When I mention hypnotherapy, what many of you may be thinking of is clocks, countdowns from ten, and getting put in a trance. But really, it’s a lot closer to guided meditation. Recently, I had the opportunity to have a session with a hypnotherapist. I can tell you with certainty, there were no swinging pendulums to be found.
Keylee Miracle is a board-certified hypnotherapist based in Brooklyn, and her sessions are tailored to each of her clients to help them heal from whatever is blocking them. From anxiety and money worries to traumatic experiences, her method works by helping you look at those differently if you’re open-minded enough to try. Essentially, by putting you in a relaxed state where you may be more suggestible.
Personally, I’ve always been someone who is open to things like energy work, astrology, etc. In my view, you can take something positive out of any experience, regardless of how much you believe in it. That is to say, I came into my appointment with Miracle positively optimistic.
In the lead-up to my session, I was asked to fill out a questionnaire to help Miracle tailor our treatment. I told her that I’ve been having a tough time managing my ADHD lately, and my ability to focus, even on things I want to be doing, hasn’t been all that great. Easy enough, right? No trying to tackle childhood traumas or long-standing bad habits here.
Here’s the thing: the ADHD and lack of focus part was the first half of our session. Then, as our conversation progressed, we got into some more personal things–imposter syndrome, fear of failure, and that ever-present therapy staple: my relationship with my parents. Despite not knowing her before this, Miracle made me feel very comfortable for the entirety of our time together.
When I sat down at my desk for our talk, I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect. Therapy of any kind is personal, and if you don’t vibe with the person you’re talking to, it’s bound to fail. The first time I tried it, as a teen, I had no interest in it. Talking to someone about my feelings? I’d rather have my teeth pulled! (I know, how Aquarius of me, right?)
So being open was definitely key. Otherwise, we would’ve both wasted each other’s time. But it helped that she was so attentive, making an effort to connect with me before we jumped into the session, and explaining anything I wasn’t very familiar with. For instance, her intake questionnaire asks about your Human Design, something I’d never heard of before. Wild, considering I am a product of the internet age and, as such, very aware of personality tests and archetypes. Miracle was also lovely throughout–for everything we talked about, she checked to make sure I was comfortable discussing it and ready to tackle the issue.
I will, however, note that her work, deals with past life regression, something I’m not completely sold on. That was, admittedly, a little difficult for me to get past. My own life already gives me plenty to work through—now I’m supposed to look further back?
It also doesn’t help that I’m not particularly spiritual, so if that’s also your case, I would highly encourage you to reframe it as something more grounded in science. Books like The Body Keeps The Score and It Didn’t Start With You are great reads to learn more about how certain experiences can be passed on genetically without our knowledge!
But was hypnotherapy effective? I can hear you asking.
Truthfully, I think so. Near the end of our conversation, I was asked to look forward into my timeline instead of backward and picture my life three months from now. What was I doing? What did I want it to look like? That answer will differ for each person, but ultimately, it won’t happen unless you work toward it.
Obviously, I can’t speak for the long-term effects. Maybe by mid-summer, I will be where I pictured. Maybe I won’t. But I still left that session feeling lighter than I had been in months. In the following days, I tackled a personal writing project I’d been struggling with for a while. I let myself cry over something else. I felt unstuck.
I left that session feeling lighter than I had been in months.
While I don’t think hypnotherapy is perfect, nor the answer to all problems, I do genuinely believe if you are open to it, it can help. Keylee Miracle’s services aren’t cheap; my session was comped so I could write about the experience, but a first-time session usually costs $3,000 and she offers 15-minute consultations to help work out whether this may be a good fit for you.
For some people, getting ‘unstuck’ in life is priceless, so the investment may be worth it. And if that’s out of your budget, start small by yourself: Think of something that has been hindering you. When did it start? Why is it blocking you? What steps can you take to change that?
With my ADHD, a big part of what I’ve been struggling with lately is feeling like I must always be productive, and then getting down on myself for not achieving that unrealistic goal, ultimately trapping me in a cycle of executive dysfunction and anxiety.
Instead, after my session I have chosen to focus on the affirmations Miracle and I came up with together: I have value outside of my work. I can start things without feeling like they need to be finished right away. It’s better to do something imperfectly, than do nothing because I’m afraid it will fail.
Did that cure my ADHD? No. But it has helped me treat myself more kindly in spite of it, and hopefully, once you figure out why something may be getting you stuck, you can also work on giving yourself more grace in dealing with it.