“Recovering” Memories With Hypnosis


Occasionally I get asked if I can help recover lost or repressed memories. The short answer is no. 

Memories aren't "recovered", they are reconstructed, and don't necessarily depict events as they truly happened. Our perception of an event can heavily influence what we remember and how we remember it. If there isn't a lot to go on, our brains are happy to fill in the gaps. Sometimes outside influences can even cause us to "remember" something that never happened, creating false memories. For these reasons I think it's irresponsible to use regression for memory recall. 

Having said that, there is absolutely a place for regression therapy if the goal is to overcome trauma or reframe the past. In this framework we're using the subjectivity of memory to create a more empowered perception of past events. When done properly, the process can be extremely powerful and even life-changing. 

So there you have it. Memory isn't a video recording that can be played back from start to finish. It's much more subjective and fluid-- which for the purpose of emotional healing, can actually be a good thing.

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