Tino interviewed Holly Stone From Holly Stone Hypnotherapy

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You can watch the video here: https://youtu.be/1joxPOW3sFU


Tino: So, welcome back to Business First TV, my name is Tino. I have the pleasure of having with me today, Holly Stone from... I get this wrong every time, it's Holly Stone Hypnotherapy.

Holly: Yes.
Tino: Wow, how are you?
Holly: Very good thank you, yes, thank you for inviting me back.
Tino: It's nice having you back. How are things going?
Holly: Yeah, good, good, leading up to Christmas now, I'm not sure we're allowed to talk about it, but yeah, counting the days now, excited children.
Tino: I don't think we can avoid it now, it's a couple of weeks away now.
Holly: Yeah, not long.
Tino: Not long.
Holly: Not long.
Tino: I'm away, are you away for Christmas? Or are you here?
Holly: With parents family, so it's lovely.
Tino: Hey look, I've had many therapists on the show but I've never had one like you because you specialise in solutions focused?
Holly: I am, yes, makes me slightly different to the average talk therapist. Which, is why I love what I do and it's why I do what I do because it really resonated with me, it is a different way of thinking from the usual, having to dig deep into problems to find the way forward.
We believe, because it's backed by science now, which I like, I like to be able to verify everything I do, but actually, lot of the time, focusing on the problem just makes the problem worse. So, being solution focused means that we acknowledge the problem but we spend most of our time focusing on how life would be better without it.
Tino: Okay.
Holly: So, it's very forward, future looking, positive and we use the imagination a lot but there's an awful lot of power in that.
Tino: That's quite a key thing positive about it because, having been to see a therapist myself, you can sit there and bawl your eyes out and dig up stuff from the past, which does no good... in my opinion, does no good whatsoever.
Holly: I think the nice thing is, that there are just... there's choice.
Tino: Yeah.
Holly: There's choice of therapists out there and I think that there are therapists out there who are exceptionally good at listening and allowing people to offload. And, everybody has different needs. I am not just not the person that you come to if you want to sit and dwell on all the things that have gone wrong and need to talk about the problem because I will say, hm, no I think we'll park the problem and let's look at how much better things will be once the problem's not there anymore.
And, not everybody's ready to do that to start with. Sometimes I will say, go and do the other talk bit, before you come to me, which is great because there's choice for everybody.
Tino: So that sort of, exhaust other avenues first before coming to me?
Holly: Well, I'll be very honest, I'm often the last chance saloon. A lot of people that come to me, have tried counselling, have tried CBT, NLP, all sorts of other things and they've kind of plonked themselves in front of me going, please can you help? And, at lot of the time I can, which is great, because, I work differently and I think people find that refreshing and uplifting and it's easier, because it's fun, a lot of the time.
And, because, we can appeal to our imagination, you don't have to have a great one but most of us can imagine how life would be if life were better.
Tino: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Holly: And, just allowing ourselves to get lost in that sometimes can really start to make a huge difference.
Tino: So, why do you think that people don't think of you, or what you do, in the first instance? Why is it that you're last on the list because, I would have thought that feeling positive about something would be better than to go and dig up the past.
Holly: I think people... I was that person several years ago before I found hypnotherapy and if you had mentioned hypnotherapy to me I would have gone, hm, hm, not sure about that. Hypnosis and an unknown entity, what you think of our, obviously, stage shows and people being made to do things, which actually is a misnomer. But, I take an awful lot of time to explain that to people.
But, yeah, when I was looking at courses, a few years ago, I was looking for psychotherapy, I was not looking for hypnosis because it just didn't feel like the right thing but, as I say, it was based on ignorance.
Tino: Okay.
Holly: So, I think people shy away from hypnotherapy because they don't actually know what it is. Hence, being able to have an opportunity like this to put those myths to bed really and say what it is and what it isn't. So, that hopefully, people will have more understanding and more confidence and aren't scared of it because, I can't do anything to anybody.
Tino: I don't know.
Holly: No, no, I can't and nor can Derren Brown or any of the others. They are phenomenal and I'm in awe of what they do but, it's all appealing to our basic neurological needs, and understanding, and it's amazing what people are capable of, in the right hands.
Tino: Okay. So, what can you do and what can't you do? Because, I guess if you ever go and get hypnotherapy you know, you're going to make me cluck like a chicken.
Holly: Yeah, exactly. And, that's what people imagine and hypnotherapy is not hypnosis, it uses hypnosis to warrant positive change but hypnotherapy encompasses an array of talk therapies. So, CBT, as I mentioned, NLP, basically anything that allows us to change thought patterns and pathways in brain, is what we're looking at. Because, obviously, if we're stuck in one direction, we've got one pathway going and I'm helping people to create new pathways.
So, we're doing talk therapy but we're using the ability to contrive a natural mental state, a natural hypnotic trance-like state, because we know that, that has a huge amount of power for helping us to break the patterns of thinking and allows the brain to actually do what it does best, which is solve its own problems a lot of the time.
I can't do anything, if I had a magic wand, goodness I wish I could a lot of the time, magic things away but it's not like that at all. It's very much in alliance with my client, working together, my clients have to be willing to make changes and put in a little bit of hard work too. But, together, with my skills and their want to make things better, we can warrant really, really powerful changes, in a very short space of time, when you're looking at the timescales associated with many therapies.
It's not a quick fix but if you're looking at 12 weeks, actually, in the grand scheme of things, that's a very short space of time.
Tino: Yeah, absolutely. What's the process? Do people come to your house, do you go to them? I know that you've got a clinic over in Godalming is it?
Holly: No, I predominantly work from home, in Wisborough Green, because that's great, I've got a room there and it allows me to be a mum and all the other things that I have to do. But, I do have a practise in Guildford and in Godalming because it's nice to get out and go and work in different places and appeal to a larger audience.
I'm very structured in the way that I work, I always have to talk to my client on the telephone first. It's no good someone else booking on behalf of somebody else, I won't see them until I've spoken to them. Once we've had the telephone conversation, then we arrange for them to come and have an initial consultation and during that time, I take quite a lot of time to explain to them the science behind the work that I do. I'm great believer that if we understand what is going on, and why we're doing what we're doing, it can empower people that much more.
I could help people, but I think it's really important they understand why we're doing what we're doing. So, we explain a lot about how the brain works, which is fascinating and I have an adult version, and I have a teenage version, and I have a child's version of how the brain works. So, I can tailor it to work with whichever audience I'm working with.
But, that's the first meeting and then thereon after we work together.
Tino: Okay, because it's very much about you liking them, well not liking them, but getting on with them and them getting on with you isn't it?
Holly: Yeah, that is really important they trust me. There's something called a Therapeutic Alliance and that's just basically, as you rightly say, the rapport that I have with my clients. If they want to work with me, if they trust me and they feel comfortable with me, then yeah, happy days, we'll be okay.
And, so far, so good but I'm sure I'm not for everybody.
Tino: Unlike my mechanic, which I go along and drop off car on, walk away you we have to get on, with them.
Holly: Yeah, because there's no one hit wonder, with the exception of smoking cessation, that's a one hit wonder but other than that, everything else is a slightly longer term plan.
Tino: So, there's a telephone conversation that we have, then you have a few sessions with them.
Holly: So, initial consultation, during that time, we... I get an idea, this is the only time that we focus on the client's problem.
Tino: Okay.
Holly: Actually, and this what people find quite difficult to understand until we've explained it all, but actually, I could work with them without even knowing what their problem was.
Tino: Wow.
Holly: Because, of the way that we work.
Tino: Okay.
Holly: But, it's nicer for me to know what it is we're looking to change because then I can really make it personal and be specific. But, actually, from the neurological point of view, and if a client came and they really didn't want to talk about their problem, we could still make some great changes without me knowing what it is.
Tino: That's pretty amazing.
Holly: It is amazing, it is amazing and I think it's just really lovely to look at the fact that clients with an array of problems and we have this very intellectual statement, which is, that a problem is only a problem if it's a problem.
Tino: Yeah.
Holly: Because, everybody's different and what's a problem for one client, might not be for somebody else, but it's irrelevant. If someone's got a problem that they're not happy about then that' what we're looking to change.
Tino: Wonderful, now, I happen to know that you've got a passion for young people haven't you?
Holly: Yeah.
Tino: Okay, so tell me about that.
Holly: Well, much as I might be doing myself out of business in latter years, I'm a true believer... and maybe it's based on personal experience, that, if I had known what I know now, when I was a younger person, life might have been a little bit easier. Because, I'd have understood what was going on.
So, I feel very passionate about empowering our younger audience, giving them the knowledge that I didn't have back then. So, they understand why they feel the way they do, what's going on to make them do the things they do. So, that they can then have a little toolkit at their disposal that will, not only help them then, but they can carry through in later life. That will enable them to cope with things in a different way, that enables them to remain in control and feel happier about life generally.
So, yeah, talking to younger audience, and I unfortunately, see a lot of private clients who are as young as eight, but if I can get into schools, which I've done, and give talks. I've worked with the local scout group doing ongoing workshops, anything that I can do to educate and empower the younger audience is, yeah, very close to my heart. Very important.
Tino: It must be very difficult being a child at the moment, because there's lots of technology been changing, relationships changing, we, as adults, are changing our attitudes towards children are children.
Holly: Yeah, I think change is one of the biggest threats to the human race and certainly from a neurological point of view, from our brain's point of view, anything that is change, is something that is a potential threat to our wellbeing. So, our brains respond accordingly.
I think it's important to look at our younger audience though, and remind ourselves, as I am regularly upon my own children, that what they are living through is their reality. And, it's easy for us as adults to look at what they're doing, with our view and our experience and, not judge, but make calls about what's right and wrong based on our lives, as opposed to what the children are going through.
Social media, who knows, what's going to happen with that. There are pros and cons, I could argue both sides of the fence if I'm honest.
Tino: Okay.
Holly: I think, as you mentioned earlier, screens have a lot to answer for, when it's coming to sleep cycles and sleep is key for our mental wellbeing, all of us. There is so much positive and powerful change that happens when we're sleeping that if we start to upset our rhythms, yeah, we can find ourselves in a lot of problems.
So, sleep is key but with regard to our children and video games, and social media, and, as I say, pros and cons. And, I think everything in moderation is good, there are days when, if I could bring down the whole of social media then, actually, that would be good. But, asking an individual child to abstain from social media when the rest of their peer group is on it, actually could be incredibly detrimental to their wellbeing.
So, it's just understanding it from their perspective and understanding how their brains are dictating their behaviours. And, when we can understand that, then we can understand a lot of the behaviours that they're demonstrating.
Tino: What do young people come to see you about? What's going on in their heads?
Holly: Gosh, that's a tricky one. I think a lot of the time, they don't know. The younger audience tend to be brought by their parents and are, I suppose, put in front of me with a label attached. A lot of them are angry children, and that's using adult words. The younger children, they don't understand what that means and a child will very quickly take a label and become it and, one of the first things I'll do with the younger audience is explain to them that they are not an angry child, all of them is not angry. They are not defined by their behaviour, it's a natural response to them feeling threatened and vulnerable often.
So, once we can explain that to their parents and to them, we can put in place security systems and the children can sort things out quite quickly. But, within that you get, you know, bed wetting, separation anxieties with the younger audience.
Then teens, yeah, they use the word anxiety a lot. I think we're all to blame for that, they've picked that one up, bearing in mind our children learn from us. But, they come through saying their suffering from exam stress, and sleeplessness, and low self esteem, those sorts of things.
Tino: But, in their world, they are.
Holly: Oh absolutely, absolutely. I'm not criticising at all, but I think we have to recognise that our children are learning from us.
Tino: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Holly: So, if we can empower them and explain to them why they're feeling worried, and give them tools to feel more confident, and understand why their brains are encouraging them to want to be part of the gang, even though it doesn't necessarily feel right, then they can start to understand themselves better and generally feel a bit more in control.
Tino: That's absolutely amazing.
Holly: It's great, I love it.
Tino: How long have you been in business now?
Holly: This will be my third year.
Tino: Okay, and have you had any marketing challenges, business challenges in your growth?
Holly: Challenges are every day aren't they? Trying to keep the balance going, it's the one thing I've found through being self employed. Yeah, it's an interesting dynamic, I've run all sorts of different things over the years since having children. I've never been one to sit back and do nothing, but this is the first time that I have really, I think, found my calling so it really matters to me.
But, yeah, the balance between being busy with clients, and maintaining your presence is an interesting one. Social media, yeah, people expect you to be on there don't they? I quite enjoy it, but I'm very selective about when I'm on social media and what I'm posting. I don't... it's not a personal thing for me, it's business.
But, gosh, yeah, I'm always out there, always needing to learn new things to raise my awareness.
Tino: Tell me about your business, so there's marketing, there's accounting, there's networking. I think people forget that, as a small business, we have to do this.
Holly: We are it.
Tino: We are the people that do pretty much everything.
Holly: Yeah, absolutely, which is why I'm having...
Tino: We have many heads.
Holly: Yeah, having opportunities like this is great, I'm a great yes person, I think, take yourself out of your comfort zone, do something new. Because, you never know what it's going to bring. Face your fear and do it anyway. Being self employed, being on your own and a sole practitioner, yeah, it's pros and cons isn't it?
You've got the flexibility that comes with it, but then equally, the isolation that comes with it. So, making an effort to get out and socialise with other individuals is really important. And, thankfully, because of my professional bodies that I'm members of, I have to attend so many hours of CPD, that's brilliant because that gets me out with my peer group. We have to attend so many hours of supervision, so that's spending time with our peers. That also gets you out and socialising.
And, we've got a really nice network, which is growing, of solution focused hypnotherapists in this area, which I love, which is brilliant. But, yeah, networking, all the other things that you mention, and accounts, and, and, and. It's been a learning curve, but I've admitted, and I think it's one of the biggest lessons, what I am good at, and that is working with my clients, and I am very organised, and I can do everything else but I have help.
Tino: Wonderful, fantastic.
Holly: Yeah.
Tino: People who are listening, who want to find out more. What's the way forward?
Holly: Website is a great place to start, which is Holly Stone Hypnotherapy, or Facebook, or, as we mentioned, social media. Phoning me, I'm always very happy to have a chat, if you want me to come and give talks, I'm very happy to do that too. But, I would suggest the website is the first port of call, or the telephone.
Tino: Are you big on giving talks?
Holly: I love it, if I can.
Tino: Okay.
Holly: Yeah, absolutely.
Tino: Get you on and give a talk at some point.
Holly: Yeah, okay.
Tino: If you guys missed anything, there's the ticker along the bottom, you'll get all the details of Holly Stone there. Holly, thanks for coming on the show.
Holly: Thank you very much for the opportunity.
Tino: And, thank you for watching.
Holly: Thank you.


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