Hypnosis for Smoking Cessation

An NLP and Hypnotherapy Practitioner's Manual

By: David Botsford


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Size: 254mm x 178mm
Pages : 288
ISBN : 9781845900748
Format: Paperback
Published: September 2007

This is the first book written for hypnotherapy and NLP practitioners that is devoted entirely to the use of these techniques in enabling smokers to quit. It has been written by a Harley Street hypnotherapist with over 12 years' experience in helping clients to quit smoking in one-to-one sessions. Combining Ericksonian hypnotherapy and NLP with techniques from cognitive therapy, yoga and stress management, the book shows how to deal with every possible situation in smoking cessation. How to influence the client even before the session, how to deal with the client on arrival and how to teach self-hypnosis and other techniques which will keep the client a non-smoker after the session. Providing a practical plan for marketing a hypnotherapy smoking cessation service at low cost but high impact.

Includes free digital client workbook. 

Picture for author David Botsford

David Botsford

After working in computers, David Botsford trained in hypnotherapy. In 2000 he trained in stage hypnosis, and performed on television, stage and for private events. In 2003 he produced a series of seven self-hypnosis CD sets and from 2005 trained hypnotherapists in smoking cessation and marketing.


  1. I had this book sitting on the shelf for quite a while, always with the nagging feeling that I did not want to get into it. Why? Because I am a lazy, lazy man. Yes, but I surmised eventually that actually my procrastination had sprung from not wanting to put in the effort of shifting my frame of thinking. I have, after all, been practicing successful smoking cessation using NLP and Hypnosis (in my South Manchester practices) for years. All very well for the newcomers to the hypnotherapy profession of course, but I did not need to read this or have time to mess with my paradigm, (what with the writing, my practices and other businesses.) How wrong I was, for the established professional and newcomer alike this book is required reading.

    Crown House has brought out a line of books (that can be identified by their plain white cover and colourful writing) that offer the definitive word in treating various popular problems that the therapist will face in their practice. So in addition to Weight, Hypnotherapy and You and Treating Stress and Anxiety, Hypnosis for Smoking Cessation makes up the three most popular complaints that a client is likely to present with. As I read the book I found it easy to put aside my own way of treating smoking and was if a newcomer to the subject, I would like to boast that this was a feat of objectivity through the application of my own will but I cannot.

    The book is written in such a way that, although it was not my initial intention at all, I was happy to throw away my old way of working in this area, I had avoided getting into the book initially out of laziness but the path to true ease in my practice (of what is the number one presentation in hypnotherapy), lay in opening the book and allowing my old protocol to fall away. Why had I made it so complicated in the past? Since qualifying I had been adding to the authoritarian direct “suggestion script I had inherited and that I knew to be less than sufficient. There are many books out there on smoking cessation ” I know because I've got a lot of them and had tried to take everything of value from each as none I found had explained everything. This actually led me to comprise an unwieldy, complicated and lengthy protocol ” let this stand as a cautionary tale to the newcomer.

    But now here was a way of working that streamlined everything and so simple that I was looking forward to seeing my next smoking cessation client. David Botsford seems to know how to walk the fine line between preparing you for every situation and leaving no eventuality un-discussed yet providing simple, and only in retrospect, very obvious and logical solutions. He espouses a very content-free approach in as much as the therapist is not asked or expected to take a big life history, any issues are explored and very quickly dealt with as you stream through the process. For example if a client has in the past successfully stopped smoking for over two weeks, a certain “module' is indicated in the “script'. If not then that's another path, but after that modular diversion you return to the core process so no matter what it is dealt with and you continue. Another example, and this is more common than I thought it would be, how do you address the client who smokes cannabis and wants to quit that too, and what about a client who wants to quit tobacco but not cannabis? In the past I my have been tangentially thrown by this into a lengthy discussion that swallowed maybe half a session, but now these are just quick things ” then back to the core work. And so in this way each client is not labelled or classified but can very easily be guided through the process as and when these points come up. Each client can be streamed through the process in a way that is still appropriate for him or her but very easy for the therapist. Each revelation as it comes is so easily remembered, the author takes us through every aspect, some things I had not even considered let alone got any answer to. What colour suit shall I wear? How can I dramatically drop the no-show rate? What will increase the likelihood of an answer to a speculative letter? Should I use one / two sessions? Should I offer a guarantee or back up session? Should I give out a CD?

    After reading the book, I expect the success of my practice in this area to increase of course, but even more so I am looking forward to continuing to enjoy the decrease in the time and effort expended on each case that has been my experience since adopting Botsford's method. The method is clear, everything is scripted, a “free' CD is attached full of transcripts, there are checklists too, scripts for follow ups and recidivists.

    Whether it be for a car, a home, a job, a shirt, at a certain point in every search (and for me particularly with respect to a smoking cessation method) one has to move away from the ideal of the “perfect buy' that comprises everything, as one eventually off-sets the search costs against the choice of an effective and pragmatic product. For the newcomer now those variables have been all but taken out of the equation and for the established professional this may mark the end of long search.

    Not only in smoking cessation have I found the value of this book, to be higher than it's nominal cost. Picking up the larger frames from Botsford's technique has taught me, or reminded me of, a lot; - the use of utilisation and validation at every point of the client's experience, the way one acts on the phone, before meeting, in the waiting room, when making a home visit etc. I believe those not familiar with Erickson or with NLP would receive a degree of de-facto training, in proxy, as the higher frames of these approaches effortlessly permeate every chapter of the book.
  2. I think this is a fantastic book, written in a frank, easy to read manner. It has been presented as an honest approach to help clients to stop smoking. David has correctly identified that success with clients largely depends on “getting it right at every stage in the session”. His book is filled with valuable information, like tips on preparing for the session, word for word trance inductions, how to educate the client to gain control and several useful hypnotic techniques.

    The author has obviously devoted much time to research, and has even elicited strategies from NLP to ensure client success. In my clinical practice as a Hypnotherapist for over 35 years, I have realised that it is not only important to use such strategies and to get the details right, but also to know about marketing skills and techniques. The book gives valuable suggestions in building these skills, both for a “One to one practice” and also for the corporate market. His step by step guide includes funding, designing & preparing corporate seminars.

    I Would highly reference manual for the beginner and the seasoned therapist, as it contains valuable information for both to help their clients succeed with their sessions. Moreover the accompanying CD gives it the final touch making it a necessary and useful kit for every Hypnotherapist.
  3. This book should be beneficial to all hypnotherapists and NLP practitioners, not just to help them to assist clients who wish to stop smoking but in all aspects of their practice. It is written in simple, everyday language and is full of sensible, practical advice, including hand-outs which can be copied and given to clients and a CD which can be played during the stop-smoking therapy session to further assist clients to achieve their aim. The author is obviously very experienced in the art of hypnosis and NLP and appears to have great success in helping smokers to give up the habit.
  4. What an excellent book. Every aspect of helping a client to stop smoking is covered in an intelligent and insightful way, and there is the bonus of the accompanying CD. The best book I have come across on this subject.

    Ursula Markham, Founder, The Hypnothink Foundation
  5. This book is a manual for hypnotherapists offering smoking cessation; but it is much more than that - it is a manual for all professional hypnotherapists. The advice and techniques given are so useful in a broad range of areas, and the writing style so clear and readable that it should be used by all professional therapists (you can easily adapt the scripts to suit other conditions). The book contains guidance on setting up and marketing; on giving one-to-one and group sessions; on marketing to the corporate market; and on follow-up with clients. It also contains possibly the best chapter on self-hypnosis that I have ever seen - simple yet effective. It is an excellent book and I for one would like to hear more from David Botsford.
  6. A well set out and easy to follow format. David clearly covers the personal as well as the corporate market and how to approach each as clients. He has recognised the combination of situations and events in which people find themselves drawn / driven to smoke and how to bring these unconscious drives into consciousness.

    I particularly liked the way in which David recognises the pitfalls which can occur and explains how to circumvent them. His “ticklists” and charts are of great benefit as a guide to asking the right questions from your client. Having the CD is an added bonus.
  7. As a professional therapist and trainer I found David's book to be a valuable addition to a therapists library. I feel that this supersedes all previous offerings on smoking cessation and will become the definitive text on the subject. As with all David's work it is well researched and presented logically. I have now added this book to my students study book list.
  8. In one volume, David Botsford has managed to supply everything the practitioner should need to get started on a successful career helping clients to stop smoking. It is an easy and enjoyable read, written in a friendly style by someone who knows what he is talking about.

    Even the experienced therapist will gain a lot from this book and find enough to hone their skills in this area. The methods seem to have been tried and tested and work well for David and there is no reason why they would not work well for anyone as you are led easily through the process from beginning to end.

    A great book worth much more that the asking price.
  9. Whether you are a newly-trained hypnotherapist, or a seasoned practitioner who has conducted smoking cessation programs for years, Hypnosis for Smoking Cessation, by David Botsford, has something for you. This book is the comprehensive manual for practitioners who want to become expert at helping people stop smoking and remain smoke-free.

    According to the Centers for Disease Control, there are approximately 50,000 smokers in the U.S. alone. For every smoker who quits, another person is lighting up for the first time. Hypnosis has been shown to be more effective than many other smoking cessation methods such as nicotine gum or the nicotine patch. Smokers represent a lucrative market for practitioners, and smoking cessation can be a worthwhile skill.

    Botsford gives the nuts and bolts on the clinical side as well as the business side. Following the advice of Milton Erickson, he encourages readers to tailor the hypnosis experience for every client; to utilize the client's achievements and successes as anchors for resourceful states, and to call on the client's values, beliefs, and spiritual development as motivating factors for quitting.

    He shows how to enhance the client's resolve. He asks the client to see himself as a non-smoker and intensifies the submodalities of the image to make it compelling. He aligns his suggestions with the client's model of the world, having each client choose meaningful symbols, metaphors, words and images that can be woven into the hypnotic session. Botsford provides transcripts of his sessions as examples that tell readers exactly what he says and how he says it.

    The book discusses several therapeutic strategies for working with smokers, such as reframing the need to smoke, educating the client about the effects of nicotine, utilizing the client's previous successes in quitting, eliciting the client's smoking strategy, asking about how the client finds ways to relax or meditate, and clearly establishing the client's outcome. Then Botsford demonstrates how all these aspects are covered in hypnosis to convince the client to stop smoking.

    He devotes an entire chapter to teaching the client self-hypnosis as a means to control urges and to prevent relapse, minimize weight gain, and cope with stress. He also teaches his clients how to anchor a positive, resourceful state, in relation to the satisfaction of being a non-smoker.

    For practitioners who work one-on-one in smoking cessation, Chapter 7 is the highlight of the book. This chapter contains a transcript of a complete hypnotherapy session. The approach combines Ericksonian utilization (via revivification of resourceful memories) and direct suggestions. It covers various methods of induction, as well as how to bring about a learning set, suggestions for forgetting about the need to smoke, deepening, methods to promote abstinence, ego-strengthening, future pacing, and reorientation"even what to say and do after the hypnosis is done. What I found particularly useful is the information on how to help the client prevent relapse.

    The author addresses the managerial aspects of a smoking cessation practice: how to set the fee, structure the client-therapist relationship, explain hypnosis to the client, develop a therapeutic communication style, respond to phone inquiries, book appointments, schedule the work day,-”even how to dress in a professional manner. The CD that accompanies the book contains pdf files that the reader can print and begin using in his or her practice immediately.

    As a bonus, hypnotherapists working with groups and in corporate smoking cessation programs will find much value in Botsford's description of a complete corporate training seminar"how to market, conduct, and evaluate the seminar.


    I like this book for its specificity, and also for the flexibility it gives to the reader in adapting the instructions to one's own way of doing business and practicing hypnotherapy. The tips, scripts, and checklists are very helpful and instructive. The approach is practical and marketable. Even as a hypnotherapist and NLP practitioner who has conducted smoking cessation for over twenty years, I still learned many things that are new and worthwhile from this book. I give it a five star recommendation!
  10. This is the most comprehensive, all-inclusive book on smoking cessation that I have ever read.

    Encompassing Ericksonian therapy, NLP, cognitive therapy and much more, David Botsford takes the reader through a wide-ranging outline of the entire process involved, even to after-session situations to keep the client a non-smoker. Replete with helpful suggestions and tips for success this manual shows the practitioner how to build a profitable smoking cessation programme.

    Included with the book is a CD containing transcripts of two actual sessions as well as client handouts.

    This is essential reading for anyone involved, or wishing to start, smoking cessation therapy whether with individuals or groups. A highly recommended book.
  11. This book constitutes a superb addition to the library of any serious hypnotherapist. A much needed resource for those seeking to help the millions of people who desire to free themselves from the bane of smoking once and for all. David deserves to be praised for having put things so clearly and making the means of helping others by modern hypnotherapy more readily accessible.
  12. Well respected hypnotist and hypnotherapist David Botsford has turned his attention to helping his fellows in field with their smoking cessation techniques. Having reviewed some of his consumer based hypnotherapy CDs I was interested to see how he would get on with this near academic tome.

    Well I needn't have wondered as the talented Mr Botsford has produced a book that is both informative and expansive. The book includes a CD with handouts for clients and as well as two full transcripts.

    The book itself is presented in a professional way and is easy to find your way round. Its easy to read; befitting Botsford normal style of writing. While not aimed at me per se; I can see how this book will be a valuable addition to the library of any practitioner.

    Considering the pressure smokers are coming under from all sides these days I am sure that hypnotherapists are finding many people using their services to end their habit. With this book they can get up to speed with the latest effective techniques to maximise their clients efforts. In fact the book addresses these pressures in its text.

    Botsford continues to produce quality with whatever he does. This is no exception and it is no surprise there are many recommendations on the back of this book from his fellow professionals.
  13. David Botsford has written a book that like many others has a lot of useful information in it, but it is outstanding and unique for two actual reasons:

    1) it is the first time (and I have read hundreds of books) that I encounter a so live, personal account of a professional growth of a practitioner, including his difficulties and plans to -˜survive';
    2) the part about marketing is extremely good.

    I don't think that it is enough clear what I have said. Thus I will be more clear. From page 171: “nearly 85% of people who train in hypnotherapy in UK go out of business within twelve months” (only a 15% survives). Well, Botsford gives what is needed to stay within that 15%. Point.
  14. David Botsworth has produced a wonderfully honest and frank dissection of his approach to helping clients stop smoking that is as eclectic in its sources as it is in its appeal to hypnotherapists from all backgrounds. This book and its accompanying cd can be seen as a 'complete kit' for those therapists and students of hypnotherapy wishing to expand upon their knowledge, understanding and skills when working with smoking cessation as David covers every aspect of his approach by offering sound advice ranging from the personal preparation of the therapist through to working in the corporate arena. This excellent book should be welcomed with open arms.
  15. It was with a certain amount of scepticism that I received the above book to review. We are in the age of smoking legislation and many books are appearing on bookshop shelves announcing that they can help the reader quit the habit once and for all. Their quality varies from moderate to pulp material. And here, through the post, came another one - a heavy tome at that.

    I need not have worried. This book is written by an expert in the field, a passionate exponent of hypnotherapy and associated therapies. It is written with deep understanding and thorough knowledge and is an immensely readable book.

    The author, a Harley Street Hypnotherapist, provides the reader with an extensive overview of the whole process of helping someone stop smoking. The most valuable insights that this book offers is in the development of how such therapy is essentially individual. Although we have great detail on how to approach the client during the actual therapeutic session, there is excellent material which shows the therapist how s/he needs to prepare individually for every single client. It is by no means sufficient to just be aware of how to enable the client to quit during the session, but there is much to do to prepare before the session and for follow up too.

    I feel that this book honestly deals with basically every possible situation that can arise in stop smoking sessions and highlights how we need to approach a client at each stage of the proceedings from the initial contact right through until after the session.

    The question and answer sessions and also therapy scripts are excellent. Indeed I have introduced some of the material into my own work and have been impressed by the results. The whole experience has become a more ” rounded” one where clients have felt a deep sense of involvement and understanding at every step.

    For the practitioner there will be many areas which have already been considered by them before BUT I feel that here the importance is that there is reinforcement and even development of ideas and thoughts and feelings. We all need to be open to change and varying our approaches in the view of new material that is described to us. David Botsford embraces not only Hypnotherapy and NLP but also other techniques from cognitive therapy, yoga and also stress management. It widens the variety of tools e have available within the therapeutic toolbox so that we can ensure that the client receives the fullest and most positive help it is possible to give. Indeed the word POSITIVE underpins every step of the process.

    A section has also been included which endeavours to provide a practical outline of how to plan and develop your hypnotherapy smoking cessation service economically but effectively. Unusual to find this in a book and, I found, of great use and interest.

    David Botsford has written a book here which is of superbly high standard. He challenges us to see the smoking issue against a wider backcloth and to see that our own work extends outside the actual session of hypnotherapy, something that may have been taken for granted by some.

    The whole work is insightful and is one of the most valuable reference manuals that I have ever come across. Everything is very clearly explained. I actually enjoyed reading it and celebrated the fact that this was written in clear English and not masses of scientific jargon. It is a most useful book and I see this being essential reading and reference material for every practising therapist. The book is designed to familiarise the therapist with the skills and approaches necessary to work in an effective and efficient way. There is something in it for everyone, the young, starting therapist to the more widely experienced. It stimulates thought and makes one examine ones own work. I feel we all have the potential to learn something from this excellent book.

    I would say that I feel this is an essential addition to the bookshelf of every Hypnotherapist. However, on further thought, I feel that it will be so useful a reference source that it will seldom be on the shelf but will merit constant use.I feel that this will soon be regarded as the best book available in this field. It certainly deserves to be given this distinction.

    I recommend it to you.
  16. When I first came across this book, I was immediately sceptical ” with the UK still adjusting to the public smoking ban and a number of other books on smoking already on the market, I wasn't sure there was room for another. However, this book, aimed at practitioners and written by a Hypnotherapist who specialises in smoking cessation, quickly captured my attention.

    Starting with the basics of trance, the book covers every conceivable aspect of smoking cessation; from home visits to corporate seminars, satisfaction guarantees to self-hypnosis, marketing to marijuana, this book attempts to be the definitive practitioner manual on the subject. And a very good job it does too.

    The author's central message is that it is not enough to simply hypnotise a client and give them suggestions to become a non-smoker; rather, the hypnotherapist must also equip the client to deal with situations they might face in the future.

    In this quest, the author draws from a diverse spectrum of techniques - from Ericksonian Hypnotherapy, NLP, Stress Management and Cognitive Therapy to Yoga and the Hawaiian Kahuna. At times humorous, at times prescriptive, the book reflects the author's belief that success in Hypnotherapy depends on getting every detail right.

    By the end, there is no doubt as to the author's approach, and the checklist chapter allows the reader to emulate it exactly. I was left feeling as if I had actually spent time observing the author in practice.

    This book will appeal to a wide audience. Newly qualified practitioners will appreciate the detailed explanations and transcripts, which not only explain how a smoking cessation session should be structured, but also the reasons why. Practitioners who find comfort in scripts will find this book a real treasure trove of material. Experienced practitioners will enjoy dipping in from time to time to refresh their minds on the things that can make or break a session, and the opportunity to see another practitioner in action.

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