Updated: May 12, 2020
Online therapy is easy when it comes to hypnotherapy and CBT skills. You will find you are very naturally and easily supported just as you would be in person. Hypnotherapy or rather hypnosis is often delivered virtually in the form of downloads, I didn't initially agree with this type of providing hypnosis because I thought having a therapist at your side is quite important. However, I have come to realise that actually online therapy opens up tiers of help for people that can make therapy more affordable and accessible to people who require different levels of support to the standard once a week fifty-minute sessions.
Many people could in fact need much less direction from a therapist and they will be able to teach themselves with a book or minimal support, these people tend to be very self-directed and they are looking more for accountability. Some people will need an initial intense one-off session in say stopping smoking and this can be delivered very easily via zoom with later support through the telephone. In a pinch a download if bespoke can be quite useful, particularly if you also had a consultation first with a therapist. There are many combinations of online therapy that can be effective. There is no reason that the type of therapy I offer cannot be given to you online. I teach skills, I teach you how to do hypnosis as a skill which you have for life and I teach you coping skills, my approach is more like a teacher and therefore very adaptable to working online.
I believe that people worry that the quality of the therapeutic relationship will suffer online, particularly people new to therapy may worry that they will not be able to get enough emotional support from a therapist and again my experience is that mainly this is incorrect. My former career was as an actress and I trained for two years in listening skills which means I am actually highly attuned to the needs of my client even when I cant see all of them and I have found no difficulties in offering empathy online. My online help may be delivered at a slower pace if you are very nervous so we can take the time needed for you to build trust up with me before we work on your skills too.
I am very flexible with how I am willing to deliver therapy and as long as you are committed and motivated there is no reason you cannot support yourself, after all in the end my job as a therapist is to show you skills that in the end help you to help yourself. So, I can support you minimally via email and prescribe you resources that you need for a low cost fee of £15 or you can get a bespoke virtual consultation, hypnotherapy resources and downloads from £30 depending on your need. Get in touch and find out how I can adapt to your need and budget.
You can also have a look at these free virtual resources below, I have stuck to applications for now because I have many resources I can recommend online. Both CBT and Hypnotherapy are based on the idea of learning and repeating skills and visualisations that over time rebuild your reactions in the world and train your nervous system to be calm. Most anxiety and stress is caused by a few things a lack of resources (skills or actual resources), overestimation of threat and a lack of self belief in your ability to cope and much of this can be changed with virtual or online skills training. Learning the skills below will help you learn new more beneficial ways of coping with the problems in your life, they work best for people who have already had some therapy but they can work on their own as well as a short term intervention. People who wish to move faster in their learning journey will do well to have a professional coach at their side, evidence suggests this is the best way but these apps and websites are great short term resources.
The key for all of these resources is the same as if you were in regular therapy, be consistent, believe in your ability to succeed and give the therapy time work. Remember how long it takes to ride a bike, why would you think that learning therapy skills and changing habits is any different?
Woebot is a CBT AI app for your phone that was built by therapists. It is an excellent app to use if you have already had some CBT and you want to practice your skills. You can check in with Woebot if you are experiencing things like anxiety and determine with Woebot whether the anxiety is situation-appropriate or whether you need to move on to further exercises. Woebot is an excellent tool when beginning CBT to see how the skills are applied in real life and as every good therapist and successful client knows real therapy happens when the skills are transferred out of the therapy room.
Stop, Breathe and Think
I enjoyed Stop, Breathe and Think because of its simplicity. It includes a daily check-in and this includes ten seconds to pause, check in with yourself emotionally and physically. Then the app has you select some feeling words that represent how you feel and it will then go onto suggest many of the activities I would recommend such as progressive muscle relaxation. It will be particularly useful for people who are emotionally inhibited or those that cannot regulate their emotions healthily because it encourages you to check in with yourself, recognise and label emotions which is key to being able to manage them. They also have a very comprehensive videos section on youtube with lots of bite-sized mindfulness and yoga videos.
Sanvello is another application that supports people to improve their life by making behaviour changes. The key to change in therapy is changed behaviour and sometimes this rather than addressing thoughts is particularly useful for anxiety and depression. Sanvello is a behavioural intervention that encourages people to keep on top of their mood by through lifestyle changes. You have daily wellbeing goals that you track such as exercise, water intake, things that bring pleasure like pets, daily mood rating and several categories of guided relaxation and stress management to complete. It is one of my favourite apps, it is well designed and presented.
Smiling Mind App
Is a free alternative to Headspace, but sorry there are no sleep stories (Headspace is another favourite of mine because of the stories and soundscapes). It is an app dedicated to mindfulness that will track your progress.
AIMS Anger Management App
This was developed for Us veterans that struggling with anger management and it can used by people who have anger management problems. It is a basic app but effective, it encourages you to pause, rate your anger, do an activity to relax, rerate the anger and then explore how the anger came about. Its best feature is helping someone to consider how their thoughts, feelings, emotions and sensations are effected and this awareness can help people to first become aware they are angry and then change their response. I think it works well as a tool that can encourage people to interrupt the anger and explosion cycle.
Another excellent tool that is based on CBT that works best alongside working with a therapist but it can be used alone too. It has a particularly good update for dealing with uncertainty which will be very good for coronavirus anxiety and the uncertainty that comes from losing jobs or a particular way of life. Its key feature that I think is really good is encouraging people to focus on past worries they have had and see whether they came true and how well they have managed to cope the past. Our mind can be very biased in favour of negatives and it can be easy to forget how truly resilient we actually are. There is also a lovely feature to share your worries with your therapist. I think this is a very comprehensive app that encourages a healthy response to worries. It is on my top list of apps to recommend.
I like to test all the applications I recommend and these are ones I have already used and enjoyed. I will be reviewing more applications that will be useful for you but in the meantime please feel free to have a look at the NHS list of recommended health apps here.
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If you need online therapy don't forget this is available via zoom, skype, facetime or Whatsapp. I am running late night hours, online evening therapy and emergency skills for coping with Coronavirus anxiety, insomnia and stress and I am offering sessions for stopping smoking using hypnotherapy. You can book in by calling 07515393918. Hypnotherapy and ordinary skills training is available Monday-Friday.