I’ve heard it said, mainly from the tabloid press, that you have to give the people what they want. Unfortunately, we don’t always know what is best for us.
As we know from advertising, people can be highly suggestible. Do we really want that mug that says, ‘coffee, it’s a hug in a mug’ or have we been brainwashed?
If you force feed people something for long enough, they’ll believe it was their idea in the first place. I’ve a friend who doesn’t like Meghan Markle despite the fact they have neither met her or heard her say any more than ‘I do’. She doesn’t want her kids photographs on the front page of the papers, so what? Would you? The press did a hatchet job on Princess Diana and Sarah Ferguson. Here we are again. For my money, anyone who can’t bear Piers Morgan is doing something right.
Most of us are open to suggestion, for good and bad. I undo a lot of ‘bad trances’. Some people have been told since they were a kid that they are ‘stupid’, ‘ugly’ or ‘fat’. If someone you fear or respect tells you something often enough, it can become your reality. It doesn’t matter what your friends or the mirror says, those negative feelings become hard wired. Feelings beat logic every time.
We benefit from positive suggestions, too. Every time we make someone feel valued or important, we reinforce good feelings. Be careful how you talk to your kids, folks. Children are great learners and they absorb information like it’s going out of fashion. They learn a lot through example- if we teach them how to be sad and angry, those patterns might stay with them in to adulthood.
Recently, the Jeremy Kyle show bit the dust and I cried exactly zero tears. For years we’ve had a culture of television exploiting the most vulnerable members of society and calling it entertainment. These people need professional support, not public humiliation. They are sold on a quick fix but there isn’t one.
Some conditions that I treat only take a few sessions to clear. For those that come to me after suffering a lifetime of pain, there is no making it right in an hour. Most people know that I am a therapist rather than a magician (even though hypnosis is pretty magical). Despite this, I get the odd phone call from people who want a ‘get out of jail free’ card.
A lady recently called to ask me a few questions. She wanted to book just one session. Could I stop her smoking weed, can I erase the memory of a one-night stand and can I hypnotise her to pass a lie detector test. The answers were probably, no and no. She didn’t say goodbye before hanging up, but then again, she hadn’t said hello either.