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I have struggled with anxiety and self-confidence issues for as long as I can remember.
I am an artist, therefore as creative person, I struggled with the pandemic and subsequent lockdown, as many people have.
During my life I have noticed a pattern of ‘slipping’ back into an almost catatonic state of anxiety and depression every few years and this was spurred on by the lockdown and unfortunate family breakdowns.
I was in a very bad place, stuck in a cycle of self-hate and lack of motivation to be creative.
My world got smaller and smaller, unable to do the simplest of tasks, such as walk my dog anywhere further than my estate, meet friends for coffee, or even go to the shop.
From the moment I would wake up in the morning I felt dread, an instant fear of what is to come in the day and by the evening I felt defeated and useless for feeling this way over ‘nothing’.
I felt like I wasn’t present for my partner and struggled to look after myself thus missing out on time with my girlfriend and dog.
I was also feeling pressure from my family to be better and felt that they were sick of these biannual cycles.
Before attending Susanna’s sessions, I did have a series of therapists over the years, since the age of around 15 (mainly talk therapy and CBT).
These would help me to a certain point, however when something stressful arose again it would all come flooding back in great waves.
Over the years I’ve experienced stresses, my job is very unpredictable and is not linear, I’ve had three losses in my family in the space of a couple of years, I was desperate for money, so I got a job in a factory which killed my spirit, family feuds, and then the pandemic hit.
This is when I went in search of a different type of therapy, and this is when I found Susanna.
Working with her was different from anything I’ve done before.
Firstly, she gave me a simple form to fill out to indicate what is holding me back, what I would like to get from this and how I would see a life without anxiety.
This stumped me for a while and I was a little skeptical, I could not see myself going day to day without feelings of anxiety holding me back. I was at the stage where I couldn’t even see myself go to a friend’s house, never mind travel to another country for a holiday.
After I sent this form back, Susanna set up our first meeting over Zoom, I had never experienced therapy that wasn’t in person before, but I wasn’t about to complain as going somewhere for me was out of the question.
The session began and Susanna made me feel so comfortable and heard that I imminently forgot we were talking through a screen. It helped me a lot that she was really listening, so intuitive and most importantly empathetic, and I really felt safe.
She explained how the sessions would go and we worked to find the root of my anxiety, which other therapists tried and failed before. I was wary of this as I didn’t want to go through it again, digging up old memories, reliving them and leaving them unresolved, like so many times before in varying therapists’ rooms.
Susanna, however, was completely different, she really helped me, explaining how we will resolve this, and discovered my trauma.
After each session I was to do some basic homework, and though it was very simple, the effect was very noticeable, and I began seeing the benefits after just a couple of sessions.
Almost without realising I was able to go to the shop again, walk my dog in new and fun places, go on staycations with friends. My world was expanding once again.
It has been a couple of weeks since our last session and I am still reaping the benefits. I am now making plans that I couldn’t before, being adventurous once again and living, not just surviving.
I would thoroughly recommend Susanna to anyone, her techniques and passion to help have changed my life and I now look forward to embracing each day as it comes.
Though challenging at times, this has been the best decision I’ve made to care for myself.
During the programme, Susanna asked me to rate the intensity of disturbing symptoms on a daily basis for intensity. I started out first with scores in the region of 9 and 10. The last three week, my scores have all been at zero or close to zero. Anxiety is no longer an issue for me.
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