Ilan Zechory Clinical Hypnosis
Central Park West, Manhattan
I received my undergraduate degree in Religious Studies from Yale, magna cum laude, where my research focused on the development of new religious movements in the United States.
My training and certification in advanced hypnotherapy came from the very talented therapists Stephen Leeds and Dr. Rachel Hott at the NLP Center of New York.
I've accumulated over 800 hours of clinical hypnosis experience. Helping people make positive change with hypnosis is a source of tremendous pleasure for me. I hope to meet you soon.
Hypnosis is a natural state characterized by concentration, focused attention, and physical relaxation. In hypnosis, you are able to focus on only what's relevant, whether that's a narrow sliver of experience or an expansive connection with the whole world. It feels something like a sustained daydream.
In a state of hypnosis, the critical faculties of the conscious mind take a mini-vacation, allowing the unconscious mind to openly receive communication. Clinical hypnosis utilizes this line of communication to create lasting, therapeutic change in areas of life that are generally controlled by the unconscious mind.
If you want to break a bad habit (smoking, overeating, nail biting, etc.), resolve inner conflict, improve focus and concentration, enhance creativity, manage pain, overcome a phobia, improve sleep, or develop peak performance states, hypnosis is a remarkably powerful tool.
Everyone can be hypnotized.
Even if you have never experienced formal hypnosis, you experience states that are similar to hypnotic trance every day: zoning out, daydreaming, getting lost in a movie plot. If you are capable of these things, you can experience hypnosis.
There are many different hypnotic inductions — rapid, gradual, structured, conversational. I customize the hypnotic experience based on each client's needs and personality.
The major impediments to experiencing hypnosis are fears and misconceptions about what it is. I hope to dispel some of the common misconceptions here. Please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any reservations or concerns about trying hypnosis.
A typical first session begins with a conversation about the problem you're having or the behavior you'd like to change. I will ask you some questions, and answer any questions you have about hypnosis.
After the initial consultation, we will move on to hypnotic induction, creative visualization, therapeutic suggestion, etc.
After you emerge from hypnosis, we will briefly discuss your experience. I will also teach you some powerful self-hypnosis techniques.
Most people find that one session is all that is needed to kick a lifelong habit. Some people require longer or multiple sessions. Milton Erickson, the seminal figure of 20th century hypnotherapy, saw some clients for 6 hours at a time.
Based on the history you provide during a phone screening, we will determine the optimal length of your first session. After the first session, you will likely have an intuitive sense about whether you would benefit from additional sessions. Clients who come for more than three sessions are usually tackling multiple problems in turn.
If you have seen people do crazy things at a hypnosis show, it is natural to wonder how much control the hypnotist has. It is important to remember that people who volunteer for stage hypnosis have an expectation about what participating will entail. The hypnotist selects people who seem uninhibited, and sends the reluctant back to their seats.
Context and motivation determine what makes sense as a suggestion. You will reject things that don't make sense. It would be difficult if not impossible to get someone to cluck like a chicken in my office, just as it would be difficult to suggest that the star of a hypnosis show quit smoking.
Hypnosis is a consensual state. I am literally incapable of making you do anything you're not comfortable doing. If I asked you under hypnosis to tell me your ATM PIN number, you would just say "no" and laugh at me (in hypnosis it is completely normal to talk, laugh, scratch an itch, or shift to get more comfortable in your chair).
Hypnosis is very relaxing, but it is not sleep. On the contrary, people become extremely alert during hypnosis. All your senses are heightened, and you are able to think clearly.
Relaxation and alertness may seem mutually exclusive, but they are not. The "deeper" you go into hypnosis, the more relaxed and more alert you become.
$300 for an hour long session. Reduced fee appointments are occasionally possible depending on your financial situation and my availability.
I don't deal directly with insurance companies. If your insurance company offers benefits for out of network providers, see if they accept claims for hypnotherapy. I will give you a receipt that you can submit with your insurance claim.
UPDATE: 10 months later, I'm still not smoking and have no desire to do so. Still can't believe it. Ilan, you literally saved my life! Thank you!
I've lost 30 pounds since my first (of two) hypnosis sessions with Ilan six months ago!
My problems were late night snacking, and lack of motivation to get my butt to the gym. I gave Ilan a detailed account of my issues, including previous diets and programs that I have tried to little or no avail. Ilan designed two hypnosis sessions to fit my needs -- one to address the snacking, and another the next day for the exercise motivation.
The results were incredible. I stopped snacking at night, and I don't know a better way to describe it other than I've experienced a change in my consciousness when I eat. I'm more mindful of what's going on as I take each bite, and I don't always automatically finish everything on my plate like I used to. I started going to the gym like I had a million times before, but this time I've stuck with it for 6 months, and I'm showing no signs of stopping! I am thrilled, my husband is thrilled, my kids are thrilled!
Having been a chronic cuticle/nail biter for seven years, I was willing to try anything to stop. My father offered to pay for a lifetime of manicures if I succeeded, and I had spent my fair share on a gamut of products that promised to heal my self-inflicted wounds. The problem was that biting my fingers was not a deliberate habit; the act of putting my fingers in my mouth had, over time, become completely inadvertent, like blinking or swallowing. After a visit to Ilan, the biting ceased. I became far more aware of my hands and how I used them. While tempted a few times immediately following the hypnosis to bite my nails, these urges soon passed.
While nail-biting seems like a minor habit, it was a source of significant embarrassment for me. Ilan's help in addressing the problem and repressing the impulse to bite has been invaluable. Kicking these small habits can lend you a large amount of confidence.
I started smoking when I first moved to New York 18 years ago. I've flirted with quitting over the years with no success. Now that I'm all grown up with two little girls at home, I knew I had to quit to be a healthy role model and live a long, full life. A friend referred me to Ilan. The session was really interesting. He asked questions to draw out my motivations. He understood why I liked smoking, and was completely non-judgmental. The hypnosis was very relaxing and cool - I felt some faint urges during the first couple days, but after that, nothing. I haven't had a cigarette since our appointment! (I'm writing this a month later)
As a former soldier, I know something about physical pain, and I have a very high pain tolerance. But in the weeks after being hit by a van while on my bike, I suffered terribly. I fractured my pelvis, broke 2 ribs, broke a lumbar in my back, sprained my right ankle and underwent surgery on my left thigh.
I was taking 2 percocets every 4 hours to little avail. I was struggling to move around and couldn’t get comfortable enough to sleep. Returning to work was completely out of the question.
After a single hypnosis session with Ilan, the pain in my ribs and heel subsided. I couldn’t believe it, and neither could my doctor! I started walking with a cane instead of a walker, and within days I was able to sleep like a baby and return to work. To boot, I found the session extremely relaxing and enjoyable. I give Ilan’s hypnosis the highest recommendation for dealing with any type of pain.
I am a chronic, psycho, lifelong nail biter. Actually, I was, up until a month ago. A good friend of mine, Ilan, learned to hypnotize and offered to give me a session. I never had any interest in being hypnotized or in really dealing with the whole nail-biting issue yet. But since he offered, I decided to go for it.
Being hypnotized is kind of like therapy. You talk about the issue and why you do it. Then he hypnotizes you. For me it felt like there was a black curtain drawn behind my eyes. One part of me was aware that I was in his office, that he was trying to hypnotize me, that I was trying to be a “good” client, but another part was deeply relaxed and very open to the what was happening. While hypnotized, we continued to talk about the issue…
When I came out of it, I felt very groggy and tired. My head hurt in a very subtle, kinda weird way but of course, I just shrugged it off. I was very unclear if it had worked or anything like that, but since I truly had no expectations for the session, I wasn’t too concerned. Cut to a month later and I have had no desire to bite my nails!! It’s a miracle! Thank you, Ilan!!
UPDATE: One year later, I haven't bit my nails once. My nails are long, healthy, and gorgeous, and I feel great about myself every time I look at them.
I had been a smoker for 10 years and had tried to quit many times, but nothing had worked. I came to hypnotism hopeful but somewhat skeptical. It was such a wonderful experience. I felt like I was floating on a peaceful sea, guided by Ilan's voice. Afterward I felt very calm, and confident enough to stick with quitting. I haven't smoked a cigarette since and feel great about myself. Thanks Ilan!
I came to Ilan based on a referral from a friend who quit smoking with his help. My problem was a little different though. I was a little bit overweight. I could lose 15 pounds to be optimally healthy.
I used to dread flying — I’d have to knock myself out with Xanax just to get through it!
When I found out my friend Ilan had become a hypnotist and helped some of our mutual friends quit smoking and biting their nails, I thought I might as well try it for my fear of flying. We did one session early in the morning. It was really easy and relaxing, just a pleasant experience overall and something I'd definitely like to do again.
I just got back from a trip to Paris (my first flights since hypnosis), and for the first time since I was a kid, flying was totally pleasant. It's pretty crazy that it worked, I can't really believe it myself! I am simply amazed at the transformation, and am so grateful that my vacations will no longer be bookended by dread. Thank you, Ilan.
UPDATE: I just took another flight, this time to the Bahamas (tough life, I know), and it was totally 100% fine. I read, napped, and chatted with my brother -- no Xanax and no anxiety at all.
I'm a professional actor, which means going on many, many auditions. A few months ago, I started having trouble focusing during my auditions. Even the slightest distraction became enormous: casting directors writing things down, directors shifting in their seats, producers whispering to each other. Any one of these things could throw me out of the scene and because of that, I wasn't able to act and react naturally with my reader.
After just one session with the wonderfully kind, impressively skilled Ilan Zechory, I developed an unbelievable ability to erase everyone else from my mind and rebuild the room exactly the way I wanted to see it, within seconds. In the couple of months since meeting with Ilan, I have been cast in two plays and had my network TV debut, and I think my newfound sense of focus and control has contributed greatly to that success.
I came into my first hypnosis session unhappy with the current state of a long-time friendship. During the emotional hour Ilan helped me to better articulate exactly why I was upset, and what I wanted say. The cathartic experience of getting all those feelings off my chest to an open and non-judgmental third party was the first step I needed to start mending my friendship.
I'm a professional screenwriter. When I was starting out, I could write 10, 15, 20 pages in a single sitting. Ideas would flow freely, and I'd look forward to beginning a new day of writing.
Then, I had some personal troubles that somehow rendered me completely unable to face the blank page. I would do anything to avoid writing: run errands, see friends, eat an extra meal, and so on. And when I'd finally force myself to sit down at the computer, I'd just waste a bunch of time checking email and reading endless articles until my eyes hurt and I was too groggy to write anyway. It got so bad that I'd sit down at the computer for 4+ hours at a time and wouldn't even open Final Draft (the screenwriting software).
My therapist recommended I try hypnotherapy. I thought why not. Best decision I've made in the past 5 years. I've had 4 sessions now. The first two completely broke my block, and allowed me to face the task of writing with confidence rather than fear and anxiety. The last two sessions have been about exploring ideas I have in vivid detail in a "hypnotic daydream". I come home from each session full of ideas. I know this sounds cliched, but I am spilling words and scenes onto the page as fast as I can type them. I've finished two full length screenplays in the past 5 weeks since I started hypnosis.
Hypnosis has me a more disciplined writer and a better writer. I couldn't recommend Ilan more highly to any writer who's feeling a little bit (or a lot) stuck.