What is an affect bridge?

By Søren Andersen http://kolding-hypnose.dk

The affect bridge is a specific technique that is applied in the use of hypnotic regression. As the name implies the technique forms a bridge between affects. This is useful when the hypnotherapist is trying to locate the root cause of the clients problem. The client present the hypnotherapist with a problem that manifests itself in the form of a feeling or emotion, that is only felt by the client. The hypnotherapist asks the client to describe the feeling, whereas a word is formed that acts as a reference to the feeling or emotion. By using this reference word, the hypnotherapist can - after inducing the hypnotic state - ask the unconscious mind to regress to the first point in time where this feeling was felt. This will normaly put the client right in the situation, in which the subconscious mind learned the problem-state.

From someone who has a fear of spiders, you might get told that an intense amount of anxiety is present whenever a spider is mentioned. By using the word anxiety the client can be regressed to the first situation, where this feeling of intense anxiety was present. It could be a situation where the client as a child observes his/her mother panicking because of a spider. This observation learns the unconscious mind that spiders should be feared. By reeducation of the subconscious mind, it will be possible for the client to dissolve the feeling of anxiety whenever it isn't useful. This reeducation of the root experience will often make all the anxiety in other unpleasant encounters with spiders dissolve aswell.

The affect bridge is therefore a tool for the hypnotherapist to easily guide the subconscious mind of the client to regress to a past experience that is of significance to the present problem.