Hypnotherapist Ian Ferguson is used to helping people overcome drink problems.
But he has been encountering a new phenomenon in recent weeks – people who want to cut back on their booze intake in the run-up to the festive season.
“I'm increasingly seeing people who drink a lot and fear things will get really out of hand over Christmas and New Year,” said Mr Ferguson.
“They don't want to stop drinking completely. Instead, they ask me if I can help restrict their intake to more acceptable levels.”
Mr Ferguson, of Dunfermline hypnotherapy business Well Now, says that invariably means putting a stop to midweek drinking.
He explained, “Over the past few days I've seen one business boss who had been drinking a bottle of whisky every night. He, like a few others I've been helping lately, didn't want to stop drinking completely, as he enjoyed going out at weekend.
“Now, after hypnosis, their drinking is restricted to weekend only.”
Mr Ferguson's technique involves hypnotising people and getting them to imagine they are stocking a drinks cupboard for the week. But he gets them to set aside drink for the weekend only, and when they come to they find they simply don't want to drink during the week.
Mr Ferguson is also seeing another group of clients anxious about the festive season – women who want to lose weight.
He explained, “Many of them aren't particularly fat but have simply added a few pounds and reckon that little black dress they bought for last year's Christmas party is just a wee bit tight for them.”
Among his techniques with these people is using hypnosis to convince people that they have been fitted with a gastric band.
“When they come round they reckon they can't eat too much because of this imaginary surgery they've had,” said Mr Ferguson.
For further information:
Ian Ferguson can be contacted at: Well Now, 13 Blackwood Way, Dunfermline (tel. 01383 727096)