When I moved from Leicester, a big city to a rural area with a low population size five years ago, I thought I’d have to give up my busy hypnotherapy and counselling practice so I didn’t really know what to do when my old clients started calling to ask for maintenance sessions or to refer their friends to me. I had a really good chat with my old tutor and mentor, Tom Barber about the practicalities of working over the internet, using Skype and FaceTime and since then, I haven’t looked back.  Here’s some common questions I get asked from prospective ‘online’ clients

Do I need any special equipment?

A device fitted with a camera, microphone and a decent internet connection is all the hardware that you need. Some clients use their laptop or tablet. Others use their mobile phones. You will also need either a Skype account which you use for free by downloading the Skype app from the website https://www.skype.com or a FaceTime account if you have an Apple device such as an iPhone or iPad or have downloaded the FaceTime for android app.

Is it safe?

Yes. I am fully trained and qualified as both a counsellor and a hypnotherapist and I work online in exactly the same way that I work in a face to face environment. Remember, during hypnotherapy, you are still aware of your surroundings and can choose to become fully awake if you want to.

Is it effective?

Yes. The process for online counselling or online hypnotherapy is exactly the same as for face to face therapy. In some respects, it can be more comfortable and reassuring for you to be in a familiar space rather than a therapy room.  I’m trained in an integrative style of therapy which means my work is very much tailored to the individual. Unfortunately, a therapist who is trained in only one style of therapy can end up working with the problem rather than the person which can feel very uncomfortable and frustrating for the client. I avoid that by being able to blend different therapy styles to work with each person individually.  Some people prefer just counselling or psychotherapy where others want to experience hypnosis. It’s entirely up to you whether you choose to have hypnotherapy or just counselling.  I have been working as a therapist for nine years and have seen hundreds of clients over the years. I am non-judgemental and really have heard pretty much everything so nothing shocks or surprises me. I will be there for you, what ever your own story is.

Is it private?

My client’s privacy is a number one priority for me. To ensure this, I wear a headset and the session takes place in my private office. No-one else has access to your contact details or access to my Skype or FaceTime accounts. It’s up to you who you choose to tell about your sessions. Unless you are under eighteen, no-one else needs to know (I do work with children and young people but I will need the consent of a parent or guardian) but if you want someone in the room with you during your session, that’s also ok.

Where should I be during the session?

It doesn’t really matter so long as you are comfortable, safe and unlikely to be disturbed. Some clients use a room in their house, others will call from an office at work. I even have clients who have their sessions whilst sitting in their car. The beauty of online counselling and hypnosis is that you can choose your own environment to suit yourself. This is particularly helpful for people who are short on time, travel a lot, have mobility issues or suffer from social phobia or agoraphobia. It’s also helpful for my clients who are famous or in the public eye and don’t want to be recognised or seen going to a therapist’s office.

How long is a session?

Usually, each session lasts an hour. If you are booking a hypnosis session for stopping smoking, this will take two hours.

How many sessions will I need?

That really depends on you. I aim to create change in every session and to get you feeling better as quickly as possible but every person and their situation is different. I usually provide smoking cessation hypnosis within just one session of two hours but some deeper life issues can take a little longer to shift. Life is a never ending journey so I see clients for as many sessions as they feel is necessary. Some clients will call months or even years after their first sessions to manage a challenge that has just cropped up in their lives.

Do you work with international clients?

Yes, I do have international clients but I cannot provide counselling or hypnotherapy to people from the USA or Canada due to local laws.  I can however provide life coaching and tailored meditation recordings for people living in these areas.

Why do you cost less than other therapists who offer the same level of service?

Because I work online, I have less overheads, for example, travel costs and the rent on an office space. I also don’t have to spend time travelling to my place of work.  This means I can still offer an excellent service without charging premium rates.

What happens if I book a session?

It’s just the same as booking a face to face therapy session really. Once you’ve called or emailed and we’ve had a chat, we can decide on a day and time that suits you. I can work between 8am and 9pm UK time and seven days a week because I have no travel time. I’ll send you a basic form to fill in with your contact details and to explain how I work. At the agreed time, I will contact you over Skype or FaceTime to start the session. At the end of the session we will agree the date and time of any follow up session.

How do I pay you?

I accept BACS payments or I can send a Paypal Invoice to your email address which allows you to pay with debit card, credit card and through a Paypal account if you have one.

How can I contact you?

You can contact me through my website at http://www.hopeleveltherapy.com/contact-us/ or by calling me on 07809 762926. If you get the voicemail, I may be with a client so please leave your name, contact number and a suitable time for me to call you back.

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