you’ve been watching a film or television programme or perhaps you’ve been half sitting, half lying in a comfortable chair in the back garden on a summer afternoon. It’s Sunday, you’ve had a large lunch and you just lie there and allow your mind to wander. You can hear everything around you; bees buzzing in the flowers, the neighbor several houses away mowing the lawn and it’s just so warm and comfortable. Maybe you want a drink, but you just can’t be bothered to move and suddenly several hours have slipped by.

Each of those instances and lots more you can think of are examples of when you’ve allowed your mind to wander off from what’s going on around it. It’s perfectly natural and safe if a car braked ahead of you when driving you’d immediately notice and spring into action and yet while you’re in this altered state of awareness you feel very relaxed. This altered state of consciousness is commonly known as trance, or being ‘in the zone’ and when a relaxed state is induced in a person, change work can be done at the subconscious or unconscious level. This is known as Hypnosis and the deliberate inducement of this state to change a person’s behavior is Hypnotherapy.

Since all learning, behavior, and change takes place in the unconscious mind, most forms of therapy are looking to effect change at the unconscious, rather than the conscious mind. When thinking about Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy as a modality of therapeutic change, it is as well to be aware of some of the similarities as well as differences with psychotherapy.


Hypnosis uses special language patterns (sometimes with music) to distract the conscious mind and allow the client to access an altered state of consciousness to introduce change. Such change will be at the behavioral level such as improved sleep patterns or stopping smoking and the therapist will devise suggestions and spend most of the session talking, with the client listening in a deep trance.


Hypnotherapy is the use of hypnosis for the more therapeutic benefit to the client and would be used for issues such as low self-esteem or phobias through positive suggestions made to the unconscious mind. Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy will concentrate very much on the ‘solution’ to the client’s issues, without much emphasis or understanding of how the problem was created. Learn more at https://www.americanhypnosiswellnessinstitute.com


Psychotherapy uses a much more interactive process where the therapist will, for example, ask a question and through the verbal and non-verbal communication from the client understand how they run their problem or create their map of reality. It will look at the history and upbringing of the client, to gain an insight into their key developmental stages such as relationships with parents and siblings, schooling and friends, so that an understanding can be gained of how the problems were created. If the client can talk about the events in the past, it is possible that missing stages can be revisited and learned so that the problem is eased.


Hypno-psychotherapy is a very useful modality if the client has difficulty remembering the past events, or is not used to talking about feelings. The inducement of a hypnotic trance may be used to help the client with the psychotherapeutic process, allowing them to revisit and understand past events, aiding them to become well again. Learn more at http://www.readingeagle.com

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *