In my opinion, doctors do not necessarily make the best hypnotherapists. Their credentials or reputation as physicians have nothing to do with their rating as hypnotherapists. For those who are successful at hypnotherapy, it really has little to do with their position as a doctor.
Like any other profession, as experts, we specialize, and we cultivate and develop our expertise in a given area. The same is true of doctors and other professionals in whatever specialty, be it psychology, family medicine, or any other practice.
There is certainly the potential for crossover, and medical practitioners have traditionally used hypnosis as part of their treatment, but only to varying degrees of success. Typically, as a professional or specialist in any given area, you will achieve more success in your area of specialty.
If I had started out as a medical physician, a PhD, I doubt that I would have the same success at hypnotherapy as I do have, and have had for so many years, as it wouldn’t be my main or primary area of practice. I’ve nurtured and cultivated my talent, and grown as a hypnotherapist, and I’ve learned from doing. I’ve seen what works and what doesn’t work. I’ve tried different approaches, I’ve witnessed different results. And I’ve devoted my entire career to it as a specialty. It’s not just something I do in my spare time. It’s part of my life.
Most medical doctors start out with an excellent knowledge of the physical human body. Of this there is no doubt. They also have unlimited knowledge and resources at their disposal. The study is limitless and ongoing. However, much of the methodology is theory based. The real difference is that hypnotherapy is about doing, not theorizing.
I have seen doctors apply hypnotherapy as part of their practice and with great success. Their excellent knowledge of people and their conditions served as an advantage in applying hypnotherapy successfully. Although for most their primary area is not hypnotherapy, even though they venture over from time to time, they won’t really cultivate that skill as a specialty.
I know of some hypnotherapists who have obtained doctorates, and without the years of study which it should take to be able to call yourself a doctor. I don’t know why they feel the need to buy this title. Perhaps it is just an ego thing. Although I’m sure it also helps them get more clients as the general public has a high level of trust for doctors.
Don’t get me wrong. We’d be in a lot of trouble without doctors. They do wonderful work. However in hypnotherapy a PhD is irrelevant. I don’t believe being a doctor would make me a better hypnotherapist. In fact I know it wouldn’t. I’m not putting down the study of modern medicine and the qualifications of medical practitioners; I’m saying that it won’t necessarily make you a successful hypnotherapist. Hypnosis is all about the doing!
Barrie St John is a leading figure in the field of hypnotherapy and personal change. He is the author behind the best selling self hypnosis CDs and downloads at www.HypnoShop.com.