There are close-to-universal cravings and desires that may, or may not, be healthy. And yearnings to be better in something than we are now. The topic varies-socializing, academic pursuits, a particular skill, appearance-but the feelings are the same.

Few can entirely escape sadness and loss; desire for something we believe we cannot have; judging ourselves as less-than-others in some way; feeling misunderstood.

Yes, some of these are unavoidable. But many can be eased or eliminated entirely through hypnosis with a resourceful hypnotist.

Women face certain issues more than men or imbue them with greater importance: Men are as likely as women to be overweight (several studies say more likely). Women are more often bothered by it.

And did you know the smoking habit manifests itself differently depending upon gender?

(Warning: Rampant Generalizations Ahead.)

It’s because the following may differ: reasons for smoking, how the habit started, what smoking means to the smoker-what that smoker believes he or she will lose if the habit is eliminated.

I have written several articles detailing the differences, but here is a summary:

Men usually start smoking because their friends do, judging it a sign of masculinity.

Women involved with others who smoke are more likely to smoke themselves, but are equally likely to start smoking to lose weight.

While smokers are individuals, there is similarity per gender in many aspects of the habit:

Most men start earlier than women, in early teens, so among smokers of the same age, the men have generally been smoking for more years.

Portrayal of males in films, literature, art and pop culture has aggrandized cigarettes.

Not surprisingly, to many men it represents masculinity, independence, and toughness.

Men smoke to bond and legitimize solitude, appearing occupied, not awkwardly alone. Many use smoking rituals to collect their thoughts and buy time before answering a question or committing to a request.

For women, smoking signals sexiness while providing a way to avoid overeating, thereby staying slim. Many female smokers enjoy the gesture of bringing cigarette to lips, and consider it provocative.

In fact, a few men have suggested to me that a woman who “smokes well” calls attention to her lips, a symbol of seductiveness and female sexual organs. Perhaps women smokers intuitively know this or have learned it through media portrayal.

Despite these ‘virtues’ of smoking, many women yearn to quit because of health concerns (higher in women than men), the smell, and a desire to become pregnant at some time and bear a healthy child.

Interestingly, in my mind-coaching practice, men come most often to quit smoking and to improve in business and sports. Women use hypnotic services to improve in these areas of life and many more: to increase their sexual desire and attractability, help enhance fertility, acquire better careers, and dispel fears and concerns in many areas of life.

Some want to boost skills like public speaking, requesting promotions, persuasiveness and a host of other desires, hopes, and wishes they want fulfilled-and fears they are choosing to overcome.

It is usually women who call with a unique request. From these, I discovered that hypnosis can indeed help with acne and other skin disturbances, may replace or aid in anesthesia, soothe irritable bowel issues, ease migraine and menstrual pain, and more. (All medical-related requests should involve the client’s physician-hypnosis should not cover up an ailment that may require medical intervention.)

Women generally make extraordinary hypnosis clients, often requesting lessons in self-hypnosis to reinforce the work and tap into other desires. Men who are eager to change benefit equally, maybe even more when it becomes a ritual like their workout program. Those who successfully quit smoking through hypnosis are most likely to use it successfully for other goals. ©2009 by Wendy Lapidus-Saltz. All rights reserved.

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