|With hypnosis you can stop smoking easily and effortlessly. Almost all of smoking is psychological, so hypnotherapy attacks smoking where it lives - inside the mind. There is actually very little physical addiction, so nicotine is not really important in stopping smoking. Hypnosis works on the inner mind and removes the source of the need to start smoking again. With hypnotherapy there are no cravings, no willpower needed, no weight gain.
It is actually easy to stop smoking.
Under hypnosis you can find your deepest beliefs about smoking and change them. Smoking is all about inner beliefs. Most people started smoking in late teens, at a time when your body was changing, you were transforming from a child to an adult, a time when you formed all sorts of new beliefs about yourself, who you are and what you can and can't do. At that time you were using cigarettes to help you fit in, to be a rebel, to look cool, to get through new situations, and your mind formed powerful associations between smoking and being able to fit in, to assert yourself, to be independent, to make friends and be treated with respect.
The first time you succeed at something, your mind forms strong bonds between what you are doing and how you are feeling. The result is an automatic link, an unconscious association, a belief that you cannot do one thing without the matching thing. And if you form the belief that you deal with stress by smoking, and you need smoking to make friends, or smoking makes you look cool, then you have a problem. Because your mind believes that giving up smoking means giving up the ability to make friends, or you will never feel 'cool' and accepted again. That is why smoking is so hard for some people to give up. Their mind fights desperately against it in order to not be friendless, to not look like a dork again. That is what cravings are, your mind's desperate attempts to get you to start again so that you will get back those benefits you need to be you. That is also why some people can just stop in a day - they didn't form the automatic associations. Hypnosis works to remove these beliefs, to break the associations. Once these beliefs are gone so are the cravings.
How long does it take?
Most people give up for ever after one 90 minute session. Each person is different in terms of how long they have smoked, how many they smoke a day and why they smoke. Each has a bearing on the issue but most people give up immediately and never think of a cigarette again.
A few people start wavering after some weeks and need a second session; but in general, most people are able to stop permanently and with no cravings or weight gain, and are happier and healthier from there on.
How Does Hypnotherapy Work?
People who smoke are not weak, or lacking in character, or natural addicts. The problem is in your mind, not in the cigarette. You can go 'cold turkey' - people do. You can grit your teeth, go live in a tent somewhere without cigarettes and after a week or so you are no longer smoking. But as soon as you get back to your familiar surroundings all the triggers are there waiting. As soon as you hit the first bit of normal stress your own mind can betray you. If you believe that you cannot handle stress without a cigarette then the pressure will build until you take one. Going cold turkey gets rid of the physical addiction, but it does nothing about the belief system that surrounds the act of smoking.
The physical effects are not what keeps you smoking. After two days all physical craving is gone. If you start smoking again it is not because you need the nicotine. It is because some part of your mind believes that you cannot function without cigarettes and actually doesn't want you to stop smoking.
It is your own mental beliefs that are the problem.
The Stop Smoking Action Plan
To stop smoking you need to address three separate areas. There is the effect of the nicotine, the false beliefs about smoking, and the situations that act as triggers to remind you to light up.
The Physical Habit
The physical addiction of nicotine is actually quite mild. People often have self fulfilling beliefs about how addictive tobacco is and how difficult it will be to give up. Therefore the first part of the therapy is aimed at correcting the client's beliefs about how easy it is give up, and giving the client post hypnotic instructions about how they will feel after they throw away their cigarettes.
This is reinforced by teaching a replacement behavior. Psychology studies show if an existing behavior is associated with a new physical behavior, the old behavior rapidly goes into extinction, and the desire to do that behavior fades away as well. So this part of the treatment consists of teaching you a new physical response to use any time the desire to smoke occurs. This new response gives you something to do with your hands, it takes the place of the cigarette until the link between stress and reaching for a cigarette is broken, and then the behavior fades away with disuse.
Beliefs about smoking
The second part of the therapy focuses on your beliefs about the role that smoking plays in your life. Smokers often are convinced that they cannot relax without a cigarette, or that their best ideas only come when smoking, and other self justifying beliefs. In extreme cases clients believe that smoking defines who they are, and that stopping smoking somehow will diminish them. These beliefs are removed with a mixture of direct hypnotic suggestion and metaphor therapy.
For the long term smoker, all sorts of situations have become associated with smoking. Most smokers tell themselves that they enjoy a cigarette after a meal, with a drink, to give themselves a break. These are all highly charged situations and the smoker has created powerful conditioned responses to these.
Hypnosis is used to create new mental associations with meals, breaks, coffee, driving - whatever it is that the ex-smoker associates with smoking.
By using this three-part approach smoking gets beaten forever.