Hypnosis and self-esteem

Sometimes, what we think of ourselves has little to do with who we really are or even how others see us.

Sometimes, what we think of ourselves has little to do with who we really are or even how others see us.

by Irene Conlan — 

Robert Burns, the Scottish poet, penned: “Oh wad some power the giftie gie us. To see oursel’s as others see us!”

On a scale of one to 10, with 10 being the highest, how much do you like yourself?

This question elicits responses ranging from “minus two” to the rare “10” and offers a quick assessment of your self esteem — how much you like yourself. Your self esteem is a powerful determinant of your choices, your behavior, your relationships, your job selections — in short, it determines how much you participate in and enjoy life.

Sometimes, what we think of ourselves has little to do with who we really are or even how others see us. Generally, we judge ourselves in the harshest way. Some who are very bright believe they are stupid, and then try to live up to this belief. Still others, who are gifted with great talent or ability, see themselves as worthless and fail to recognize and develop their amazing gifts. Handsome men or beautiful women who hold appearance in high importance but believe they are unattractive will rarely seek to be at the forefront of a group.

How is our self-esteem formed? It is the result of the experiences we’ve had, the teachings we have received, the responses other people have exhibited toward us or our interpretation of those responses. It comes from basic beliefs about who we are as human beings. It is the result of the sum total of our human experience and how we have reacted to it. Big, huh?

We puts rewards on being beautiful, smart, rich and thin and judge ourselves according to how we think we measure up.

What is the result of low self-esteem? If you do not like yourself and have little confidence in your choices, actions and responses, you will probably not take the best job, find the ideal mate, or seek challenges and their accompanying rewards. You will say, “Thanks, but no thanks,” when opportunity knocks.

You may sabotage yourself at every major decision because you are afraid you just cannot perform adequately. You may avoid meeting important or interesting people because you fear they will not like you or that you will embarrass yourself in front of them. You will likely assume that everyone else has their act together and they would never want anything to do with you. (If you really believe that everyone but you feels successful, visit any book store and look at the shelves crammed with books on self-improvement.)

“So,” you ask, “if I do not like myself very much, what can I do about it? Can hypnosis really help raise my self-esteem?”

It is possible to change how you see and accept yourself, and hypnosis is an outstanding tool to help you begin seeing yourself as worth it, worthy and good enough. Hypnosis works with the subconscious mind, which does not know the difference between what is real and what is imagined. This allows you to reframe past negative experiences and your responses to them.

You can use hypnosis to change the negative images you hold about yourself and build positive new ones. You can discover what you truly believe and let go of old limiting beliefs that no longer serve you. You can use affirmations and visualizations that can contribute to helping you accept, respect and like who you are. After all, as a dear friend and therapist friend of mine says, “What is not to love?”


Irene Conlan has a master’s degree in nursing and is a certified hypnotherapist and a certified past life regression therapist at The PowerZone in Scottsdale. The PowerZone Ministries teaches ceremonies and conducts ordinations. or

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 24, Number 6, December 2005/January 2006.

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