[Author’s note: I liked this program so much, I arranged for you to get a huge discount if you order right away. See the special discount link at the bottom of my review.]
Recently, I had the opportunity to review a copy of Dr. Randy Gilchrist’s new hypnosis program, The Non-Smoker’s Edge (Disclosure: compensated affiliate). Over the years, we’ve seen many different programs for quitting smoking and several hypnosis programs. Some products and programs were good, many were not.
So, it’s understandable that I would be skeptical when I received a review copy for Dr. Gilchrist’s program in the mail.
The first thing I noticed about The Non-Smokers Edge wasn’t actually the product itself, but instead was Dr. Gilchrist’s credentials. He is a certified hypnotherapist, but he is also a Doctor of Psychology, with a degree in Clinical Psychology from California School of Professional Psychology at Alliant International University, San Diego, CA. This advanced Psychology degree immediately caught my attention.
You have to understand that hypnotherapists can set up shop with just a couple weeks of training. Hypnosis is not licensed and rarely state-regulated. This has lead to
large numbers of unqualified people practicing hypnosisand selling books and tapes online.
Until now, it’s been difficult to find a source of hypnosis help that was trustworthy. The publisher behind Dr. Gilchrist’s program, The Hypnosis Network, has set strict guidelines for the types of hypnosis programs they will publish (they won’t do “breast enlargement” and other unproven or potentially unsafe topics, for example). The Hypnosis Network has also set stringent qualifications for the hypnotherapists they will publish. At a minimum, the hypnotherapists must:
So, I was satisfied that I was dealing with a professional hypnotherapist who understood how to treat someone who is trying to quit smoking. With Dr. Gilchrist’s formal psychology training and experience, his quit smoking hypnosis program presented more than just a layman’s minimal knowledge of how to treat the problem.
What exactly is hypnosis? Hypnosis helps a person to relax, distracting them from conscious thoughts which might filter out positive suggestions, thus creating heightened suggestibility and increased awareness. This allows people to tap into their subconscious mind, imagine new realities and results, and eventually manifest those images in their lives. In other words, it allows people to imagine something, see it as real, then make that image come true.
Now, you may be asking yourself, “Does hypnosis really work, and can it help me to quit smoking?” That’s a common question, as many people don’t know much about hypnosis other than what they might have seen when a hypnotist made someone bark like a dog, on stage.
According to research quoted on The Hypnosis Network site, “studies shows that a single session hypnosis treatment to stop smoking produced about a 25% success rate, whereas about 66% of those engaging in at least 4-5 sessions of hypnosis quit smoking after a 6-12 month period. (Hammond, 1990, p. 407).”
Wow! A 66% success rate? Even if that sounds too good to be true, even if the results were half that good, that’s still better results than many of the nicotine replacement therapies (patch, gum) provide on their own. I was skeptical, but I decided to dig into the program and evaluate what Dr. Gilchrist had to say.
The package is a professionally produced, 7-CD set, all narrated by Dr. Gilchrist.
Disc 1 is an introduction to Dr. Gilchrist and to hypnosis in general. The moment the program began, I immediately connected with Dr. Gilchrist. His voice was calming, soothing even.
Disc 2 covers information about smoking, using other smoking cessation aids along with hypnosis, and then he gives 20 behavior modification strategies you can use along with hypnosis. Many of these are time tested strategies, and I have written about them myself in other articles.
Disc 3 begins the actual hypnosis sessions. There are two sessions on this disc. Each session on this and subsequent discs is roughly 20 to 28 minutes long, depending on the subject matter. Session one provides you with the motivation and confidence necessary to succeed as a non smoker. This is so important! You have to believe in yourself. Session two will remove the anchors that you associate with being a smoker.
Disc 4 continues the hypnosis sessions. The first session will allow you to create the necessary associations toward being a non-smoker. Session two is an essential session, designed to prevent a relapse before it occurs. This is critical!
Disc 5 provides two more hypnosis sessions. Session one will help you handle difficult feelings in a new way, thus helping you cope without smoking. Session two takes aim at what so many smokers are afraid of when they quit: weight gain.
Disc 6 contains the last two hypnosis sessions. Session one will help you cope with social pressures that might have previously caused you to smoke. Session two will help you maintain your optimal level of focus and concentration without smoking.
Disc 7 is the last CD in the program. Unlike the positive, “possibility thinking” sessions on discs 3-6, this session focuses on the negative or bad things that can happen if you DON’T quit smoking. This is aversion therapy, for smokers who may need to see the harsh reality of what can and will happen to them if they don’t quit smoking. It will help make you totally averse to the idea of smoking.
After digging through this program, and examining the depth of the research, practical experience and thought that went into creating it, I am firmly convinced it will produce results for most smokers who sincerely use it.
This isn’t just a one-time session, like so many hypnotherapists offer to smokers. This is a multiple session program, that you can follow and repeat if necessary, in the privacy and comfort of your own home.
Pros: Highly professional company and author behind the program. High success rates. Excellent, research-backed program. The hypnosis sessions cover the critical components of smoking that a smoker must confront. Audio program allows for repeated listenings, as needed. No questionable subliminal messages. No spiritual messages that some listeners may find objectionable. Use in the privacy of your own home. Unconditional 1 year money back guarantee.
Cons: No printed manual for people who may want a manual to follow (although there’s really no need for one). Cost is higher than other quit smoking products, although cheaper than what you’d pay for just one 90 minute session with a hypnotherapist.
The bottom line: You have many alternatives for quitting smoking. You can try to quit on your own (2-5% success rate), quit with nicotine patches or gum (about 25% success rate), get a prescription for Zyban (also about 25% success rate), or you can use hypnosis (up to 66% success rate). You may even use hypnosis together with one of these other tools to increase your chances. But hypnosis, specifically multiple-session hypnosis, seems to hold the most promise.
I believe these statements from some of Dr. Gilchrist’s patients about how they felt about smoking after going through the hypnosis program say it best:
"I notice it just wasn’t as enjoyable as before."
"I just haven’t thought about it that much."
"I’ve lost my interest in it."
"Something has changed inside myself."
"I didn’t know I had it in me."
"I feel proud of myself."
"I have surprised myself."
"It really didn’t take a lot of willpower or self-discipline."
"I’ve changed my priorities."
"It’s just not that important to me anymore."
"Now that I’ve stopped, I can’t image why I even started in the first place."
"I’m not exactly sure how or why this worked, but I’m sure glad it did."