The Night Hypnosis Saved My Life!

The Lede

I’ve done pretty much everything a person can do with “hypnosis” as a motivational self-improvement, habit control, perception-response modality. I’ve even created new concepts and powerful techniques for quick interventions with profoundly positive results. I’m quite proud of them and use them now more and more, for good reasons.

Pain control issues certainly stand out (with medical referral). One never forgets when a dying women cries tears of joy because she isn’t in agony and again tastes comfort, nor her husband’s tears of relief and happiness. The looks on their faces will never be forgotten. Working with an elderly blind man or a women on oxygen (also by medical referrals) even pleased their doctors.

My personal favorite with a client was to not only arrange for a musician to play his absolute best and be in a position to win all his rounds in a day long series of grueling auditions against over 1,000 applicants for one seat in one of the very best orchestras in America (!), but arrange for him to literally hear my voice saying just the right magic words, at just the right magical time, while he would be standing in the wings, right before going out for his final round! Now that is a hypno-miracle if ever there was one. When he called me that evening, his first words were not “Wow, I got the job. I did it”. They were, “OK, how did you do it? I heard you … !!!”

These are all examples of successful, memorable heartwarming cases, for others. All were carefully put together and assembled like the gears in a pocket watch. No goofy scripts or tapes. No place for tricks or tricksters.

What follows is the best, most memorable impromptu Hypnosis Effect I ever created or did. And for once, the beneficiary … was me!

The Night Hypnosis Saved My life!

A True Teaching Tale

by Richard Busch, DCH

The year was somewhere between 1975-1977. The gig was over a little after 11PM, which meant the downtown city was mostly either just closing or closed. The night was raw, quite cold and damp, Jack the Ripper weather, so I was anxious to get home. Unfortunately, I sensed one of my tires was a little low, so I pulled into an already closed, dark and dreary downtown gas station.

Walking up to a free air pump (yes, in those days so long ago, tire pump air used to be free!), I saw that the air hose was missing. After muttering a few magic words at the situation that no doubt would have gotten me thrown out of a baseball game by an umpire, I turned around to go back to my car. I figured if I hurried, I could make it home before the tire got seriously flat, and I was only about 12 minutes away. But as I quickly saw, I was not alone. Oh dear … I had company!

“Gentlemen of the Night” were quickly approaching me, but oddly without saying a word. The situation was obvious, their intent staring me in the face. I guess there were about eight of them. I didn’t have long to count as I was being quickly surrounded. You dear reader know what that means! The head Gentleman made himself known as he was holding the very air hose I wanted! Additionally, still without saying a word, he reached into a pocket of his thick, manly fur coat and pulled out a huge wad of folded cash money, as if to non-verbally suggest “you better add to this buddy boy, or else”. I knew what the “or else” was going to be. So here I was, completely defenseless, pitifully outnumbered, surrounded by “scugnizzi,” ripe for victimhood, and in seriously deep doo-doo. At the very least, there goes my AMC Pacer (which in those days cost less than $4,000 new), my wallet, credit cards, identity, jewelry, and the few dollars I had on me.

In those early days of yesteryear, the streets used the concept of “mug money.” That meant, if you didn’t have “enough” for them, they’d “mark you” with a scar to act as a reminder to have enough for them next time! Next time? I was more concerned about the very worst outcome which was either getting the crap kicked and beaten out of me, or worse, a silent knife leaving me motionless, bleeding out, and ditched in a downtown alley, only to be discovered the following morning and on the TV news later that day. However, in the very middle of this still odd silence of the worst nightmarish kind, “something” very mysterious came over me.

I must interrupt myself (and by now you may be wondering if I was killed) just long enough to tell you that at that time, I was right in the middle of very intense study with a clinical psychologist who in part often used clinical hypnosis with his patients. Also at that time, he (along with another psychologist and an MD), taught the art, science, and practice of clinical hypnosis to other mental health professionals only in a series of Masterclass Workshops all over the country. One of them even had a private plane for more convenient travel. I was more than fortunate enough to not only be accepted into the company of this well-published trio who actually studied directly with Dr. Milton H. Erickson himself, but Bandler and Grinder as well.

Besides the private lessons, I sat in as an observer as “Dr.” Busch in selected patient’s sessions, plus private case study discussions at the university and at the local mental hospital. In other words, I was profoundly lucky to be rubbing elbows in this ultimate “fast company.” I was getting a priceless education of “the real work” as we say, plus access to faculty only materials from the faculty library. In other words, I was being filled to the brim with demonstrations of “secrets and techniques” not only via intellectual study of the highest order, but from experiential study, hands-on learning of direct application from real life experts in real life-changing situations with real people in personal crisis.

And now, back to that horrible night of stone cold temperatures, eerie silence, and encircling, ever closing danger …

At the moment of truth where something had to happen, it finally did … from me! I didn’t think about anything. “Something” indescribable just came over me. “It” took me over as I boldly broke the silence and went into a multilayered, multifaceted coordinated series of actions. I somehow felt as resourceful and in-control powerful as I ever have, considering what I was up against. I automatically, that is to say unconsciously, out of conscious awareness, went into a then perfect mixture of certain principles, wisdoms, and techniques I had learned and profoundly began expanding them. On the spot, in a spontaneous instant, seemingly out of nowhere, I somehow put together a hypnotic package on steroids, the likes of which I can only now credit to my hypnotic study, hypnotic resourcefulness, and still to this day growing hypnotic skills. I had almost no idea what I was going to do and say next, but out of me the greatly expanded patterns and combined techniques came. They flowed, forcefully. I was as impressed as they were completely stunned!

All I can say is, I left ALL and I mean ALL those Gentleman of the Night absolutely motionless, stiff like statues. Every one of them was still silent with their mouths hanging open, frozen in a moment entirely of my own creation from within what I would so many decades later call a “Hypnotic Relationship” (my term from The Busch Factor, 2006). Exactly what I said and did, armed only with my words and wisdoms, not only allowed me to slowly but quickly back away to my car and escape, allowed me to drive home safe and sound, but gave me a well earned 100% true, amazing tale to tell. I distinctly remember looking back in the rear view mirror at my hypnotic creation. Still motionless. Still silent with their mouths hanging open. There they were. Those filthy Bastards of the Night!

They didn’t know what hit them!

It was only then as I was speedily driving away that I started consciously thinking about what the hell just happened and first began asking myself exactly how I was able to pull a Houdini and escape with my life and property? It was only then that I started wildly physically shaking as I contemplated what almost happened to me. I countered the shaking and my classic residual symptoms of the flight/flight reaction (not response!) by holding the steering wheel extra firm with both hands as I took a few deep breaths and focused on going forward on the road rather than backwards or standing still. Very soon, distance itself made that horrible gas station vanish from view.

In truth, I learned a lot that challenging night and walked away with far more than meets the eye. The overall experience made me a much better, smarter, more resourceful h’therapist and person, in a great many ways with far reaching implications. It certainly validated a lot of learnings and teachings. It somehow automatically put it all together exactly right when I needed it the very most! I turned ultimate loss into many ultimate gains. For one, it put me on a “Royal Road” to develop some original techniques that I have used with countless h’therapy clients over many decades. The Busch Breath and The AIM Technique – ACB: Anti-Constriction Breathalization are easy to learn skills that have universal applications. Secondly, I’ve got a whopper of an original model for an additional teaching tool in my own Master Class Workshops, should I ever care to teach it and take it to such a degree in a genuinely worthy setting. Thirdly, it has applications to The Busch Effect as I have alluded to elsewhere. At this point, in an exceptionally odd way, I’m wondering if maybe I should go back 40+ years to the scene of my almost demise, and try to find those guys to thank them. … NOT!

They still don’t know what hit them!

Or who and what hit them!

But I do. In truth, that night was a sort of “test under fire” graduation. No doubt about it.

I’m sure a few of you may still be wondering if I made it out alive.

Some thought I did, yes.

Some thought I didn’t.

What do you think?

Richard Busch