Seminar aims to tout benefits of hypnosis

By: Terry Oparka | Troy Times | Published January 18, 2012


If hypnosis only brings to mind entertainers bidding someone on a stage to quack like a duck or bark like a dog, local experts urge you to think again.

Mary Vallei, vice president of the nonprofit Michigan Association of Counselors and Hypnotherapists, said hypnosis is about people accessing their own ability to heal and improve the quality of their lives. Hypnosis, she said, teaches people how to stop negative conversations within the mind and turn toward positive energy.

The association will host World Hypnosis Day, which is free and open to the public, to raise awareness of and provide information on holistic and alternative approaches to wellness that focus on the mind-body connection, along with spotlighting therapies and providers in metro Detroit.

Featured speakers include Dr. Robert Levine, director of the Integrative Medicine Center at Henry Ford Health System; Denise Jacob, RN, Ph.D.; and Dr. Mujtaba Zahoor, naturopath and director of the Holistic Wellness Institute.

Vallei, is an internationally certified counseling hypnotherapist and registered psychotherapist and owns the Hypnotherapy Center for Positive Change in Troy.

Hypnosis can be effective in treating pain and anxiety; helping people quit smoking, and to focus and perform better on exams and in sports; and bolstering self-esteem and self-confidence, to name a few things, Vallei said.

“Hypnosis doesn’t cure you, but gets you involved in the natural ability of the body and mind to heal yourself and get yourself out of your way,” she said. She noted that the American Dental Association includes hypnosis as part of required training.
However, as with other alternative therapies, health insurance usually doesn’t cover hypnosis, which can range from $75 to $200 per session, though some flexible spending health care plans do, Vallei said.

“Hypnosis can help with any issue that affects your body or life. Hypnosis is 100 percent controllable by you,” she said.

“People think they won’t be awake,” said Ruth Reaser, registered hypnotherapist and owner of Life Renewals in Sterling Height. “You can’t make somebody do something that they wouldn’t ordinarily do. If it conflicts with values, the mind will not accept it.”

Reaser completed training to be a hypnotherapist after she lost a corporate job as a product manager. She successfully lost weight and dealt with stress after receiving hypnotherapy. “I had profound results,” she said. “I knew I was meant to do something to help people.”

When choosing a hypnotherapist, Reaser said people should look for someone they can relate to and trust.

Reaser said World Hypnosis Day is a free-flowing event in which participants are free to listen to all or part of a speaker’s presentation and move around at will. Free gift bags and tote bags will be available.

World Hypnosis Day will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Jan. 21 at the Authentic Living Center, 1640 Axtell, off of Maple, in Troy. For information, call Vallei at (248) 822-9253.