Choosing a Therapist – 10 Questions to Ask

LifeSolutions have provided hypnotherapy, stress management, NLP, EFT, Counselling & EMDR in DRONFIELD (including Sheffield, Chesterfield, Rotherham, Barnsley, Derbyshire & surrounding area) and LONDON (working from Harley Street and Marylebone) for over 20 years. Carole Wan, LifeSolution's therapist, is DBS checked (DBS number 001621478232, expiry 94/07/21).  We hope the following information is of help


How long have they been in practice?

If a therapist is a member of a recognised organisation or register, the letters after their name should help (see below). It is a useful question to ask, as a few years experience will ensure that your therapist has plenty of experience with most problems that may present. Newly qualified therapists should refer more complex cases on to a more experienced colleague


Are they recommended by someone you know?

Recommendation is the best form of advertising. If you feel comfortable talking about the problem you wish to deal with, try asking around! It is quite likely that other hypnotherapists, and often Doctors & Dentists, will have heard of a good therapist. Why not ring another hypnotherapist, some miles away from the individual you wish to consult, and ask if they would recommend them?


Do they belong to any professional bodies?

It is not a requirement, but most hypnotherapists belong to either: The National Hypnotherapy Register

The General Hypnotherapy Register


or the Hypnotherapy Association

If you TELEPHONE any of these organisations, they will be able to confirm that a) that individual is a member and b) what level of experience they have.


If so, how long have they been members?

See above! If someone is a member of the Hypnotherapy Association, they must have been in practice at least two years to become an associate member

For members of the General Hypnotherapy Register, the letters SQHP mean that hypnotherapist has been in practice at least 5 years

The National Council for Hypnotherapy awards members as follows:


The letters MNCH (Lic.) i.e. "Licentiate" member, are awarded to practitioners who have fulfilled the NCH entry requirements regarding training and competence but who have not yet had sufficient clinical experience within the field of Hypnotherapy to be awarded Registered status.



The letters MNCH (Reg.) i.e. "Registered" member are awarded as above but to those practitioners who have subsequently had a minimum of 12 months clinical experience within the field.



The letters MNCH (Acc.) i.e. "Accredited" member, are awarded as above but to those practitioners who have had a minimum of 5 years clinical experience


Ask for their CV

Not very likely, we know, but you can find out a lot from someone’s CV! For example, if you had to choose between 2 hypnotherapists, who would you rather go to? Therapist ‘A’ works part time as she has young children. She was previously a health visitor & a nurse & is studying for a counselling qualification. Therapist ‘B’ seems to have loads of qualifications, including a psychology degree. However, his CV reveals that all he has done since graduating is work in a call centre & sell advertising space for the local newspaper!


How much Continual Professional Development have they undertaken?

Although it is a requirement of some hypnotherapy registers, not all therapists keep up to date. You may wish to ask which issues they specialise in and whether they have undertaken further study. If all their CPD’s were taken in the last year or so, they may be fairly inexperienced.


Are they supervised?

We believe this is such an important issue. This is an extract from the practice agreement for members of the National Council for Hypnotherapy. Trainee members may work with friends and relatives (subject to usual restrictions due to boundary issues) on a voluntary basis with the supervision of their course tutor, or a suitably qualified supervisor if preferred by either the student or the trainer. Any students who wish to charge for their services may do so only under the supervision of a suitably qualified supervisor. Again express permission must be received from the course tutor before a student may charge.


(a) The Hypnotherapists of licentiate and the first two years of registered level of membership shall at all times be supervised by a practitioner suitably qualified in supervision.


(b) All other members shall at all times:


   * be supervised AND/OR

   * be an active member of a peer support group.


Details of supervision arrangements shall be registered with the NCH, as a condition of membership, and updated promptly as any change occurs.


Feel free to ask your therapist about this important issue. Incidentally, Carole Wan is an accredited supervisor with the National Council for Hypnotherapy and, as such, is happy to confirm whether an individual is in supervision with her.


Doctor of Hypnosis?

There is no such thing! If someone uses the title ‘Doctor’ they should be a medical Doctor, such as a GP


What do those letters mean?

If you have read some of the above questions, we hope you are a little clearer! If you are uncertain about any other qualifications, ask!


Who did they train with?

LifeSolutions & The Academy of Clinical & Medical Hypnosis Ltd have been running accredited training courses in hypnotherapy for several years. We are always happy to recommend our own students who fulfil all the above criteria for being both ethical & competent therapists. However, we readily acknowledge that we are not the only training school in Hypnotherapy. We are often asked to recommend individual therapists and usually suggest that the enquirer contact the appropriate register, as pointed out above.

Carole Wan

Carole was previously a Director of Harley Street Stress Management Specialists Ltd. and Training Accreditation Director for the National Council for Hypnotherapy. She is a qualified supervisor and has been an EMDR therapist for over fifteen years, being one of the first therapists in the UK to qualify in this discipline. Over the years, Carole has gained many additional qualifications and attended specialist training with internationally renowned leaders in the field of therapy & hypnotherapy, including Jeffrey Zeig, Michael Yapko and Rubin Battino. Her areas of specialisation include: Therapy with Children and Anxiety & Phobias, Hypnosis for childbirth, Trauma & PTSD.  Carole is DBS checked and details can be found under 'Choosing a Therapist' on this page.


Alan Cooper

Alan Cooper was one of the first students to gain the externally assessed HPD (Hypnotherapy Practitioner Diploma) and he has been instrumental in developing a range of CPD training aimed at therapists and those in the caring professions. Along with Carole, he has also written and delivered courses in both Stress Management and Hypnotherapy & NLP. Alan is an NLP trainer and a fully qualified EMDR clinician with EMDR UK & Ireland. His areas of specialisation are smoking cessation, coaching, stress management & motivation, and IBS. 

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