As a hypnotherapist, if a client discusses suicidal tendencies I send them off to the GP. I am not a medical doctor and suicidal tendencies are an emergency. I am ethically bound by my hypnotherapy associations to refer such clients for medical attention. However, I have had many clients who used to have suicidal tendencies, but are now simply depressed or lack that all important sense of optimism.
Depression falls into two broad categories from my perspective – psychologically based and medically based. Yes, they are connected in most cases where the brain chemistry becomes unbalanced due to the emotional state, but often this can be reversed with therapy. I have seen many of this type of client who have been prescribed drugs for their depression but who came to see me because the drugs were not working, and I have been able to help most of them.
Then there are those people who might have physiological causes for their depression, such as psychotic illness, and I cannot assist there. So let’s talk about psychologically based depression, or reactive depression that is not caused by chemical imbalances in the brain, that I can assist with.
James and His Suicidal Tendencies
When James came in to see me he told me that he used to want to kill himself, but now he was coping, though not very well. He was also seeing a GP and a psychologist at the same time. Skip to the end of our third session and his words to me were: “Where have you been all my life”. It was one of the nicest compliments I have received from a client. What James meant was that he had, in three short weeks, gone from being stuck in his spiral of negative thinking to feeling empowered and confident. It was very satisfying to witness.
James was stuck in a loop. He had a sad ending to about every episode of his life, even those things that hadn’t happened yet. His expectations were zero. He had tried many things and always spiralled back to zero, the proverbial flatline. What really worked for James were the three simple activities that i gave him to practice. One activity was a pattern breaker technique that i got him to use whenever he felt that sinking feeling, and after a week that sinking feeling was much less. After two weeks it was an occasional visitor rather than a resident, and after three weeks it had packed its bags and left town.
I also worked with James’ unconscious mind to help him integrate the two parts of himself that seemed to be at odds – this lingering depression and the other James, that confident, optimistic guy. Then we explored the true purpose of James’s depression, which stemmed from an inferiority complex, and we discovered that its purpose was to protect James from further disappointment by keeping him down. So this protection role was key. We then sought alternative ways that James cold feel protected, without having to do depression. Finally we looked at James’ inner child and assisted him in upgrading that little boy so that his unconscious mind was no longer emotionally stuck in that period of his life.
James had an outstanding result with our sessions because he was prepared to do a few simple activities. You see, depression is a pattern, especially when it has its roots in suicidal tendencies, and to break that pattern you need tell your unconscious mind, in it’s own language, to stop. Understanding the language of your unconscious mind is not logical, in fact it is the opposite of logic, it is emotive, symbolic and very child like. If you don’t use the appropriate language, how can you expect your unconscious mind to understand? James was really good at doing those 2-minute activities that effectively told his unconscious mind to stop its old routine. Then James was also really good at doing the simple things we came up with to help create a new pattern.
If you are ready to feel well and are prepared to spend a few minutes a day to reinforce our clinical work, you will also have a very good chance at success. So, if you would like some assistance with your depression, we can help. If you currently experience suicidal tendencies however, please see your GP. Horizons Clinical Hypnotherapy Sunshine Coast