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How to Become a Hypnotherapist

As intriguing it may appear, becoming a hypnotherapist entails hard work and a deep understanding of human psychology.
Puja Lalwani
The world of hypnosis and hypnotherapy has always appeared intriguing. And then there are some who want to go as far as learning how to hypnotize and use hypnosis as a means of treating various issues.
From past life to weight loss to quitting smoking, the principles of hypnotherapy have been applied and used to treat all issues pertaining to these areas and more. However, before you decide to become a hypnotherapist, there are a lot of things you need apart from an education. These include your personal qualities and abilities.
You also need to know that hypnotherapy is not only about swinging pendulums and eerie voices, and getting people to behave the way you want them to. It is vastly different from what is portrayed on television. It is used to treat people of various problems.

Skills Required

The reason we are looking at the necessary skills before we look at the procedure to become one, is because, only if you have the necessary skills, will you be able to decide whether hypnotherapy is the right field for you.
An aspiring hypnotherapist should possess the following skills:
  • A genuine desire to help others
  • Empathy and sensitivity
  • Patience
  • An understanding of the human psychology
  • Committed towards helping people finding and dealing with their problems
  • Readiness to deal with people from all backgrounds
If you think you are armed with these qualities (some of which will be honed in the course of your education), here's a look into the educational requirements.

Educational Requirements

Hypnotherapy is the process of utilizing the principles of hypnotism to treat various conditions that include behavioral problems, deep-seated emotions such as guilt, fear, and phobias, and as mentioned earlier, even weight loss and quitting smoking.
It is considered as a field of alternative medicine, though now the field is more recognized in its independent form by various states. The requirements to become a hypnotherapist vary among various states, so before you start, it is a good idea to find out what they are. However, there are certain requirements you need to be able to practice hypnotherapy.
1. Though it is not compulsory, having a graduate level degree in psychology, psychotherapy, or counseling would be of great help. Studies in these subjects will give you a deeper understanding of the human mind, and will help you understand the intricacies of hypnotherapy better. Some states may require you to be a practicing psychotherapist before.
To practice hypnotherapy, you should be a certified hypnotherapist. Going to a school that offers a suitable course is essential. While a lot of online courses are available for this, going to an accredited and renowned hypnotherapy school will ensure that you receive quality education that will back you up well when you start practicing in this field.
2. The curriculum should ideally consist of subjects that train you in age regression, imagery and visualization techniques, revival from hypnotherapy treatment and post-hypnotic suggestions. Though the cost of a school may be higher than an online course, schools will generally provide you with state level certification, which an online course may not do.
Further, education in hypnotherapy is something that should be studied in a classroom setting, among others, as it is a very humane subject. An online course will not have the same impact as will a course at an accredited school.
3. A minimum of 100 hours of study in hypnotherapy is what qualifies an individual as a professional hypnotherapist. This process may take anywhere between six months to one year.
However, for certification from the American Council of Hypnotist Examiners (ACHE), you must complete at least 200 hours of education from an ACHE approved school, licensed by the state board of education. To become a certified clinical hypnotherapist, the minimum instruction period is 300 hours, followed by the aforementioned requirements.
4. Apart from receiving formal education, networking with certified professional hypnotherapists, and understanding what the entire process of hypnotism entails, learning the basics of management, and reading up as much as possible on hypnotherapy will ensure your success in this field.
After your course, gaining an internship with an ACHE certified hypnotherapist will give you the necessary skills and experience to start off on your own.

Like any career choice, the field of hypnotherapy is one that requires a lot of hard work. Once you put in the efforts, the results will be there for you to see yourself.