1. What would you do?
2. How would you feel in that situation?
According to hypnotists like Milton Erickson, every one of our thoughts and emotions is actually a form of hypnosis either suggested by ourselves or someone or something else. Most of us would be filled with fear in the above example, especially if most of our net worth or debt was invested in that house. But if that cop called back 10 minutes later and said he made a mistake about it being our house that got burnt, our reality would instantly shift to one of relief, even though, surprisingly, nothing actually changed, just our thoughts about it. This goes to show how much power an actual word, phrase or sentence can have on our "reality" and also implies that reality is much more subjective and based on a person's perspective and worldview than most people realize.
Another example is in churches. If you study hypnosis one of the first steps is to create a Motivation in the subject or yourself (getting to heaven - fear is a negative and harmful motivator), the next likely step is Relaxation like what most of us experience at churches when the music plays. That brings us to the 3rd likely step, Suggestion (like when the pastor speaks).
I personally believe in self-hypnosis and to the extent that if we are not hypnotizing ourselves, commercials on TV, Facebook, ABS-CBN and CNN are hypnotizing us instead. There is a lot more to hypnotism than this but it is definitely under-rated and I think it's effectiveness is hidden from the public in order to maintain corporate profits, maintain the political status quo, further the mental, emotional, physical and spiritual dependence of the general public (to generate money and power for the few), and keep centralized religions in place.
Read about Hypnotism on Wikipedia.