Sussex columnist: Trying hypnotherapy as a way to cope with the frantic pace of being a mum
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I’m pretty sure subsequent columns have touched on the same issue – because, let’s face it, parenting is a journey and there will always be bumps in the road.
But it was after this particular column that hypnotherapist and women’s self-belief mentor Amanda Cole reached out to me.
As a mum of two young children herself, she said she recognised the daily struggles parenthood throws up, and offered to take me through a sample, guided hypnotherapy session to give me an idea of how it can help to reframe your thoughts and give you more confidence in your parenting abilities. It sounded like a bit of a no-brainer to me, so I met with Amanda last week.
Amanda trained as a hypnotherapist in 2013 while she was working in corporate events, but it was after she got made redundant during the Covid pandemic that she decided to make the move to it becoming her full-time career.
During this time, she also trained as a hypnobirthing practitioner, and she now provides one-to-one hypnotherapy sessions, hypnobirthing services and also runs group empowerment sessions for women on Zoom.
Amanda, who is based in Worthing, said: “I think women can feel a lot of overwhelm these days, especially when they see people posting their ‘perfect’ lives on social media. It can be really hard to see, and that’s where hypnotherapy can be helpful, to reframe your thoughts. What I do won’t make your children behave better, or stop those difficult moments from happening, but it will help you feel less stressed and overwhelmed.
“It’s fulfilling to take people on that journey and be able to help them.”
I had no prior experience of hypnotherapy, but I assumed Amanda wasn’t going to wave a pocket watch in front of my face or try to turn me into a chicken.
Her mindful and transformational hypnotherapy is not stage-based, but focuses on helping you to reach a deep stage of relaxation, where the conscious mind takes a back seat and the subconscious can listen more clearly.
It uses elements of NLP (neuro-linguistic programming) and CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy).
She said she focuses on not using negative language and quickly builds a rapport with people, to put them at ease and find out the kind of imagery and language that resonates with them.
I felt really comfortable in her company, and as she took me down into a deep relaxation, her voice was really calming and soothing.
As it was my first session, my conscious mind did take a little while to calm down and be quiet, but by the end of it I did feel really relaxed, and calm. And the effect lasted pretty well for the rest of the day.
While I was in the relaxation, it was just that – incredibly relaxing. I love that hypnotherapy gives you space to take time for yourself, calm your mind and visualise somewhere idyllic to you.
Instead of taking time for yourself feeling like something you should be ashamed of, or apologise for, it brought into focus just how important it is.
Life is always going to be a bit crazy, but it can be so much easier to cope with if you give yourself a bit of self-care.
I can see that a few sessions of hypnotherapy would be beneficial to me.
For anyone who isn’t comfortable in one-to-one sessions, Amanda offers a mums’ empowerment programme, which she runs in small groups over Zoom.
It aims to transform your thoughts and habits to help build resilience and confidence, so you can be the mum (and woman) you want to be for yourself and your kids. There are sessions for new mums, as well as those with older children, and Amanda provides resources to download and listen to at home.
Even spending just a morning with Amanda has made me determined to prioritise my self-care, and not to feel so guilty for doing something for myself rather than the never-ending list of things I feel I ‘should’ be doing.