International Hypnosis Association
Hypnotherapy Course Guide: Understand What The Best Hypnosis Courses Should Offer And How To Find Them
Hypnotherapy courses range from free online courses that give you a certificate for watching a 2 hour video, to hundreds of hours of classroom instruction and supervised clinical practice before you get certified.
So how do you know whether that free online hypnosis course is giving you what you need? With such a wide range of content and quality, begin at the beginning.
Determine what you want and need out of a hypnosis course by starting with what you know.
First, let's break it down by what you already know, your personal interest in hypnosis, and what you want to do with what you learn.
Hypnotherapy Courses For Those Who Are Just Curious
Curiosity about hypnosis and what you might learn in a hypnosis course is a great place to start learning about hypnosis.
This is the stage to consider free or low cost online courses. Look for courses that explain hypnosis AND hypnotherapy (and therefore the difference between a hypnotist and a hypnotherapist), and how you might use hypnosis in your life.
If you're not ready to become a hypnotherapist yet, but you want to know more, there is no need to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on a hypnotherapy course.
Where To Start
Start with looking at some free videos online or a cheap online introduction course through a site like Udemy. Read some online articles. Almost every reputable hypnosis training website will have some introductory material that you can rely on.
Make sure you learn about what hypnosis actually IS (and is not) and the different hypnosis applications and types of hypnotists. This type of course should also address hypnosis terminology such as trance, hypnotic induction, deepening, and so on.
And finally, if you are curious about hypnosis you should learn what being in hypnosis might feel like, and how to go into a trance yourself.
Just Beginning To Learn About Hypnosis
So at the beginning, go from what you know and finally, make sure that you determine if you want to learn more and if so, what direction you want to take.
For instance, hypnosis for entertainment (stage hypnosis) would require a course that includes elements about making hypnosis interesting, working with a group, and engaging an audience.
On the other hand, a hypnosis course to become a hypnotherapist would focus more on working with an individual subject privately. Or maybe you want to learn hypnosis so you can go hypnotize yourself, in which case, self hypnosis is the next step.
Self Hypnosis - Self Improvement
There is a saying in the hypnosis community that "All hypnosis is self hypnosis". Every hypnotist out there, whether on stage or in a therapeutic environment, should have experience with self hypnosis and know what hypnosis feels like.
This lets us empathize with our hypnotic subjects. In fact, a lot of hypnotists experience a trance state while guiding a subject through trance - it's natural!
So learning self hypnosis is a vital element on any hypnotic path, and self hypnosis courses are plentiful, and often free or very low cost.
A self hypnosis course should provide the following:
- A basic understanding of hypnosis, what it is and what to expect
- A discussion of the conscious and unconscious mind
- One or more processes for taking yourself into trance
- A basic understanding of hypnotic suggestions and how to formulate suggestions in a positive, effective way
- Bringing yourself out of trance
Become A Hypnotherapist - Starting a New Career, or Changing Career
If your goal is to become a hypnotherapist, then you will be looking for a comprehensive course that covers everything you need to know. It's important to understand more than the basics. You need a solid foundation to support your new career as a hypnotherapist.
Even the most basic hypnotherapy course should include:
Remember, this is just a very quick and "bare minimum" look at what you should look for in your hypnotherapy course.
Think about what you really want to know in order to be great in this new career.
Imagine yourself as a hypnotherapist...how do you want to feel?
Do you want to leave your course and get your certificate and feel confident that you know what you're doing? If so, then look for more than the basics.
Will You Be Totally Prepared After Taking The Perfect Hypnotherapy Course?
As I write this, I have been a hypnotherapist for over 20 years. I have taught NLP and hypnosis, and been immersed in that world for a long time. And I remember how I felt the day my initial courses were complete.
Despite having taken a very in depth course with plenty of hours and lots of content and practice, I still felt unprepared. So I continued learning, read every book I could find, practiced a LOT … until finally, it was second nature to me.
So I am not suggesting that you will leave even the best of hypnotherapy courses feeling like an experienced pro on your first day. But you SHOULD leave knowing what you need to know, and being able to start helping people from the first session. However, a commitment to continuing to learn and grow as your career develops is important.
Find a course that will help you start strong. Don't settle for an online seminar that lasts a few hours and doesn't leave you well prepared and competent. Be willing to put in the time and investment in yourself, your knowledge, and your skill.
After all, you are approaching a career that can be very fulfilling and lucrative. It's worth your effort!
Add "Certified Hypnotherapist" To Your Existing Medical or Mental Health Career
For those that have an established medical or mental health career, adding hypnosis to your toolbox makes a lot of sense. Hypnosis and understanding hypnotic language can enhance everything from using more effective language with your patients, to having processes that can help enhance the effectiveness of a current treatment.
Imagine being someone who can not only offer standard medical advice, but can help patients change their mindset as well. Is a diabetes patient resistant to changing their lifestyle? A dietician may be able to help them know how to eat differently, but learning how to form suggestions in a positive way - whether through hypnosis or in simple conversation - can help a patient feel better about what they need to do. And if they feel better about it, they are more likely to employ new lifestyle habits that will help with their condition.
In terms of what you need to know in order to be able to add hypnotherapy to your existing career, there are some hypnosis courses out there geared specifically toward medical and mental health professionals. However - any quality hypnotherapy course that meets the criteria mentioned above will give you what you need to apply hypnosis and hypnotic principles to your current career.
How To Find The Best Hypnotherapy Course For You
Knowing what you want to do and how you want to use hypnosis is the first step to knowing how to find a course that is perfect for you. Keep in mind that your perfect match will need to include all of your criteria, such as your budget, location, language, whether you want to take courses online or in person, etc.
Once you have that figured out, and you have researched what your course should include, then the actual search begins.
Hypnotherapy Courses Around The World
IHA Approved Courses
Our website is a great place to start your search. The IHA is an independent 3rd party credentialing organization.
In other words, we do not offer any hypnotherapy courses directly. Instead, we objectively review other courses provided by trainers around the world.
IHA Approved Courses are evaluated by peer review based on accepted industry standards at no cost to the course facilitators.
Trainers can submit their courses for free, and based on their course content and materials, ethical considerations, and how the course facilitators evaluate student competency, .
The IHA uses accepted standards regarding the content of any course we evaluate, and offer accreditation only after they have proven they have met or exceeded these standards.
Therefore, you can start your search by looking at our list of IHA Approved Courses and deciding if any of them meet your personal criteria.
If you don't find a course on our list that meets your needs, then search engines become your next best bet.
You may also wish to consider looking at other organization websites, such as the National Guild of Hypnotists' list of NGH Certified Instructors.
Finding The Perfect Match
Do your research.
When you are considering a path that may lead to using hypnosis to help people meet the challenges in their lives, hypnotherapy is a rewarding and effective way to help people.
Therefore, you want to be prepared.
The bottom line is this: Take the time at the beginning to find a program that fits your needs and ensures you will have the foundation you need to succeed.