The Art In What You Do Holds The Magic of Hypnosis! Teaching Clients Self-Hypnosis.




A big part of what I do is assist people in discovering their own resources. I am not some oracle of wisdom bestowing divine direction in life for anyone. I can’t be, I only am able to do that for myself just as each individual can only discover that for themselves. Not necessarily by themselves with no outside help at all. That is where you come in as a Counseling Hypnotherapist. It is much like Dorothy and Glenda the good witch in the Wizard of Oz. A fitting metaphor for how I see what I do as a counseling hypnotherapist in the world. It fits me oddly well.  I don’t do magic like Glenda, but what I do with hypnosis, suggestion, metaphor, and trance can seem magical. That’s not me, that magic is within every individual client. I just ask some questions and let them tell me what they need and how to do it. Most importantly I show them how to create hypnosis for themself. If they have experience in going into trance even once, they can remember how to return to that state just by remembering how it felt, how it looked, how they got there in the first place. Perhaps just recalling the experience itself. This is called “revivification” They can go back into trance anytime that is right for them. Anytime they want to go back into trance. In fact the more they practice this, the better they will become at it. Easy peasey, just remember how a lovely trance can feel and you are there. You can associate/relate a phrase or image, or word to hold in your mind to facilitate a trance session. Simply create something that feels right to your client (I typically ask the client for a meaningful phrase, image, or word to remind them of trance and use that. What I use for myself is “Just breathe” It helps me to sort of reset/reboot and remember I can be serene and have clarity if I am in a stressful situation and feeling scattered and distressed. I know it worked and my subconscious responds with an powerful urge to sigh in response. My own subconscious came up with that very spontaneously. A sort of “I am here and I am listening” trigger and response between the conscious and subconscious parts of my mind. I didn’t consciously choose that-it just naturally happens in me.

To begin, I settle down, center myself and begin to go into trance myself. In effect-I go there first so that I can guide my client in with me.


They are really doing the work. Which is the way it should be. I just sit back and listen deeply to them as they tell me their story. My subconscious tells them stories directly to their subconscious and off into tranceland we dance with words and images, memories, and possibilities. Sometimes that listening is all that was really needed. Maybe they feel no one listens, really listens to them, and here is their chance to be heard! Perhaps at home, they are not listened to in the way they need anywhere else in their life. Here is their chance to be really heard for who they are in the way they need. Someone who could really listen to them where they are. It can be hard,  especially in the beginning before you have gained enough experience to see the pitfalls before you have faceplanted into them with a mouthful of dust. In our culture, there are so many examples of the oracle on high pronouncing the ”one true way” as he or she sees it and so seductive is the vision of grateful clients singing your praises and lavishing adoration upon you that it is very hard to let them learn how they can and must really for real positive change.  Give them space. And people will pay you for this! They will walk into your space, ask you to wave your starry wand and BOOM! Smoking ceases, BOOM! Snakes and spiders hold no power! BOOM! Public speaking flows like a fountain of sweet wine! How is that not some kind of magic! You are a wizard, Harry! Here is your invitation to Hogwarts!



It is well understandable. It can be heady stuff.  Likewise, it can be a bit shocking to have someone appear before you whether in person or online, fix their hopeful gaze upon you and say “Please, Fix my life!”  Oh dear,Mother of Earth! Fix your life?!?! But I just learned how to breathe a month ago or last weekend! As I grasp desperately at the steps of annapana from class to slow my racing lungs and heart.  Find center. Just breathe and listen. Listen inside and out.  Listen for the sound of my teacher’s serene and playful voice that becomes my own in a moment of clarity. Drawing upon the words of my client weaving a gentle spell to help my client find their answer within. It is there. It always was there.  Here, take my hand, lets go for a walk in trance and see what is there.  As we walk along the landscape it morphs and changes. The fog and noise rolls back, dissipates revealing all manner of things related to the client’s issues and beliefs. We come upon a garden statue and I ask the client to describe it in as much detail as needed for the issue at hand. To ask the statue if it has a message for the client. I listen as the client listens. Like in a dream, everything  in this trance is an aspect of the client and can be part of the solution they consciously seek. Every blade of grass holds information really. A million shades of green. We continue and talk about how whenever they wish and can safely, they can return to this tranceland and walk around it for what they may need and want. It belongs to them. All they must do to return is to get comfortable, hold that thought in their mind as the destination-their tranceland-and they can return. Revivification of trance is what it is called. We walk back into full waking consciousness with everything they need to bring with them, leaving behind everything they don’t really need in some safe place, perhaps next to a garden statue or anywhere really that feels right to them. Like a shore bird chasing ocean waves back and forth along a beach we practice 2-3 times going back into and out of trance a few times, each time easier and joyful to know they can do it. A new skill: self-hypnosis that they can use at will freely for what they wish.

I love the look on a clients face that just shines with their newfound ability and discovery as they come out of trance 😊 They really can do magic and science combined. And they didn’t know they really could-all along! Now, your client can do it and likewise, so can you!

That IS magic!

That IS the very real magic that we can do as Counseling Hypnotherapists

Regulating Colleges (Counselling) in BC, Canada

On August 23rd, 2020 the BC Government announced that it would be overhauling the 20 Colleges under the Health Protections Act. The intent is to reduce the 20 current Colleges to 6. This move is based on the recommendations of the Cayton report.  Learn More about the Cayton Report and the restructuring.

What does this mean for Counsellors in BC?

It’s hard to say. There is no mention of Counsellors in the document. We assume that part will become clearer probably around May 2020, when the process begins. Below is FACTBC’s commentary on these recent events which will hopefully give the reader some insights at what FACTBC’s focus has been and will be in the coming months (Sheldon Bilsker, President, IACH)

Commentary by Glen Grigg, Ph.D., FACTBC Chair)

This is just a short note to fill you in on the follow-up and response FACTBC has provided to Health Minister Adrian Dix’s Thursday announcement that, supported by Green house leader Fursteneau and Liberal health critic Letnick, the government’s intention is to proceed with the modernization plan for BC’s health care regulation.

The stated intention is that the government, supported by cabinet and all parties in the legislature, will put the six new multi-title colleges and the oversight body in place by an amendment to the existing HPA in Spring 2021.

This is just a short note to fill you in on the follow-up and response FACTBC has provided to Health Minister Adrian Dix’s Thursday announcement that, supported by Green house leader Fursteneau and Liberal health critic Letnick, the government’s intention is to proceed with the modernization plan for BC’s health care regulation.

The stated intention is that the government, supported by cabinet and all parties in the legislature, will put the six new multi-title colleges and the oversight body in place by amendment to the existing HPA in Spring 2021. There is nothing in this announcement to change our plan to put a formal application designation before the Minister of Health in late September.

FACTBC has been clear that we support the modernization process, and at the same time, the government has come short of a formal, binding commitment, procedurally embedded in the requirements of the legislation, that Counselling Therapy be regulated.

Once this formal written commitment is in place, then we no longer need to, one more time,  make the case for Counselling Therapy. The Application for Designation becomes the facts agreed to by all parties, independent of who forms government, who the official is, or who happens to be the minister of health.

The practical business of the regulation of counselling therapy in BC can proceed once this step is accomplished. In short, we are respectfully, and very assertively, asking government to acknowledge that we have “done our homework” and to provide the commitment required under the HPA.

The public-interest goal at the centre of our work and commitment is protection of the title “Counselling Therapist” under the HPA. This is the step that provides the safety and accountability that should be the right of every British Columbian seeking professional care.

Many of our association members, familiar with the historical idea that regulation requires a stand-alone college for each professional title, may need some clarification about the progress that has been made in effective professional regulation.

Our members need to know that no profession in BC, including doctors and nurses, will have a “one-profession, one-college” regulatory system. Six large colleges will regulate all of the more than twenty-eight protected titles in BC.

Within those colleges councils specific to each professional title will take responsibility for issues like standards of practice and fitness to practice.

In this new system, the voice of the counselling therapy profession will be re-positioned bu not lost. I encourage you to communicate with your membership about the meaning of a modern regulatory system for Counselling Therapy. Timely clarification is, as we know, helpful in avoiding unnecessary confusion and distress.

We have already reached out to government officials and the media to let them know that while we support the general direction of modernization, this announcement comes short of the formal commitment to Counselling Therapy we have been seeking and that we will be supporting the government to correct this oversight with a written submission in the near future. Hope this note provides some clarity, context, and direction.


You Can Be: A Celebration of Teaching, Learning, and Healing.

There is a lovely poem shared in the book “The Art of Therapeutic  Communication. The Collected works of Kay F. Thompson” that expresses beautifully what therapy and teaching can mean.

It was initially shared among Milton Erickson’s students. I can’t think of a better tribute to what therapy can mean than this exquisite prose. The very heart of what Milton Erickson meant to his students and how he changed their lives through what he taught them and how he taught them. Through his presence in their lives on so many levels he evoked change in them. Forever.

This poem, by Roy Croft, (cited in Lofts, 1970) embraces excellence in hypnotherapy and most importantly the idea so strongly infused in Milton Erickson’s work and life philosophy that “We can be.”

I revisit this poem ever so often when I need to be reminded of the beauty and need of what we do as hypnotherapists and human beings. When I need to see through fresh eyes at times when I am feeling overwhelmed and befuddled by life stuff. It continually inspires me to what is possible. Possibilities. In all of us.


I love you, not only for what you are,

But for what I am when I am with you.


I love you, not only for what you have made of yourself,

But for what you are making of me.


I love you for the part of me you bring out.

I love you for putting your hand into my heaped up heart,


And passing over all the foolish, weak things you can’t help

dimly seeing there,


And for bringing out into the light all the beautiful belongings

that no one else had ever looked quite far enough to find.


I love you because you are helping me to make,

Of the lumber of my life, not a tavern, but a temple,


And of the words of my everyday,

Not a reproach, but a song.


I love you because you have done more than any creed could

have done to make me good,

And more than any fate could have done to make me happy.


You have done it,

Without word,

Without a touch,

Without a sign.


You have done it by being yourself.

Perhaps that is what being a friend means, after all.



Teaching and learning and growing. It is not about dry bloodless pedagogy and fancy clever techniques, it is about the relationship between people.  How we touch the mind and heart in making that connection in our work that is fundamental in healing. In hearing and deeply listening to another individual. With people, who are unique individuals.  True for the therapeutic space and the blackboard space. With love and respect for the individuals involved.  In service to well being and growth.

I remember coming across the description of working with each new client as an experience of traveling to a unique new land that always entailes learning a completely new language. Every time. Just last week I was struck by how much I enjoyed learning about people, and their lives, experiences.

Truly it was for me the joy of the immersion into another human being’s story. The immersion in the language of their mind-conscious and subconscious born of their experiences, personality and imagination. A thrilling adventure. This reminds me so much of Star Trek. Not just learning a set of skills but also learning to be more fully human. Discovering that I can be, we can be.  What a precious gift to be able to be there and part of our client’s discovery that they can be.