The Benefits of Hypnotherapy when the Real World Meets the Virtual World

For quite a while now technology has been making giant leaps forward, providing us with ways to learn safely before we take those skills with us to the real world applications.

Recently while working with Melbourne Water, I was privileged to trial the Virtual Reality Program that they have developed together with Deakin University.

Associate Professor Ben Horan and his team from Deakin University have been working together with Scott McMillan and the Melbourne Water Safety Team to develop operations training for their people.

This training covers safe isolation of Ozone generation equipment so the technician may learn to carry out the necessary isolations in readiness for regular preventative maintenance.

The other program they have is for the field staff in the Waterways Division that helps the team recognise wildlife and deal with the potential risks associated. Snake recognition, avoidance and treatment should the person get bitten. Slips, Trips and Falls. And other hazards that senior members of the work groups have identified as worthwhile knowledge to have prior to working in the outdoors.

As a Specialist Hypnotherapist working with Phobias, Anxiety and Travel Sickness I was able to add value to the Programs and offer a solution to a potential issue that happens in both the real world and in the virtual world.

In the Hypnotherapy Industry we call this phenomena an ‘AB Reaction’.

An AB Reaction can happen when the persons Unconscious mind sees or believes the person is in danger and will react in an abnormal manner.

Much the same as when a person is paralysed with fear or runs away. Often known as Fight or Flight.

So how do we combat this and reduce the risk to our trainees?


We Prime for Safety.

This technique was taught to me by my Instructor and Mentor, Scott Jansen.

Priming for Safety and providing the trainee with a safe place of reference is crucial in preventing AB Reactions. Setting up the safety net for the trainees gives them an escape path should the process be too much for them to cope with either consciously or unconsciously.

Ben and his team have placed items in the Virtual program that mimic what the Hypnotherapist uses during a session with their client… A point or points of reference so the trainee/client can check in or be guided to before they get too uncomfortable.

The above image is me have a virtual walk through a new plant Melbourne Water are looking at. This Process aligns perfectly with Melbourne Waters Generative Safety Culture and Zero Harm Strategy.

If you would like any information regarding the Priming for Safety process and dealing with AB Reactions please feel free to contact me.