LP practitioners are highly skilled professionals, armed with a myriad of tools and approaches to help clients. We are used to genuinely helping people in fast and effective ways. LP practitioners will tell you it is the most rewarding job in the world.

Before we can train to be a Lightning Process practitioner, we first train in Neuro-Linguistic Programming, hypnotherapy, and as world-class coaches, all to masters level. Phil Parker, (the designer of the LP), delivers this training personally to every practitioner. Training is demanding and in-depth, with a combination of written and practical exams. It is also one of the most rewarding experiences, as Phil is a knowledgeable, fun and enigmatic trainer.

It is a rare day indeed that with the skills we are trained in at the Phil Parker Training Institute we will be left stuck when it comes to helping clients. It is a deeply rewarding job, and working as part of a global network, we attend professional development events, clinical Skype calls, and support each other in our work. We have the joy of witnessing clients create extraordinary change, who have tried many other methods to make change without success. Lasting change. Life changing kinds of change! Our qualifications are recognised by the British Institute of Hypnotherapy. If you come and visit any of the practitioners at head office we are all advanced level, and if you visit any registered LP practitioner across the globe, whether that be for a Lightning Process training course, or for a coaching session to resolve an issue, you can be confident you are in expert hands.

This checklist highlights what an excellent coach, counsellor or psychotherapist should deliver, and it is worth keeping in mind when you are reaching out for help,  as to the minimum level of care you are entitled to expect:

An effective coach, counsellor or psychotherapist will:

  • Understand depression and how to lift you out of it
  • Help immediately with anxiety (fear related) problems including trauma (PTSD), phobias, panic attacks and obsessional behavior (OCD)
  • Be prepared to give advice if needed or asked for
  • Not use jargon or psychobabble
  • Not dwell unduly on your past
  • Be supportive when difficult feelings emerge, but not encourage you to remain in an emotionally aroused state
  • Know how to assist individuals to develop social skills, so that their needs for affection, friendship, pleasure, intimacy, connection to the wider community, etc. can be better fulfilled
  • Know how to help people draw on their own resources (which may prove greater than they thought)
  • Be considerate of the effects of counseling on the people close to the individual concerned
  • Induce and teach deep relaxation (to unlock your attention from what strong emotions are keeping you focused on)
  • Help people to think about their problems in a new and more empowering way
  • Use a wide range of techniques
  • May set tasks to be done between sessions
  • Take as few sessions as possible
  • Increase self-confidence and independence and make sure clients feel better after every consultation. (Therapy is NOT a painful process)

Any Lighting Process practitioner possesses the skills to check every box on the list, and will have experience helping many clients through a wide variety of issues.

One question some clients have is, “what is the difference between a psychotherapist, a counsellor, a hypnotherapist and a coach”. Many people have the impression that a coach may be less qualified than the other two to deal with people’s issues. Having trained extensively in all of them I can give you a brief overview of the differences, however, in all of those fields you will get people who are passionate about what they do, are dedicated, and have high success rates, alongside those who are not as effective.

In psychotherapy, there is a spectrum, from one end, that takes many years to complete treatment, and involves delving into your past in detail, to the other end, where brief psychotherapists aim to resolve issues in an average of 6 sessions and don’t focus too heavily on the past. Counselling can take many forms, from people who have done a very brief training course, such as grief counsellors, or who have done a degree, masters and possibly even a Ph.D. in counselling psychology. Obviously the depth of knowledge differs in each situation, however, ironically, the effectiveness of the counsellor may not. Hypnotherapy is a well-recognised field; however, it is not well regulated. It is up to clients to look into the training the hypnotherapist has completed, and which governing and professionally recognised body they belong to, but to be fair to clients, how are they to know that? Hypnotherapists are allowed to practice without any of these measures in place. Again, this does not mean they won’t be knowledgeable, experienced, practiced or passionate, but it seems unfair that clients have no real way of knowing if they are a recognised hypnotherapist or not. Again, the fields of NLP and coaching are not well regulated, and those of us in the know are aware of the various bodies that are recognised as being professional and offer the best training. How are clients supposed to work out who to go to or where to go in order to be sure they are in safe hands, and will receive effective professional treatment.

In my own experience, a good professional body will look for evidence of continued professional development, and will not allow you to just ‘automatically’ renew your membership each year. A good organisation asks its members to undergo supervision, to have comprehensive insurance, to practice in an ethical manner, to a set level of standards and procedures, to continue to expand their training and learning in their field, and will have a board in place to deal professionally with any complaints. I am pleased to report that the Lightning Process register has all of this in place, and has done for many years. Given the lack of regulation of certain fields that clients can get efficient and professional help from with the right practitioner, I can only advise that you may like to bear in mind the following points:

-Does the practitioner belong to a body or an organisation with professional standing?

-Do they have a good reputation? Have they been referred to you by someone you trust?

-Are they CRB checked (also referred to as DBS checked) and have a certificate to show their police record has been checked and is clear. To work with young people and vulnerable populations they will need to be advanced CRB checked.

-Do they have a registered business and practice insurance in place? What is the complaints procedure? Is there a recognised professional body you can complain to that will take your complaint seriously and investigate it?

-Do you feel relaxed with them and that you can relate to them? Are they open and friendly, yet professional, or do they use a lot of jargon and make you feel ill at ease?

-What is the average number of sessions they see clients for? Are they asking you to pay for several sessions in advance? Do they have experience in the area of help you are reaching out for?

-You can use the effective therapist list above to help guide you on your journey to health and wellness to ensure you are with the right practitioner.

As Lightning Process practitioners, we are passionate about helping others, we care deeply about professionalism and clients’ well-being.  If you would like any more information on how the Lightning Process may help you, as it has done for thousands of others, please contact us at info@philparker.org, and you can arrange a free chat with one of us.