Monthly Archives: July 2012

Newcastle Hypnosis for Guilt – Nigel Hetherington

Guilt can be a terrible emotion to live with. Hypnosis Newcastle is a way for you to release the often sharp and cutting emotional pain of guilt so you can let go of the past and move on and forward. Newcastle hypnosis can help you learn from your past and keeping the very useful learnings let go of what can be a crippling emotion we call guilt.

When people experience the emotion guilt it can be for a number of reasons. Firstly guilt can be about inaction or action. Guilt can be related to behaviour, thought or both.  Guilt can be experienced by breaking your own personal promises as in yo-yo quitting ( eg dieting, addictions, spending or arguing ) and is very much related to unresolved conflicts of your own personal values.

We can understand guilt and shame to be related to transgressions, that is to say, things a person has or has not done that are not in line with what they believe ( or worse are told ) they should or  should not have done. This feeling is directly related to values be they your own or cultural norms.

A person experiencing guilt re-running past memories, often talking to themselves and as a result feeling very bad. Bad physically and bad emotionally.

Guilt is a Type of Anxiety Disorder

One of the characteristics of anxiety is that a brain scan will often reveal that one hemisphere is more electrically active than the other. Having a real physical sensation accompanying the guilt thoughts would be characterised as anxious arousal and the majority of the activity would likely be found in the right hemisphere.

Guilt is a circular emotion in that the thoughts and feelings repeat much like Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Obsessing about guilt may well be linked to  OCD. In OCD there is a great deal of internal mental activity that is tiring and emotionally charged.

Neurologically there is a circuit in the brain that fires with obsessive thoughts. Nerves in the caudate fire creating the urge to ‘do something’. The caudate is responsible for learning and for kinds of ‘automatic thinking’ like ‘remember to wash’ or ‘is the oven off before leaving the house’. Next the orbital prefrontal cortex is activated which gives the feeling that something is wrong. Then the cingulate cortex is activated which keeps attention focuses on feelings of unease.

The amygdalae will be activated because of stress hormones circulating in the brain and bloodstream. Guilt is a very hungry emotion in that it eats up energy, demands an inappropriate stress response and diverts mental energy.

Prolonged worry, stress and anxiety can deplete the brains neurotramsmitter dopamine which in extreme cases could lead to depression.

Stressing about something is stressing. Excessive stress activates the sympathetic nervous system and this in turn releases adrenaline and glucocorticoids which over time impair the bodies immune system along with the general care and repair mechanisms of the body. In short stress in excess as in excess guilt is really bad news for health, both physical and mental.

Possible Historical Origins of Guilt

In the history of the western religion Christianity the idea of original sin is very closely linked to guilt. On committing a ‘sin’ the resulting feeling will be ‘guilt’ and ‘sin’ here is defined as failing to act in accord with some deity’s rules about how you should live your life. A member of the religions organisation can then help the sinner atone and remove the ‘guilt’.

Guilt or the idea and feelings associated with guilt have been used for thousands of years to control populations of people. As well meaning parents of children and of institutions tell people “you should feel guilty for that!” to attempt to control behaviours or even thoughts.

Approximately 50 years after the birth of Christ ( aka Jesus, Yehoshua ben Yosef ) Saul or later St. Paul after his revelation went to find people who would listen to his message. Paul developed real listeners and followers in Corinth.

Joseph Campbell has postulated the debt and repayment theme in modern Christianity is because the people who propagated the eastern Gospels ( which became the western bible ) where the money lenders of Corinth. So it may be that the worshipping Christ to redeem ourselves before god may have originated in the credo of the merchants of Corinth.

Ignorance and Enlightenment – Remorse Not Guilt

The spirituality of the East has nothing to do with debt and repayment. Instead the Orient in terms of spiritual or some may say religious practice is about Ignorance and Enlightenment.

A great book is ‘The Art of Happiness’ by HH Dalai Lama. One story from the book is regarding a monk that killed himself following a conversation with the Dalai Lama. Although the Lama expresses real regret following on from that conversation there is no excessive guilt, no self punishment, no self induced suffering. A genuine sense of remorse without a crippling feeling of guilt can be a wonderful way to guide your actions in the future.

When dealing with guilt it is incredible important but often most difficult to forgive yourself.  Wisdom comes from great experience and great experience comes from making a huge number of ‘mistakes’. Another way to see ‘mistakes’ are as learnings in action.

Moving Through Guilt By Rethinking What Happened

When anyone who is experiencing guilt, which is by definition about the past, at the time of ‘the event’ they never set out to make themselves feel guilty. Think about it, for anything you may have at one time felt a sense of guilt about, at that time you probably did not before hand say something like “I am going to do this ‘X’ and I will feel so guilty about this afterwards BUT I’m still going to do it anyway.” Or maybe you did! At that time you were in accordance with some higher level value that you may not have been conscious of.

No, at the time you were, whether you realised it then or now, acting out on some personal value that you have. Let’s call a ‘value’ some kind of experience you want ( should do ) or don’t want ( shouldn’t do ) that is important to you.

So at the time, if you come to think about it this way, you were acting in accordance with your values. Now, guilt is a reflexive emotion that now as you look back there is a sense of regret and when it is intense enough, that is to say it conflicts with one of your values now you experience guilt as a strong and negative emotion.

As you begin to let go of the feelings of guilt you will not forget what happened. You will begin to feel differently about what happened but you will use your learnings like a behavioural guide. You can let go of the guilt and allow yourself to experience the real value you were acting out from. Recognising this value and acknowledging that you can both change your values so that as appropriate you can either choose a different way in the future or as appropriate become comfortable in your ways of being.

Sometimes it is very difficult to do this yourself and when you really do need help in transforming guilt into something akin to compassion for yourself Hypnosis Newcastle can help you. When considering hypnosis in Newcastle it is important to understand that the intention is to help you change your feelings about yourself for some event or events in the past. You will not forget those events but use these experiences in ways that can help you live a fuller life.

For professional Newcastle hypnosis for moving on from guilt telephone Nigel Hetherington on 0770 481 8467 or email as described in Booking A Therapy Session Newcastle Hypnosis.

Hypnotherapy Newcastle for Weigh Loss – Nigel Hetherington

Stress, comfort eating, comfort drinking add up over time to overweight, unhappy and potentially unhealthy people. Hypnotherapy Newcastle offers alternative ways to help you change habits of overeating and excess alcohol and manage the stress in your life. Newcastle hypnotherapy for weigh loss can help you create better ways to cope with stress and lose weight. Hypnotherapy is not a magic fix this requires a real and genuine commitment to make changes.

Comfort Eating Is Weight Addition

We have all heard the term comfort eating but what does it actually mean. Well for once the term is quite self explanatory. Eating brings comfort, so we can safely assume that life is uncomfortable or stressful to the extent that people eat sugary, biscuity, chrispy food substitutes to make themselves feel better. The interesting thing is that this actually works to produce a rather short term feeling of comfort.

Research shows that two thirds of people who are seriously stressed turn to food, eating more than average ( hyperphagic ) to bring some comfort into their lives. The other one third eat less that average ( hypophagic ).

The vast majority of overweight people are overweight because of what they eat and their physical activity or lack of it. A small percentage of people are overweight due to biological / genetic predisposition but this is a very small percentage. The former can then be said to be overweight due to the situations and behaviours that drive overeating and excess sugary drinks. These are explored below.

Now, imagine you are one of these over eaters, eating more than the calories you require each day as a way to cope with stress. Your body will cleverly be storing these extra energy reserves for your future in fat cells, saving them for a rainy day or some hyper stress response or even some heavy exercise. Keep on depositing excess calories in your account of energy reserves and you will keep growing and growing while you keep getting fatter and fatter.

Now imagine that you are using alcohol or some sugary drink in excess. Even more calories, even more deposits into the growing energy bank. Drink too much to ease the stresses of life and you are potentially damaging your memory and ability to learn new things. One bottle of wine each night is equivalent in terms of calories to 12 fried fish fingers, yummy. That can be close to 700 calories from booze alone.

Alcohol also slows your metabolism down so you are using up less calories while you are putting more into the calorie bank by consuming excess. That is putting more in than you are using. For example lets say one glass or red wine is 230 calories playing basket ball for around 45 minutes would use this up.

Of course the above three paragraphs tend to paint a rather grim picture of ways people get overweight by having not so good coping mechanisms of dealing with stress. Though, if this is you, some life style changes can help you lose some weight and deal with stress in a better, healthier way. Newcastle hypnotherapy can help you alter your attitude to eating and exercise and can also, even more importantly help you deal with the causes of overindulging.

Yo Yo Dieting – The ‘G’ Spot factor : An analogy

Another night in; another pizza followed by a bag of maltezers all washed down with some fizzy drink made largely from corn syrup. Short term it even feels good.  The following morning you wake up a bit tired, look in the mirror and the slim lithe and muscular figure of your early years has deserted you and looking at yourself this way, thinking about cholesterol and furring arteries you decide it is high time to take stock of your life now so you live longer and have a much better future.

With the best intention in the world you are going to enter into a new era of your life with much better eating habits and you are even considering exercising too. You are imagining getting into your old clothes without a shoe horn or better yet some new clothes that will make you look and feel great. Excellent!

You leave for work, arrive at work … The day continues …

The Guilt ( G ) Spot is where after promising yourself, your friends and even sometimes god you will never eat another cup cake covered in sprinkles you do and then you do it again. After a good bout of porcine grazing you hate yourself and you are all ready to start again.

Weigh Loss : The Parasympathetic System

A very well known hypnotherapist claims they worked with weight loss and did nothing other that do relaxation over 10 one hour sessions and their clients got excellent results. What was going on and how can you help yourself to lose weight without seeing a hypnotherapist? Just relaxation for one hour is activating your rest and digest body systems. This is called the parasympathetic system and this activates in an absence of stress.

A very good reason for why many people that are overweight is how they cope with excess stress. Remember about 2/3 of people who are stressed are hyperphagic that means they eat more calories than they require. And many of these foods eaten or even the act of eating does reduce stress temporarily.

First step is to make an unbreakable commitment to take just 30 minutes per day for a month to meditate or listen to some hypnosis relaxation. When you really want to do this but again and again you slip back into eating and drinking to excess it is time to think about seeing a professional for help.

If you are already saying I don’t have time for 30 minutes each day, think again.

For professional hypnotherapy in Newcastle for weight loss and dealing with stress contact Nigel Hetherington on 0770 481 8467 or email as described in Booking A Therapy Session for Newcastle Hypnotherapy.

Hypnotherapy for Stress Newcastle – Nigel Hetherington

Hypnotherapy in Newcastle and Northumberland to help you remove more of the stress and worry from your life. People characterised as Type A personality are more likely to suffer heart attacks because of their response to stressors and  way overly responsive stress response to every day issues. Newcastle hypnotherapy for stress may help you live a longer and healthier life.

Watch Dr Robert Sapolsky exploring some issues around Type A personality and stress response. Type A personality have these kinds of characteristics : Feeling time pressure,  impatient, boiling on the inside while seeming cool to others, regimented and rigid organisation, joyless and hostile to others.

Hypnosis like meditation will activate the para-sympathetic nervous system helping to counteract the effects of over active stress responses. Newcastle stress hypnotherapy because learning to relax much more could extend your life by lowering stress hormones in your body.