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Introduction to Fresh Focus Therapy

1. What inspired you to start a practice that combines Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and Hypnotherapy?

2022 was a bit of a transformational year for me. I went through CBT therapy myself where i learnt a huge amount. Turns out I’m an introvert when I spent my whole life acting and assuming I was an extrovert. I was also not prioritising myself or my wellbeing, and was offering great advice about self confidence, but I was crumbling inside. As part of this, to address my ongoing anxiety, I stumbled upon hypnotherapy to help curb my alcohol consumption.

And so after developing my career in Marketing & Tech I was seeking to learn something new in my spare time, and coincidentally I found out about the Uk College of Hypnosis & Hypnotherapy. I signed up and haven’t looked back.

Initially I planned to study to simply expand my own knowledge, however based on my own experience, and what I have learnt on the course I see there’s a real opportunity to combine my passions together. As someone who has struggled with anxiety, depression, self esteem and personal confidence issues, I have experienced and seen the benefits of therapy. I am passionate about debunking some of the taboo around mental health and talking therapies. Alongside that I am a lifelong horse owner, a very average competitor and had one too many falls to list here. In my horsey world I am surrounded by brilliant people and have a wonderful community, but I also see the insecurities, endless competition nerves and rider confidence suddenly disappearing all the time.

And that’s why I created Fresh Focus Therapy. Combining CBT & Hypnotherapy (CBH) to positively change thoughts & behaviours through online Hypnotherapy specialising in professional & equestrian performance

2. Can you explain the fundamental principles behind CBT and Hypnotherapy and how they complement each other in your practice?

CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) is a well established, NHS backed therapy approach that focuses on addressing and improving peoples thoughts feelings and/or behaviours. This approach is ideal for a range of issues such as anxiety, depression, negative thought, behavioural issues such as bad habits etc.

Hypnotherapy, which has evolved a lot over the years and has been recognised in reports by the British Medical Association (BMA), American Medical Association (AMA), American Psychological Association (APA), and British Psychological Society (BPS).

By combining CBT & Hypnotherapy (CBH) we are able to work with clients to help discuss their negative cognitions and help devise more positive ones, and then through hypnotherapy practice, embed and instil those in the patients mindset. Hypnotherapy allows the client to visualise, practice and ‘experience’ those new cognitions before applying them to real life.

For example, if someone is fearful of public speaking, we can identify how they would like to feel i.e. positive, confident, calm. We will then induce the client into hypnotherapy and together walk through and practice the target scenario together until the client experiences it without anxiety but instead those calm & confident feelings. As such, when they go to face that situation in real life they already have considered what could or couldn't happen and are well versed in that new cognition.

As part of our sessions together we will discuss and customise this approach to suit the individual and their thoughts, feelings and behaviours.

3. What types of issues or conditions can individuals expect to find relief from through your CBH approach?

CBH is very well suited for a range of mild to moderate mental health issues. Anxiety in a range of forms such as public speaking, workplace discussions, self consciousness and assertiveness alongside depression such as negative self talk, negative mindset or poor self belief. Furthermore CBH is great for habit reversal ie nail biting, hair pulling, as well as phobias such as medical, animals or situational.

Fresh Focus Therapy can support with all of those but specialises in workplace anxiety and sports performance, in particular equestrian. Rider mindset, competition nerves and overcoming fears no matter what level you are, Fresh Focus Therapy is there to help you.

4. Could you share a success story or case study that illustrates the effectiveness of your unique therapeutic approach?

Recently working with an eventer who, despite big ambitions, was becoming increasingly anxious leading up the days and hours before the event. This resulted in a negative experience for her, those around her but also her horse. We all know our horses are incredibly intuitive animals and she was noticing her horse was picking up on this nervousness and was starting to lose his own confidence. As such their performance had declined and as a combination she was left unsure what to do.

Together we worked on a number of key events and used CBT & hypnotherapy to practice a more desirable mindset. The client wanted to address her warm up arena experience. Previously she spent a lot of time comparing herself to others and found herself anxious in the warm up ring and the holding pen. All of this resulted in issues in the main arena. Through 3 hypnotherapy sessions we reduced the pre event jitters and greatly reduced her comparison on the day. As a result she was left not only confident, but excited about a large upcoming competition and noticed a much more calm manner on the day.

5. What qualifications and experience do you bring to the practice to ensure clients receive the highest level of care?

I am completing my Diploma with the UK College of Hypnosis & Hypnotherapy. The Diploma is accredited by NCFE, a government regulated national awarding organisation.

Alongside that I have had a long career in marketing, having first hand experience in navigating difficult and complex environments. I have coached and mentored several young men & women, helping them overcome workplace challenges and empower them to take control of their careers.

Finally, I have owned and ridden horses all her life and currently owns Bertie, a 17hh British Warmblood who, together, enjoy riding club activities. She has had experience with breeding and breaking in youngsters, carriage driving, showing at a national level and also dealing with bad falls and knocks in confidence!

6. Many people may have misconceptions about hypnotherapy. How do you address these misconceptions and educate your clients about the process?

Hypnotherapy has had a long and varied history. People now typically associate it with swinging clocks, people dancing like chickens on stage or people wandering around in a gaze. But there’s much more to it than that. Yes all of those things can be deemed ‘hypnotherapy’ but that is stage hypnotherapy.

What CBH focuses on is the individual. We are here to help them overcome their challenges in a way that suits them. CBH is an entirely collaborative approach whereby the client is fully in control the whole way. You can find out more on our FAQ’s here.

7. How do you tailor your therapy sessions to meet the individual needs and goals of your clients?

Every client is different. A large part of our sessions will be a discussion, you explaining your current thoughts feelings or behaviours. For example how you may feel anxious in certain situations, or how you’re having negative self talk or self doubt. Together we wild ensign new more positive statements, how you’d like to feel. These will be your words to ensure it really resonates with you. I will also want to spend time understanding other factors about your issue. The scenario, the people around you, the physical sensations. This will help me really personalise the hypnotherapy so you can truly envisage the scenario and practice your new positive cognitions.

8. What can potential clients expect from their first session at your practice, and how can they prepare for it?

Our first session will be our assessment session. This will largely be a discussion where we will get to know each other, learn a lot about the topic(s) you’d like to discuss and agree on a treatment plan. I will be totally transparent with how many sessions I think you will need, but we typically expect 4-6 sessions.

During this session I’d love you to share as much information with me as possible so I can truly tailor it to your needs, everything is confidential so we encourage our clients to be as open and honest as possible. We will also agree on goals in this session. Whilst it may be tempting to request that you are “happy all the time”, whilst this is admirable, it’s not practical or indeed measurable, so we would want to focus on specific goals, timelines and scenarios to really ensure you see and feel the benefits after treatment. Note we may need to break topics up so we can really focus on one thing at a time.

Quick Fire Questions

  1. What was the last book you read? I am an avid fan of audiobooks and podcasts, but a real life book..... it’s called ‘A Company of One’. Inspiration for helping me grow and develop Fresh Focus Therapy.

  2. What's your go-to karaoke song, and can you sing a line from it? I absolutely hate Karaoke, I am a terrible singer and find it way too embarrassing. I do however love to sing at home when no one is listening and it’s usually something from a musical or Disney!

  3. If you could instantly master any skill or talent, what would it be? Singing (see above)

  4. What's the most unusual food combination you enjoy? I just love peas. I could eat a bowl of peas all day long. Frozen, cooked, whatever!

  5. What's the most adventurous thing you've ever done, or the next adventure on your bucket list? I am a bit of a daredevil so I will try most things. I did a skydive many years ago which was absolutely thrilling. My next adventure, set up my own business, that seems daunting enough!

  6. If you could be a fly on the wall, where would it be? I am a true crime junkie and have a massive curiosity about the prison system. I would want to be a fly on the wall in a prison to see what it’s really like. But make sure I’m let out at the end of the day!

We'd love to hear from you if you have any questions about CBH or if we can help you. You will always get a non judgemental, honest response. Get in touch here

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