Hypnotherapy is becoming more widely known about and accepted every year. Is is in part due to the coverage of celebrities like Matt Damon using it to help him quit smoking and Lily Allen to lose weight. The growth in popularity is also due to the fact that for a lot of people hypnotherapy works.

Before you consider getting hypnotherapy though there are 10 things you should at least be aware of before you sign up to see a particular hypnotherapist.

1. Hypnotherapy Is An Unregulated Industry
Anyone can legally set up as a hypnotherapist with no training, qualifications or insurance. Voluntary self regulation has recently been introduced but it looks like it will do very little to reduce the small number of bad practitioners that are out there so you need this guide to help you find the right hypnotherapist for your needs.

2. Get A Recommendation
As hypnotherapy gets more popular it obviously means more and more people are experiencing what hypnosis is and hopefully seeing some positive results. If you ask around your friends and family there is a very good chance you know someone who has had hypnotherapy. If they had a good experience there is a good chance you will also if you see that therapist.
If you don't know anyone why not look on a local web forum for your city and ask the members if they have any recommendations.

3. Are They A Member Of A Professional Body?
Good hypnotherapists tend to be members of professional governing bodies. Membership of these groups is dependent of having a minimum level of qualification and an agreement to abide by their code of conduct and ethics.
This means that you can be confident your therapist is qualified and should you need to complain to a higher power if there is a problem then the professional body will be only too happy to assist you in resolving the problem.

4. Don't Trust Google!
Search results show the most relevant information for the search term. If you search for “hypnotherapy Sheffield” you will not get the best hypnotherapist in Sheffield in the top result, only the most relevant result.
This means you have to shop around to find the best hypnotherapist for you. Open all the results on the first page of your search and examine all the websites. Find three or four you like the look of and then call them up for a chat. A good hypnotherapist will be more than happy to have a short chat on the phone to help you decide if you would like to work together.

5. Trust Your Instincts
Instincts are very often right but we don't always listen to our instincts for whatever reason. When looking for a hypnotherapist be sure to listen to your gut feeling. If the website looks cheap and tacky or if it is mis-sized and has incorrect spellings then disregard it.
People who do not invest in a professional looking and properly written website are unlikely to invest in the people they are providing hypnotherapy to.

6. Check Qualifications
Hypnotherapists often have a string of letters after their name signifying their qualifications but how can you tell what these abbreviations mean? Ask them!
A good hypnotherapist will be proud of their qualifications and will gladly tell you what each abbreviation means and how the gained their qualification.
Ensure the qualification is relevant to hypnotherapy as well. Some hypnotherapists will list their “Bsc” in chemistry but this is completely irrelevant to hypnotherapy. These types of people are trying to appear more knowledgeable than they actually are and may be best avoided.

7. Are They Insured?
You would expect people driving on the roads to be insured and so you should expect your hypnotherapist to also be insured. It is common for hypnotherapists to have public liability insurance and professional indemnity insurance. Ask your hypnotherapist who they are insured with and ask to see their certificate of insurance. A good hypnotherapist will be more than happy to prove to you that they have invested in you and your health. Don't let a bad hypnotherapist try to convince you that insurance isn't necessary. What if you trip in their waiting room, break your leg and are off work for 3 months? They need to be insured for this kind of circumstance.

8. Do They Have Any Reviews Or Testimonials?
Many hypnotherapists recognise the value of having reviews for their business and will feature these comments on their website.
There are also many third party websites which list reviews for local businesses. A quick search should bring up these. However, bear in mind that sometimes it is easy to fabricate positive reviews, especially if you own the website the comments are on. It is against the Advertising Standards rules to make up reviews but it doesn't stop some. When in doubt go back to tip number 5 and trust your instincts.

9. Do They Make You Feel Relaxed?
For hypnotherapy to have the very best chance of success you should work with someone who makes you feel confident in their abilities and relaxed in their presence. Going to the first meeting with a hypnotherapist can be a little daunting for some people, this is perfectly natural.
However this feeling should be significantly reduced after the first meeting with the therapist. If it hasn't then you may want to reconsider if they are the right hypnotherapist for you.

10. Ask Lots Of Questions
If you go into hypnosis without having asked all the questions that are on your mind it is possible that these questions will be at the forefront of your mind and stop the session being as effective as it could have been.
Hypnotherapists are used to people asking lots of questions about what it is like being in a trance and how it works. A good hypnotherapist will be only too happy to answer all your questions and put your mind at ease.

Author's Bio: 

My name is Richard and I am a hypnotherapy practitioner based in Sheffield, UK. I wrote this guide as there is very little advice on how to select a good hypnotherapist out of the thousands of hypnotherapy providers who are out there. I hope you have found this guide useful.
If you have any questions or comments please feel free to email me at richard@sheffield-hypnosis.co.uk and you can find my website at www.sheffield-hypnosis.co.uk