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 Telephone Therapy
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United Kingdom
445 Posts

Posted - 10/08/2004 :  6:31:47 PM  Show Profile  Visit mark-gil's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I am opposed to "telephone therapy when the therapist has not met and interviewed the client at length. The psychic elements and transference factors cannot enter into the equation. Many psychotherapists offer “telephone therapy” and it is my view that it attracts desperate people seeking help who are unable or unwilling to engage in a face-to-face therapy session.
Most of the cues available to a focused therapist in a one-to-one session are not present in a phone conversation. Cues such as body language, facial expressions, teary eyes, head shaking in agreement or denial, clenching of fists, gritting of teeth, wringing of hands
are neither seen or interpreted. Talk therapy is rapidly being replaced with dynamic interactive therapies such as hypnotherapy where every part of the clients expression can provide the direction for the next therapeutic choice of the therapist. “Deal with what emerges” is the most important rule in therapy. The Hypnotherapist cannot engage the client in age regression, cathartic ventilation, reeducation and suggestion programming by telephone.
With Respect, Gil Boyne

Gil Boyne
[Gil Passed Away May 5, 2010]

Edited by - mark-gil on 09/04/2006 11:23:53 AM


21 Posts

Posted - 10/08/2004 :  11:58:00 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I agree this is only a way that the innocent are scammed and introduced to the "Cash Cow" this reminds me of the phone sex lines where anybody can play the part and charge your credit card with outragious fees, possibly greater than if you booked an appointment with a real hypnotheripist.
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Keith Livingston

9 Posts

Posted - 10/09/2004 :  1:42:10 PM  Show Profile  Visit Keith Livingston's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hi all,
I worked via phone for a couple of specific issues for a while. It was psycho-education - not therapy. I didn't do hypnosis. It was more of a thing where I would teach people techniques and help them understand how to do them on their own. I viewed it as a better alternative to a self-help book. You actually got help in how to do the techniques if you were stuck. I don't do it any more simply because I don't like spending that amount of time on the phone.

The statement "Most of the cues available to a focused therapist..." in the above post, does reveal a problem with phone therapy. If you get a visually oriented therapist it can be rough going.

Phone sessions are a challenge in that you had to have heightened auditory awareness. You can't see any physical signs of incongruence but you could often hear them. You also have to check the results of your work more carefully.

I certainly do agree that offering someone help by phone does get people who are unwilling to engage in face to face therapy. If they aren't going to see someone in person should they be abandoned or should we offer them what help we can?

There are other advantages to working over the phone. I've found that people are much more willing to open up because of the anonymity.

In spite of those and all the other obvious advantages for the client, I believe work via the phone is best for a limited set of issues and when working a certain way.

There are plenty of techniques (especially cognitively based techniques) that your average Joe doesn't know that are safe, easy to learn and easy to do. Should we be regressing clients back to childhood sexual abuse memories via phone? No way.


Keith Livingston
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United Kingdom
445 Posts

Posted - 10/10/2004 :  2:06:04 PM  Show Profile  Visit mark-gil's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hi Keith, I take issue with some of your statements:
<<psycho-education>>-- in fifty years of practice and study, somehow I missed that term!
<<The statement "Most of the cues available to a focused therapist" in the above post, reveals a problem with phone therapy. If you get a visually oriented therapist it can be rough going.>>

The concept that people are divided into visual, auditory types etc. is a largely an NLP concept, which states that people can be divided (by observation) into arbritary classifications and treated(spoken to} in amanner devised to fit the classification. A well-experienced hypnotherapist uses all of his/her senses and perceptions to interpret the verbal and non-verbal, {conscious and subconscious} messages) from the client.Telephone therapy at best is a limited form of "talk therapy" and usually involves a lot of "advice-giving" (which is anti-therapy} and reassurance.
<<Phone sessions are a challenge in that you had to have heightened auditory awareness. You can't see any physical signs of incongruence but you could often hear them. You also have to check the results of your work more carefully.
There are other advantages to working over the phone. I've found that people are much more willing to open up because of the anonymity.If they aren't going to see someone in person should they be abandoned or should we offer them what help we can?>>
This why most telephone "hot lines" are manned by young volunteers with limited training. As to desiring "anonymity", one of the most important factors in therapy is the clients "readiness for change" which is most often created by mental, physical and/or emotional and physic pain.
It the client's responsibility to reach out for help. It is the therapists' responsibility to create rapport, and build trust so that after two or three sessions, the client can say in amazement, "I just realized, I have told you things today, that I have never told a living soul before."
Finally,most therapists will offer reduced fees for clients
who ask, based on their limited ability to pay. Experienced therapists know the value of empathy and the harm of sympathy(except for small children and the helpless aged.}
With Respect to all, Gil Boyne

Gil Boyne
[Gil Passed Away May 5, 2010]

Edited by - mark-gil on 10/13/2005 01:05:51 AM
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305 Posts

Posted - 10/13/2004 :  11:54:59 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I agree with Gil, fancy names don't cut the mustard, and working eithically with a client, because you know you can get results, and wish to give them value for time and money expended is not replacable by the belief that you can do it better, and easier, and are smarter than the rest.....
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Keith Livingston

9 Posts

Posted - 10/24/2004 :  05:35:47 AM  Show Profile  Visit Keith Livingston's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hello Mr. Boyne,
I certainly respect the work you've done in the field and am continually grateful for the advances you and the other modern hypnosis pioneers have brought to us.

Also, I'm certainly not opposed to clients sitting in an office. I think it's a good thing.

I'm just not sure we should limit people's choices. I wouldn't rule out working with people via phone any more than I would outlaw self-help books. Most self-help books have no feedback of any sort built in yet I believe most of us have received some benefit from them in some way. Working with people via phone offers much more feedback than a book but less than sitting in an office with someone. I believe people should have the full range of help available and be able to choose between those alternatives.

The telephone work I did was certainly not "talk therapy" as I understand the definition and it did not involve much advice giving. I offered a guarantee of satisfaction and got good feedback from the people with whom I worked. That being said, I would not have worked via phone on every issue. I only worked with issues that I felt had a reasonable chance of success and very little risk.

In essence, I believe we agree on a lot a disagree on a little. For instance, when you say "How can the Hypnotherapist engage the client in age regression, cathartic ventilation, reeducation and suggestion programming by telephone," I agree with most of that statement. I would not want to attempt regression or cathartic ventilation by phone. Suggestion of course, can be valuable in almost any context, with or without formal hypnosis but perhaps by "suggestion programming" you're referring to a specific protocol or procedure which may not be viable via phone.

Where I do disagree is the inference that any psychotherapist who offers therapy by phone is ripping desperate people off. "Many psychotherapists offer “telephone therapy” and it is my view that it is a rip-off of desperate people seeking help who are unable or unwilling to engage in a face to face therapy session."

I think that statement is extreme. First of all, "ripping people off" suggests a malevolent intent. It does not allow for the possibility that there are people who believe differently than you do about the effectiveness of therapy by phone. Nor does it allow for the possibility that someone uses a set of techniques with which you aren't familiar, that work perfectly well via phone. Nor does it allow for the possibility that you are simply mistaken. Nope, the only possibility is that they're ripping people off. I'm sure there are people out there for a fast buck who don't care about the people they talk to. It's not the only possibility though!

I've seen some studies/articles in the past year or two indicating that certain software can be as effective in helping people get over specific phobias as many forms of face-to-face therapy. Certainly "psychic elements and transference factors" aren't involved in "software therapy." What is the software's ability to read client cues; visual, auditory or otherwise? I'm not trying to say we should all switch to software, I'm just saying that there is often more than one approach to solving a problem. And when anyone says "this can't be done," I recognize that as a belief of the speaker as opposed to a fact.

Here's an email I received yesterday. Though this was not a response to a phone session, you can see the results this one person had from a brief conversation over the phone.

"Hi again. This is (Name withheld), we spoke this morning on the phone around 9:30am your time. I want to express to you my DEEPEST grattitude for speaking with me on the phone. You did not know me at all, but spoke to me as if we had been friends for years. You (1 person) did for me what countless people would not do for hundreds of dollars an hour....the amazing part is you didn't charge me a dime. You have helped restore the hope in my life. I feel compelled to pay you back somehow, but based on our phone conversation I don't think money is the driving force in your life. What I can do is take the time to let you know what a difference you made in my life. This is the first day of the rest of my life and I promise to fully commit myself to the techniques your self-help book offers. As unbelievable as it was to hear your voice on the other end of the phone, (the man who actually wrote the book and not some automated machine) I now somewhat believe that other unbelievable things in my life can happen.

I hope you will share in my joy when reading this e-mail and THANK YOU SO MUCH for being who you are.

With deepest grattitude,
(Name withheld)"

Is it impossible to generate rapport via the phone? No. Is it harder to get people to open up and tell you "things that they have never told a living soul before." In my experience, no. It is easier for people to open up on the phone. Is it more difficult to read cues from the person with whom you're working? Yes. You have less information - no visual cues at all. For these reasons and in my experience that's why I believe working via phone is a viable method but is best limited to certain situations.

Anthony, my definition of working ethically also involves being able to get results and giving people value for time and money expended. I did so for the people with whom I worked via phone.

Peter, you state that "this is only a way that the innocent are scammed and introduced to the "Cash Cow"..." Words like "only," "never" and "always" trigger my alarms too (just like when someone says something can't be done). Is there not one situation where working via phone could be beneficial? Is there not the possibility of one person with a good intent and good techniques helping one other person? Apparently not!

Well, Mr. Boyne. You've asked for my opinion and I've offered it. I hope that many folks will benefit from this discussion. I truly appreciate the gentlemanly manner with which you disagreed with my earlier post on the matter. I also appreciate your tag line "with respect to all." I hope you take my posts with the respect that is intended.


Keith Livingston
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John D

United Kingdom
34 Posts

Posted - 05/25/2005 :  12:18:23 PM  Show Profile  Visit John D's Homepage  Reply with Quote
With all due respect to the posters here, why a client can be "hypnotized" through an audio tape and not over the telephone? And, what exactly does being "hypnotized" mean?

Yes, a client can be led into a trance and therapy can be provided over the telephone. And the telephone is a much more efficient medium than audio tapes.

"Psychic elements" and "transference" factors are simply theoretical concepts accepted by a minority which, like almost everything else, I suppose they work if you believe in them. A sufficient client interview can also be conducted over the phone. Such concepts and also the concepts presented by Gil Boyne are not less arbitrary than NLP concepts. Like almost everything else in psychology, which is far from being an exact science, theoretical concepts are simply arbitrary logical interpretations, or rationalizations, of what occurs and not accurate descriptions of the actual phenomena. Most often belief in those theoretical concepts or rationalizations mold the way phenomena are manifested.

OK, I agree, not only hypnotherapy but any type of therapy cannot be as all embracing when delivered over the phone as therapy that involves actual contact with the client. However, a trance can be achieved and significant therapy outcomes can be produced. It does not by any means replace face to face therapy, but it is a viable alternative for people who for various reasons don't have access to a therapist.

John S. Dovelos

John S. Dovelos, Ph.D.
Athenaeum University International
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United Kingdom
445 Posts

Posted - 05/30/2005 :  2:13:18 PM  Show Profile  Visit mark-gil's Homepage  Reply with Quote

A CHANGE OF MIND- The input on this thread, emails and phone discussions about telephone therapy has modified
my perception and my views on the subject. I made a hasty judgement based on my feelings about some hypnotherapists who
advertise telephone therapy. I know there are many good applications of telephone counseling; crisis counseling, substance abuse counseling,pregnancy couseling and many more. I knew a physician who used telephone hypnosis to reinforce his hypnotic programming for his out-of-town patients to save them time and money and reduce the frequency of their visits to his office. I meant to say that I believe that in-depth hypnotherapy is achieved better with quicker results than with most telephone counseling/therapies.
With Respect to All, Gil Boyne

Gil Boyne

Gil Boyne
[Gil Passed Away May 5, 2010]

Edited by - mark-gil on 09/04/2006 11:27:32 AM
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305 Posts

Posted - 05/30/2005 :  7:06:25 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
...why a client can be "hypnotized" through an audio tape and not over the telephone?
Facinating first sentence. The presumption that since a client can be "hypnotised via a tape," they can also be hypnotised via the telephone? Well, who says that someone can be hypnotised via a tape? This is after all your statement, not one we can all agree on. On rare occassions, a person can achieve success using a tape, and I can achieve success through talk therapy without concluding hypnosis at times, but that proves nothing. We are discussing hypnosis, something that brings success for the client ninty five to ninty eight percent of the time if one is competent. This being the criteria for judgement, any non personal method cannot be judged to be hypnosis, or if so, it is highly incomepetent.
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366 Posts

Posted - 05/30/2005 :  9:59:56 PM  Show Profile  Visit HypnoDoc's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I believe for the vast majority of people today (and most likely this will be true into the future) their first hypnosis type experience is going to be with a pre-recorded audio program. I think if the successful use of a relaxation therapy audio program can introduce more people into the initial concept that they will most likely do a telephone session or one-on-one session at some point in the future.

Likewise if a telephone session can bring them closer to using one-on-one hypnosis then I am all for it. I think we all stand united against any kind of offering that tends to stretch the truth about guaranteed results.


"Relax, Listen and ______ with Hypnosis" Audio Series.
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305 Posts

Posted - 05/31/2005 :  09:50:33 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Love that last sentence Hypnodoc but after contributing online for years, I have yet to find us united on anything (G) Actually, since tapes and telephone sessions are likely to fail to give results beyond an enjoyable relaxation, it is my belief that this will result in less use of the services of a practitioner, since people will feel that hypnosis doesn't work for them, rather tnan accept that the fault lies in the method. Now I am retired, and will always be able to get volunteers for my research, which is now my main hobby, but for those making a living, I tend to dispair of them succeeding if the trend to shortcuts continues. Even Mark Gilboyne and I who have both been in practise for longer than some of you have been alive, will disagree on many matters, and in fact are likely to agree only on the matter of ethics in practise, and even here, we might have differing perspectives bases on our experiences.
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5 Posts

Posted - 07/02/2006 :  2:06:20 PM  Show Profile  Visit Ramleck's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I used the phone sometime to help people with hypnosis.
i.e. let say that a person wanted to qui smoking... Then I met this person (LIVE), practice hypnosis and gave the appropriate suggestions + post-hypno suggestion to help to quit smoking.
Then, let say few days later, the person is having a hard time, something happened and then feeling very stressfull. The person can call me over the phone and then I will help in putting this person in light-medium trance for few minutes only using the post-hypnotic that I put in his mind. But I would NEVER use hypnosis over the phone if I never hypnotized this person live.

I agree with other's replies here. Hypnosis is not a game. That powerfull in 2 ways.
Do it right = good results do it wrong = can cause serious dammages!

Hypnotising a person over the phone without had hypnotized that person LIVE before, is like driving your car with all glass painted in black!

When you sleep, make it profitable!!
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3 Posts

Posted - 08/16/2006 :  11:07:48 AM  Show Profile  Visit drknight's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I have done a lot of telephone therapy and found that clients were more forthcoming more quickly than "live" in the office. So we were able to get to the issues and their solutions much more quickly.

However, I found the concentration required at my end (paying close attention to nuances of tone, for example) was too exhausting. Not that I don't concentrate hard in the office of course, it's just that telephone work seems so much more draining.

However, a solution to Gil's objections about us not seeing the client's face and gestures is at hand. NetHypnosis(tm) allows clients and therapists to communicate over the Web via Skype and webcams.


"Easily Hypnotize Anyone"
the ebook that shows you how.
Dr Bryan Knight
7306 Sherbrooke West
Montreal Canada H4B1R7
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