basis of this model of hypnotherapy is the principle that the normal
unconscious mind is not a 'whole, undivided unit or entity' but
consists of different parts in the same way that the body consists
of hands, feet, heart, lungs, etc. Each part of the unconscious mind
is like a 'part person' with an identity of its own and a function
of its own.
very much like a company consisting of many employees, each with an
identity and function of its own, but all working towards the same
goal. Under ideal circumstances the parts function as a happy,
conflict-free 'family', very much like a family consisting of
different people forming a happy system when all the members of the
family are in harmony. Problems occur when parts are in conflict and
this conflict causes symptoms (depression, anxiety, pain, etc.)
depending on, amongst other things, the identities and functions of
the parts involved in the conflict.
Note: We are not talking about a split personality, which could
develop in severe cases of psychopathology. We are here referring to
'normal' functioning and problems.
Ego-state Hypnotherapy is directed at resolving conflict between
different parts of the unconscious mind. The hypnotherapist is like
a facilitator who guides a process of negotiation between the parts,
in very much the same way a negotiator would resolve a conflict in a
company. In this process the
resources of the patient's unconscious mind are also utilized to
help the hypnotherapist in the process. Once the conflict is
resolved, healing takes place.