Black, White, or Shades of Grey?

With solution focused hypnotherapy, we regularly see clients with high states of emotional arousal.

We can quickly treat these conditions, such as anxiety, using a combination of therapeutic techniques including hypnotic trance. First we help our clients regain control. Secondly, we get them to operate from what we call the more positive and intellectual side of the brain. This naturally allows for behaviour of a more positive nature, and thus begins the journey of recovery. In essence we help create less of a black or white outlook and more of a shades of grey scene.

Quite significant consequences have come about from our emotions operating in black or white thinking. In particular within our human evolution and history.

black and white thinking depression

The two extremes.

As emotions rise, the original primitive part of the brain ‘hijacks’ the higher, more recently evolved intellectual brain. This very quickly begins to blank out the more subtle distinctions in life.  For example, in a life or death situation, the ability to make fine discriminations must be shut off, so that we can act quickly to take the decisive action needed to save ourselves.  A black or white, right or wrong, all-or-nothing result arises once there is a significant issue of emotional arousal.  Everything thereafter operates out of these two extremes.

Thankfully, the intellectual brain partly evolved as a means to discriminate the shades that exist between black or white.  Quite simply, it was nature’s solution to our need for adaptable responses to the ever-changing environment.  This of course can only happen if the original primitive part of the brain isn’t too highly aroused.   Interestingly you’ll find it near impossible to communicate with someone who is too highly aroused, they cannot have anything other than a black or white opinion, and unable to see another viewpoint.

Black or white thinking.

If the black or white thinking continues it will eventually generate more emotion by repeatedly turning on the fight or flight response that makes us angry (fight) or anxious (flight).  That individual will then find the intellectual part of their brain unable to use its ability to take a wider perspective on life.  They will be unable to see the infinite shades of grey, and find that they catastrophize the ‘bad’ things that happen by magnifying them.

So, are you a black or white thinker, or do you see the signs that there are shades of grey between? Book online today

Find Love this Valentine’s Day

February is here and with it Saint Valentines Day.

Embracing a time of year that is historically associated with love and fertility. It encompasses the sacred marriage of Zeus and Hera in Ancient Athens. And also the Ancient Roman festival of Lupercus, the god of fertility.  You may be spending it with your loved one or dreaming of a loved one you’ve not met yet. Maybe you’re simply dreading this time of the year where everyone else seems to be so “in love”.

Now, there are several things that we need in order to develop a healthy emotional life. One of which is that we must have the ability to love and receive love.  To care and be cared for by at least one other person is key.  That’s not to say everyone has to find a ‘significant other’. Or even that fulfilment can only be achieved with that one person.  No it’s simply the experience of being cared for or loved that has a beneficial effect on our self-development or sense of worth.

Effects on our health

Our resilience increases when we are loved.  Take for example loneliness, it can be as dangerous as high blood pressure, obesity, smoking or a lack of exercise.  When we take it down to the fine detail of the cells of chronically lonely people, they are less sensitive to signalling from the stress system as a result of the stress hormone cortisol.  This is where immune responses then become inadequate.  And when people become chronically lonely they are far more likely to become depressed.

Networks & Community

But if people have a strong network of family, friends or community they are happier and emotionally and physically healthier people than those who feel isolated or unable to make connections with others. Interestingly elderly people who rely on two or more people in their lives for support have been found to survive longer after a heart attack than others without that support.  Increasingly common is the situation where people flounder when they live apart.  Following their job or wherever their careers take them, may cause them to be far away from any established social support networks they previously held.  And so they lose contact with the very people who care for them through the unpredictable heartbreaks and uncertainties of life.

So…what are you waiting for?  Yes it may well be February and valentines day looming but just reach out. Reach out to those who matter too – those friends and relatives.  If we all reached out and made contact with those we have lost contact with, the world would be that little bit happier and feel less isolated.