But What If?

The word ‘but’ is an interesting one. It’s quite incredible how it can change the course of a life if you apply the word ‘but’.

For instance, if we start a sentence with “I’m thinking of doing something different…” then the brain kicks in with the word ‘but’, we end up not doing something that could turn out to be very rewarding and inspiring.

In the same way, when we ask clients “What’s been good”, they can start relaying a negative experience, but when we raise our eyebrows to highlight the fact they’ve gone off track, they can frequently come up with the word ‘but’ to tell us how the whole story ended up with something good.

Broadening Horizons

Here at Clifton Practice Hypnotherapy Training, we’ve used the word ‘but’ when talking about Covid.  For example, “For sure Coronavirus has negatively affected a huge number of people, but if it hadn’t been for the epidemic then therapists wouldn’t have discovered a whole new audience, who are happy to work online. This has expanded our students’ and graduates’ potential client base. Now they can work with people not just across the whole of the UK but overseas too.  Obviously we’d have been happier if Covid hadn’t materialised in the first place, but sometimes we need to look at the silver linings in order to help us move forward.

Prior to Covid it was rare for talking therapies to be undertaken online.  Clients would have to travel into clinics etc. But then things needed to change and quite quickly they did. Back in April 2020, New Scientist talked about ‘talking therapies having now proven themselves online’!  What a nice result.

Small Words Make a Big Difference

So, be curious as to how such a small word can make a big difference to your life, if you really think about how you use it. For instance, if you’re on this blog, you might like to click on the HPD tab above to discover a whole new potential world for yourself… just keep the ‘but’ word under control as you do so! It can make all the difference between whether you say yes or no to opportunity.😉

If you would like to say ‘yes’ to the opportunity of training with us go straight to the application form here.

A Step into the World of Hypnotherapy Training

CPHT Edinburgh and CPHT Glasgow both run a yearly diploma course in solution focused hypnotherapy.  It was Edinburgh’s turn to kick off their 2021 course recently and one of our lovely lecturers, Anne Wyatt, did a guided tour of the facilities.

Whilst filming the video, Anne was able to capture the students on their first weekend taking part in a trance exercise.  For some this would have been their first opportunity to experience trance.  Others will have had hypnosis before they joined the course.

Just Getting on With It

We don’t hang around in getting hands-on experience of hypnosis.  Straight after the first module, we ask the students to encourage friends and family to help them by listening to the student read out loud the provided language patterns.  This can cause some laughter and hilarity, but it gets the student off to a flying start.

Have a look here at Anne’s video:


Practical and Theoretical

We are a very practical course, which means by the time the students graduate they have a good amount of clinical hours under their belt.  The one weekend a month in the classroom provides them with plenty of theory too.  The two combined means that students graduate feeling confident in their abilities.  There is no substitute for practical work with real-life clients in order to build that confidence.

Meanwhile, in between the course weekends, should the student need help with a client case, we’re on hand to support them in a ‘Supervisor’ status.  The feedback we get at the end of the course is very rewarding. Something we hear a lot is how the students find the support of the lecturers so good.

So, if you’re in Scotland and want a new full-time or part-time career, and want o know about the course content please click here.

If you would like to apply please click here, or just contact us to ask a question please click here.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Variety is the spice of life!

One of the many aspects we really like about our careers as Clinical Hypnotherapists is the variety of issues we can help our clients with. We never quite know what the next new client enquiry will be for, so it keeps our lives interesting! Because of this, we need to teach our students how to deal with all sorts. So, on course weekend one, we teach the basics of how the brain works and what hypnotic trance is all about.
Month two is a fair bit of revision about the workings of the brain, with the addition of how we explain it all to the client. We also introduce the students to the wonders of the Miracle Question – that by itself is a game-changer for many!
By the time we come to the third month’s course weekend, we’re really picking up momentum as the students will move from working with just friends and family to working with the general public. At this point they will have learnt about personality types which helps build the all-important therapeutic rapport. They will also have begun to master the detail of how the brain works through practising their explanation to their friends and family. The students will be working with volunteer case studies at this point and the case notes will be written up on an anonymous basis to form part of a portfolio of evidence required to achieve the Hypnotherapy in Practice Diploma (HPD).
From month four we move on to more detailed areas and, over the remainder of the course, we teach students how to help their clients with:
– Sleep issues
– Obsessive Compulsive Behaviour (OCD)
– Depression
– Fears and phobias
– Smoking cessation
– Pain management
– Weight loss
– Confidence building
– Sports motivation
and more!
We even have former World Champion Middleweight boxer, Glenn Catley, talk to the class about how hypnotherapy helped him achieve his world class status.  And there’s more! In addition to all of the above, we have modules on Marketing, Q&A’s on setting up a practice, and we even train the students to use software which helps monitor clients’ progression, so the client and the therapist can evidence how effective sessions are.
As each course weekend goes by, an essential part is the feedback the students give in the classroom on the variety of sessions they’ve run, the difficulties they may have encountered and, of course, the successes. Everyone learns from this valuable feedback.
Of course, we also give a significant back-up service to the students in between course weekends – we’re always on hand should they get stuck on anything!
Oh yes, we make it fun too! We know the brain learns in a better way if it’s enjoying itself which is why our lecturers like to laugh and smile a lot!
Our next Glasgow course starts in March, so get in touch soon!
Give Anne a ring on 07584 414715. She’s one of our course lecturers so will be able to answer any questions you may have. Alternatively, email us at info@cphtglasgow.co.uk.  You can also apply here if you would like to do so.

A chat with our lecturers

In this blog post we’re having a Zoom chat with the two great Senior Lecturers at CPHT Glasgow.  Anne Wyatt and Alex Brounger run their own busy hypnotherapy practices as well as teaching at both CPHT Edinburgh and Glasgow.

We asked them a few questions about their careers as hypnotherapists:

The importance of repetition

We often get asked by students and clients alike, why we repeat the language patterns that we relay to clients in hypnotic trance?

Well, there are a few reasons why repetition is so important for the brain. Firstly, people learn through repetition. Repetition builds pathways in our brain. If we repeat a positive story (say within hypnosis) then we start creating new positive patterns in our brain. This is extremely useful for someone suffering anxiety or depression, especially when they’ve got into a pattern of thinking negatively!

We constantly repeat the following to our students: “The brain learns by repetition”. It’s a bit like learning to drive or teaching yourself a new language – do you do it once and master it? No, you need to repeat. This allows the brain to learn, so repetition is very good for us when learning new ways of thinking.

Another reason for repetition is a little bit more complex. You have one brain and two minds – the conscious and the subconscious. The subconscious has elements within it that are responsible for your survival (the fight, flight response) and it’s the subconscious that makes us feel anxious if it feels we don’t have control over life. It’s like a warning bell that can go off to alert us to danger. Now, that might be the potential danger of Covid-19 in current times, or it could quite simply be the bank statement arriving.

In order to help clients move forward, we help them understand how their subconscious mind works and explain that the fight/flight/anxious part of the brain loves repetition.  Why does it love repetition? Well, that part of the brain believes that if it repeats today what it did yesterday, then it stands more chance of survival. Makes sense really. But, it sees change as dangerous. If we haven’t done something before then the brain hasn’t got a pattern of behaviour to refer to from yesterday, so it doesn’t know whether a potential change is survivable.

Let me give you an example:

Imagine you’re a caveperson a few hundred thousand years ago, and you’re coming out of your cave with a homemade bucket to go and collect water from a nearby stream. There are two routes you could take; a left-hand pathway or a much longer route via a right-hand pathway. Most days you have quite a lot to do, so you always take the left-hand pathway for efficiency. Because this is a well-trodden pathway, your subconscious mind knows where the dangerous bits are i.e. a bit of ledge you have to walk around that has a big drop or maybe some woods where wild animals might hide? So, your brain will go onto alert as it approaches these known areas. However, it will also know where it can relax, such as that nice pathway where there’s a lovely view and you can see for ages and therefore relax knowing there are no wild animals around. Relaxing saves a lot of brain energy and reduces anxiety!!

But what happens if you come out of your cave one morning and there’s been a rockfall on that left-hand pathway which forces you to go the long way round via the right-hand pathway? Well, your brain doesn’t have a previous repetitive pattern to refer to and it doesn’t know where there could be dangerous bits or safe bits, so it starts to move into alert mode all the way along this pathway not knowing what’s around the next corner. This takes up a lot more energy and can make the brain anxious.

It’s a bit like giving a presentation for a first time or doing something outside our comfort zone – the subconscious starts knocking on the door asking “Are you sure you want to do this”?  Once we have been down the same path a few times, we relax! Hence, when in trance, if we’re going down a pathway we’ve been before, the subconscious mind feels safer and thereby less defensive. We know this allows it to become more accepting of positive suggestion in a trance state.

So yes, repetition is very good for the brain!

Depressed or are you just feeling a bit fed up?

Well, given all that’s been going on in the world, who can blame you?

If you are feeling a bit low, or worse, it’s worth noting that you’re certainly not alone.  Prescriptions for antidepressants in the UK rose by 173% (and the cost rose by 700%) between 1991 and 2001. That’s one heck of a lot of tablets!

When talking about depression, we’re not talking about a low mood for a few days, but an ongoing issue that causes sleep disruption, change in appetite, no enjoyment of life whatsoever, etc, and for a long period of time.  This could, possibly, be depression.

Now there’s no need to get depressed if you think you, or a loved one, has depression!  What if we start considering depression as a natural, and even a healthy response, to an inability to cope with certain life circumstances?  What if the brain is working correctly in sending signals to alert us to the fact that things in life are not good right now? If we’re experiencing challenging times, should we expect a person to be all light and life itself with a big grin on their face?

What if depression might be considered ‘normal’ or ‘natural’ given certain circumstances? It might allow us to get rid of it a bit quicker if we felt it was something we had more control over.  We know there’s a saying ‘It’s 10% the situation and 90% how we deal with it’.  Well, we can certainly take control of a number of things depending upon our mindset.  But how do we change that mindset?

Well, there was a clever chap called Assen Alladin at the University of Calgary Medical School (Canada) who wrote: “Hypnotherapy is a vital part of treatment for depression, based on the individual variance in the experience of this mental health problem and the adaptability of hypnotherapy, above and beyond the pharmaceutical treatments in offering an individualised therapeutic service”.

The Lecturers at CPHT are Clinical Hypnotherapists with busy private practices and have some considerable experience to their names.  They are great advocates for hypnotherapy for depression and anxiety as they’ve seen the results.  They share this knowledge with the students on our courses and explain not only how the brain works when in a depressed mode, but they also teach the students how to help their clients to improve their mindset and thereby their mood by taking positive action.  Of course, they have the added benefit of being able to use the gentle but powerful therapy of hypnosis which helps the whole process along nicely!

It makes the job of a Clinical Solution Focused Hypnotherapist a very rewarding one when you can help people overcome the negativity of depression!

You have your own answers

When you set out on a journey, you never quite know where it might lead!

David Newton, the founder of Clifton Practice Hypnotherapy Training (CPHT) launched his first training school back in 2002.  He had become a very successful hypnotherapist and, back in the late 90’s, had become aware of the ‘scientific revolution’ and in particular the work of Marcus Raichle.

David says:

“Raichle discovered that when we are in a trance state the Brain is working hard to come up with solutions. I was particularly pleased with one of the very first research/neuroscientific programmes that said that the more enjoyable therapy was the more successful it was likely to be.”

David went on to say “There was also confirmation of Blaise Pascal’s assertion that ‘People are generally better persuaded by the reasons which they themselves discovered than by those that have come to the minds of others’.”

These comments set some of the foundations on which our current course is structured:

  • We need to have fun in the therapy room
  • It’s not for us, as therapists, to tell the client what to do – the client has the answers suitable for themselves
  • We need to show the client the path, but it’s up to them to walk it.

Those Light Bulb Moments

A big part of our teaching isn’t about hypnosis, although obviously we cover that.  We also teach students how to Light bulb momentstructure a session and, using psychotherapy, to gently encourage the client down a path that leads them to having light-bulb moments of clarity.  This is done through positive questioning which, in turn, leads to positive decisions and actions.

We apply this same positive attitude to ourselves as lecturers and, having set up Edinburgh some time ago, we were very pleased that the answer we came up with for ourselves was to launch CPHT Glasgow!  Our first course starts in March 2021!

We’re very confident indeed that Glasgow will be as much of a success as Edinburgh because Solution Focused Hypnotherapy has caught on.  From David Newton’s early beginnings, CPHT now has 26 schools scattered across the UK and abroad, so we must be doing something right!


If you want a very rewarding career, then have a look through this website at the course content, the course dates and the fees – just click on the HPD tab at the top of this page.

Alternatively, give Anne a ring on 07584 414715.  She’s one of our course lecturers so will be able to answer any questions you may have.  Or email us at info@cphtglasgow.co.uk.

Our support mechanism during training really is second to none.

One of the many areas of positive feedback that we receive from our students features the high level support that they receive both during and between course weekends. This is crucial for our students to graduate with an exceptionally high level of skill and is something that we take very seriously here at CPHT Scotland. So how do we do it?

  1. We have two Senior Lecturers teaching each course. Alex Brounger and Anne Wyatt are both working therapists and clinical supervisors as well as being senior lecturers, so they live and breathe the practical side of being a therapist day in and day out. This means we can combine a high level of theoretical knowledge with the real life, practical applications into practice. We know the useful tips and the pitfalls when it comes to working with clients, being self-employed and running a therapy business. In short, we get it!
  1. We limit our student numbers on each course. This combined with having two senior lecturers means that we can tailor teaching to the needs of each individual student. There is always time for questions on course weekends and every month we dedicate ring fenced time to hearing how the students have been getting on with clients over the past month, discussing what has gone well and what can be done differently moving forward.
  1. We choose our students carefully so that the comradery and support system between students is strong. Strong doesn’t actually seem a ‘strong’ enough word here – our students really do make friends for life and the support that they show to each other throughout the course and beyond is really something to behold as any of the graduates from our last course in particular will tell you!
  1. Both of our Senior Lecturers are available between course weekends so students can call, text or email us if they have any queries or require any support in between teaching weekends. They are never far from help if and when it is needed.
  1. If any student is finding a part of the training challenging, our first step is always to provide additional support. It is what we as senior lecturers are here for and rumour has it, we do it rather well!

Why not get in touch to find out more about enrolling for our next course.  We look forward to hearing from you!



Does Solution Focused Hypnotherapy Work?

How do I know that Solution Focused Hypnotherapy as taught by the Clifton Practice works?

How can I demonstrate to future clients that it works?

How can I measure outcomes?

The answers to these questions are important to consider before you invest financially and dedicate your time to any hypnotherapy course, particularly as the drive to measure outcomes gathers pace.

More and more reliable evidence is coming out of research studies that clearly supports the effectiveness of Solution Focused Therapy and Hypnosis.  It stands to reason therefore that the Clifton Practice’s combination of both approaches will pack a pretty serious punch.  You will learn a lot about this evidence on course and it will add crucially to your theoretically understanding of why you are doing what you are doing as well as supporting your work with clients.  Not all of it can be neatly packaged up into a quick answer to the ‘does it work’ question however.  So how else will your CPHT training here in Scotland help you with this?

CORP (Clifton Practice Outcome Rating Programme)

Let us introduce you to CORP (Clifton Practice Outcome Rating Programme), a client progression tool that also feeds into plans for future research.  CORP helps clients to see their progress and motivates them to continue to find solutions to achieve their goals.  It also helps to build your confidence as a student and future therapist as you see in graph form the amazing difference you will be making to clients’ lives.  CORP also provides information on the general effectiveness of the Solution Focused Hypnotherapy approach. All of our students are required to use CORP as part of their work with clients during the course and they very quickly grow to love it!

What does CORP measure?

Around Module 6 of the course, we teach our students how to use the CORP software and how to incorporate this naturally into their sessions with clients.  The software requires clients to rate themselves each session across the following seven scales.

1/ How positive have your thoughts been?

2/ How interactive have you been with others?

3/ How would you rate your level of activity?

4/ How would you rate your confidence?

5/ How well are you utilising your strengths and resources?

6/ How much have you achieved?

7/ How would you rate your level of happiness?

The CORP software calculates the score of each scale and the results are then plotted on a graph.

The results and benefits:

The scores from these seven scales are available immediately on a personalised chart specific to the client. The chart is updated with each session which means that both the client and therapist can see real evidence of how things are progressing every session, as can be seen in this example (client identifying details removed):

Students quickly realise the huge benefits of using this software.  As a marketing tool it is invaluable as it allows students and therapists to demonstrate their overall performance in graph which amalgamates the results from all of their clients.  It’s a great way to build confidence and to know that what you are doing works!

So, when Clifton Practice Hypnotherapy Training school students and graduates are asked the ‘does it work’ question, they can hand on heart say ‘yes – and I can prove it!’

CPHT has been providing Hypnotherapy Training in the UK for over 15 years, with 22 satellite schools across the UK and a growing international presence.  Find out more about the course and how you can apply at www.cphtedinburgh.co.uk or call Alex on 07917 415926 for a preliminary chat. We look forward to hearing from you!




What Makes us Different

We do things a bit differently at Clifton Practice Hypnotherapy Training (CPHT)… Actually sometimes we do things a lot differently!


We have fun. Not only in the classroom but also in our clinics. Playfulness is an important part of what we do. And getting good at that takes practice. No wonder there is so much laughter in our hypnotherapy classrooms in Edinburgh and elsewhere in Scotland.

The Brain

We also focus a lot on the brain. “In effect”, says Daniel Siegal (author of the Developing Mind and clinical professor of psychiatry at the UCLA School of Medicine) “we are taking the brain out of its black box and opening it up for discussion in the consulting room.” We give our clients a good understanding of how the brain works and how it can cause us some considerable discomfort. This empowers them to make changes to help themselves. Our  hypnotherapy students find the same thing. They learn how the brain works to help others. In the process they use that knowledge themselves. No wonder so many say that the Hypnotherapy in Practice course we run in Edinburgh is life changing.

The Past is Gone

We do not focus on the past. We can no longer influence it. The neuroscience tells us that focusing on the future helps the brain process the past. We may reflect back on the recent past to identify those things that are going well or that we are pleased about. We might consider the strengths that enabled us to make things in the recent past go well. On the whole we treat the past as a learning experience. It is not surprising therefore that our students find themselves developing forgotten or previously unknown strengths. They surprise themselves with how much they can achieve during the hypnotherapy course.

Focus on Solutions

We also use powerful questions that focus on solutions, not on problems. Again, the neuroscience tells us that what we focus on takes up more neural networks in the brain. If we focus on problems those problems get bigger in the mind. Generally bigger problems are more difficult to deal with than smaller ones. So we are constantly encouraging our clients to focus on solutions. This shift in focus is empowering for our hypnotherapy students too. Our hypnotherapy training is undoubtedly hard work, but with a newly inspired focus on solutions our students generally find themselves being able to achieve far more than they thought possible


And then of course we have hypnosis. That trance state which helps the brain work optimally. It helps us to process difficulties, solve problems, find answers and all the while promoting a feeling of confidence, calmness and clarity. Our students too, find their mind sharpens and their ability to cope under pressure improves. As a result they get very best of themselves during the course.

Do you want to get the very best out of yourself? Do you want to achieve more than you thought possible? Perhaps you want to learn about the brain or simply want a new challenge whilst having fun and meeting great new friends? Apply for our next course here: Application Form and we will be in touch to answer your questions and arrange an interview if you wish.