Working Her Way Through College

Kristi said to me, You worked your way through medical school. Of course, you were crippled, that made it hard. I'm younger than you were then, and I'm going to work my way through college. Now, the next question is, how much board and room are you going to charge me That was a serious question. The average board and room is twenty-five dollars a week, but you won't have the privileges of washing dirty dishes, vacuuming the floor, making the beds, using the telephone, raiding the refrigerator....

The Patient Who Stood

There was a patient standing around the ward for six or seven years. He didn't talk. He'd go to the cafeteria. He'd come back, go to bed when told, go to the bathroom when he needed to. But for the most part he stood. You could talk to him by the hour without getting a response. One day I made certain he would make a response. I approachcd liim with a floor polisher. A floor polisher has a twelve-by-twelve beam of wood, about three feet long, with a long handle attached. It is covered with an...

Dry Beds

As in Sufi tales or Zen stories, the recipient of the knowledge of the healer must be in a state of readiness to receive. In many of those stories the supplicant comes to the master but is refused entry until the vehicle is ready to receive the riches of the teaching. Erickson often accomplishes this preparation by causing the listener or the patient to wait a long time before he delivers his punch line. For example, when he presented the next talc to a group of students, he spent about...

Gorgeous Way To Diet

Now, another girl was overweight, and markedly so. I pointed out to her, You're overweight and you've dieted and dieted, to no avail. And you tell me that you can stay on a diet for a week, or two weeks, even three weeks, and then you fall off and gorge. Then you're despairing and gorge some more. Now, I'll give you a medical prescription. Continue the diet given to you by your doctor in the past. Stay on that diet for two weeks and three weeks, if you can. And then, on the last Sunday of that...

Manipulation and Future Orientation

In his keynote address to the International Congress on Erick-sonian Approaches to Hypnosis and Psychotherapy, December 7, 1980, fay Haley said, Erickson was really quite comfortable with power. You know, there was a period when people thought there was something wrong with power, but that wasn't his point of view. He didn't mind taking it or using it. I recall him saying that he was on a panel and 'There was no power there so I took over the panel.' With his willingness to take and use power,...