I am Rob Hadley, and I am a hypnotist. I run Vancouver Hypnotherapy Inc, witha team of six therapists, working in the field of addictions, anxiety disorders, eating disorders and depression.  It’s a great job. I am also an incurable show off and run The Harlequin Hypnosis Show.

 The company has grown over the years to include our general therapy work, business development services for other therapists, a technical and software department and of course our entertainment department.

Our online department delivers pre-recorded therapies worldwide, and is a market leader. Our technology delivery systems are all created in house and are an important part of our company. We build data systems systems to create advanced solutions for other hypnosis practices, which we provide to a growing number of therapists.

This is a far cry from the work I used to do. Before coming to Canada I was a press photographer working for Associated Press throughout Africa, The Sunday Times in South Africa, and I worked as an Information Officer for the UN on Operation Lifeline Sudan.

Working in South Sudan for UN Operation Lifeline Sudan. This picture was taken by my friend Kev Carter, who died shortly afterwards.

Working in South Sudan for UN Operation Lifeline Sudan. This picture was taken by my friend Kev Carter, who died shortly afterwards.

The work I did in Africa is well documented elsewhere. Charlene Smith, Mandela’s biographer, wrote about me and the work we both did in Soweto during the unrest.  I am mentioned in The Bang Bang Club several times.  It is a life that is a world away from what I do today, and yet in a way prepared me very well for the trauma I find in the lives of clients.

I have an enduring love of Africa, and many friends there still. My second daughter was born there and is a shining example of the dignity and strength of children of that continent.

I spent the first years of my life, from the age of 7, in an English boarding school, being prepared with all the values that would serve me well in a world that disappeared 50 years before I was born. I left at 16, and left home the same month.

I subsequently worked in the City, at Lloyds of London, gravitated toward the media and eventually moved into the news. I worked on The Guardian, The London Evening Standard, The Financial Times, The Sun and other papers, before finding my true home at Associated Press, who promptly sent me to East Africa. I think it may have been something I said. 

When a good friend at the UN fell ill, and asked me to cover his role, I made the transition to Information Officer in South Sudan very easily. I was one of a small number of people who knew the country intimately and had a good understanding of the culture of the Dinka and the Nuer peoples.

Rwanda 1994. I covered situations through Africa during a decade of upheaval and change. 

Rwanda 1994. I covered situations through Africa during a decade of upheaval and change. 


I came to Canada in 1997. After twelve years of working in Africa, covering situations in Somalia, Ethiopia, Sudan, Rwanda, Northern Uganda, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Angola, Mozambique and many others, it really was time for a change.

Along the way from Fleet Street I had picked up some useful skills. I was trained by Associated Press in some powerful technologies, as well as holding a Pilots Licence, and a number of other qualifications that did something to make up for my early exit from education.

Finding no one was really interested in the pictures I was taking, and having a family to feed, I decided to change career and ended up working in advertising and marketing. It was a good move and paved the way for things that would develop later.

In 2006, following the death of my mother from cancer, I decided to make a complete career change and began training in hypnosis. I trained at Coastal Academy of Hypnotherapy, and subsequently received training from Gerry Kien in Florida, and Grant Boddington in New Zealand.

When New Zealand's leading hypnotist Grant Boddington visited Vancouver in September 2014 we were lucky enough to have the therapy team meet him and to build some friendships and great memories.

When New Zealand's leading hypnotist Grant Boddington visited Vancouver in September 2014 we were lucky enough to have the therapy team meet him and to build some friendships and great memories.

By the time I started practicing hypnosis it was evident that this was a good path for me.  Vancouver Hypnotherapy Inc. has grown to become a leader in its field. Beyond therapy, we provide training, data systems and marketing services to other hypnotherapists. Our client care is a standard against which others are measured.

I still love to travel. I regularly travel to India and Nepal these days. I also love to do comedy hypnosis shows, partly because it gives me the opportunity to travel all over the world, much as I did at AP.

I still fly from time to time, and my flying friends are an important, if infrequent, part of my life. One of my greatest joys has been to see my son develop the same love of flight I shared with my mother and her father – a pilot officer in WW1.

I am always available for workshops and speaking engagements related to the expertise I have in hypnosis, addictions work and marketing. 

I am often online on Twitter ( @Rob_Hadley ), and always available on Skype ( id: vanbc1963).