There are 3 major ways that hypnotherapy can be beneficial for those about to participate in an exam. The first benefit comes from being in a hypnotic state where the mind is more open and ready to receive suggestions that can later be automatically acted upon. This means that for those who learn self hypnosis, they can use their sessions to not only boost their confidence levels by making positive suggestions for success and easily accessing information during exams, but can actually use their trance state to absorb the information they need to remember. This could be done by scanning information which is written sown whilst in a trance like state, or it could be done by recording information about about the topic and playing this back whilst in a hypnotic trance.

The second useful component during exams is to be relaxed and open minded and hypnosis can certainly help us to achieve this. We know that our mind work better and access information more easily when they are relaxed, and function less effectively and make poor judgments when under a great deal of pressure. When our mind is relaxed, everything about our bodies works differently also. Even our eyes work differently. In a relaxed state, our eyes are in peripheral vision, which is when our vision is open and we are able to see into the periphery, taking in and paying attention to much more information around us. Information flows in and out of our bodies easily in this state and at a deeper level, peripheral vision is used for some types of meditation. When we are in a stressed state however, our vision goes into foveal vision, which is when our focus becomes very tunneled. This could be likened to the stress state we experience when we are driving and are late or have lost our way. As soon as the panic sets in, tension increases in the body and the vision becomes foveal, meaning that we could miss the clues to our route because they are outside of our tunnelled vision. During exams, it is important to remain in the relaxed peripheral vision, with the mind open and an ability to take in all of the information before us, instead of panicking and misreading questions.

The third important way that hypnosis can help us during exams is to keep us positive and motivated about the task we are undertaking. Many people suffer with negativity either as part of their own personality or from others around them. If we are constantly convincing ourselves that something is difficult, then our mind will begin to highlight and focus on the many difficulties that there are. Now some people like to make life much more difficult than it really needs to be, but I am not one of those people. When we are generally positive and motivated we seem to have a much easier time in life. When you tell yourself you can do something, you want to do so with conviction, and not in the back of your head call yourself a lire! Hypnosis can help you to believe in yourself more and really feel as if your goals are achievable.

By Gemma Bailey