I have known Luke for many, many years – from my other life as a lawyer. Luke is a phenomenally successful solicitor, a very senior partner in a magic circle law firm; highly rated by his peers and financially free. Charming, considerate and intelligent, he is loved by clients and colleagues alike.
For the 10+ years that I have known him however, he has been in mental anguish. Weighted down by constant depression, his marriage fell apart and he has been in a series of unsatisfactory, dysfunctional relationships that have left him bereft. His high intellect has run him ragged. In his search to understand and heal his pain, he has spent years in psychotherapy, often 2-3 times a week and at times, tried various anti-depressants that piled on the pounds and left him flat and subdued. Throughout that time, his understanding and self-awareness has increased and his coping mechanisms have changed, but he remained depressed, frustrated and exhausted by the whole process.
When we started working together he confessed that whilst he had no intention of harming himself, he would be quite happy not to wake up the next morning. During the first session it was apparent that he had experienced a lot of pain and trauma through his childhood; that there were demons from his past overshadowing his present. His subconscious was not prepared to revisit them and I was not about to force him.
I decided that I wanted our second session to be very light and gentle. As we worked together, we realised that in his attempt to grow up and become serious, he had completely shut down the creative musician that he used to be. Whilst Luke still enjoyed playing music, he always did so with an element of striving – learning new instruments, taking lessons, improving. Back in the day, however, he had been in a reasonably successful band. Scared by the temptations available to successful 20yr old musicians and the accompanying overindulgences, scarred by the fights with other band members, he had turned his back on the part of himself who played music for the sheer joy of it and the sense of utter freedom that it brought him. We worked together in hypnosis to allow him to embrace that wild, creative genius within knowing all the while that he was now responsible enough to do so without running the risk of going off the rails.
By the end of the session he reported feeling much better. In the days that followed, he sent me a message to say that for the first time in years, he was feeling much, much more positive about life. He was looking into going along to jamming sessions with other musicians – with no commitments, and no responsibilities, just for the fun of living in the moment and allowing the music to flow through him – and that revitalising energy was now flowing through every aspect of his life.
Although depression is commonplace, the reasons behind it and our experiences of it are, of course, individual. For all of us though, in the midst of the darkness, it is hard to imagine that there is a way out at all, never mind being able to fathom the path out of the fog. When Luke and I started working together, he was at his wit’s end – hypnotherapy was something he tried not because he believed in it per se, but as a last resort. And yet, working with Luke reminded me that sometimes, when we are in darkness, it only takes a moment to switch on the light; or in Luke’s case – to allow the music to lead him out of the tunnel.
There are many things that I can help with – you can find out more here