I find myself in a strange occupation – hypnotherapy. I consider it strange because even people who come to me for my expertise in it don’t really have any idea about what it is or what it can do. Many of them expect something akin to magic, and even though I go to great pains to explain that magic it isn’t, I sometimes find myself producing magical results. And that gets me to think about magic. True magic is akin to what religious people might call miracles. Only mere mortals, like myself, are not allowed to perform miracles, that is the realm of God and his/her/its minions.
Yet on occasion I have indeed produced results that if I proclaimed myself as a messiah, might well be termed Miracle. I must admit I’m much happier calling it magic. But what exactly is the difference between miracle/magic and something else?
I believe that the only difference is TIME. If I take six sessions to bring about a change and some progress is visible between each session then that is therapy. And it looks a lot like physical healing. If I take ten minutes to bring about the same change then that is miracle/magic.
It does not seem to matter that the result is the same either way, fast is what gets the praise, fast is what gets people talking.
And yet I know from my experience working with people that fast is frequently the very worst way to bring about profound change. The problem with fast is that there is no adaptation. If you have had a problem for a long time, then you have adapted to it. You live your life around it, you adjust your activities based on the problem. If in a moment the problem is gone then all of the coping strategies are instantly redundant and there is a psychological chasm now. This is an inability to deal with life without the problem.
When change time is slower, it is much easier to adapt. You do it quite naturally a little bit at a time.
Another aspect of the Time problem is that most of us have been taught that nothing worthwhile comes easily. So although we might all want instant healing, if we get it, effortlessly, then we do not value or appreciate it. We doubt its effectiveness. I’ve removed or reduced quite severe pain in a matter of minutes, and my patients leave wondering whether or not I’ve somehow tricked them (after all, the doctors’ said nothing can be done), or when it will return. Now I know that if you spend most of your waking time wondering when the pain is going to return then it probably will because the mind is focused on pain and the mind produces what it focusses upon.
So the benefits of slower ‘healing’ are that it allows adaptation to the beneficial change and that there is actually a price (the time spent in therapy and the cost of that therapy) so it must be worthwhile, therefore it will be valued and appreciated. From the patient’s point of view they actually worked quite hard turning up for appointments and listening to me talking for an hour and a half and they paid quite a bit of money for that privilege. These things make the healing acceptable.
The only problem is that they wanted what they didn’t really want – magic!
Author: Michael J. Hadfield