I have a couple of phobias and most of us do. Most of us are afraid of something.Whether it’s an extreme fear i.e. phobia or just something that makes your heart race, we are all afraid of something.
Irrational fears such as phobias can be debilitating to the person suffering from it. Ok, so I’ll just put this out there, I have two very big phobias and maybe a few small ones. The two big ones, Arachnophobia (fear of spiders)and Acrophobia(fear of heights) have plagued me for years because they inhibit me from doing anything that involves either.
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How it affected me growing up….
I remember growing up when my family would go on vacation, my mom would always have to get a room on the floor closest to the ground otherwise, I wouldn’t be able to make the walk from the elevator to the hotel room. There were even a couple of times when she wasn’t able to select a different room, so we had to go with what we were given and I had to be carried to the room with my eyes closed because I physically couldn’t walk.
My fear of heights is so strange because when the fear sets in, my body does this strange thing where my legs turn into jello, rendering me in a sort of handicap when it comes to walking. My fear of spiders isn’t much better but I can happily say that it doesn’t inhibit my physical capabilities.
My thoughts on overcoming them….
I’ve always wanted to overcome these fears, because damn it, I don’t want some stupid idea in my head to run my life. With spiders, I’ve tried looking at pictures online and it only makes me sick to my stomach. One crawled on my stomach one time when I was sleeping and I woke up to it staring me in the face which caused me to leap out of bed and scream and I stood there in a zombie-like trance for like an hour until the shock of it wore off.
Think I’m being dramatic? Well, let a spider crawl onto your bare skin and see how you feel. As far as heights, I’ve tried exposing myself to higher, well, heights, and didn’t make it very far. That’s the major problem with phobias, their hold over your psyche is unparalleled.
Those phobias aren’t my only fears, though. I have smaller fears that I encounter every day like driving, public speaking, rejection, and failure. Those I think are more attainable fears to overcome. Take public speaking, for example, I’ve always been afraid of speaking in front of large groups of people, as are most people. It’s a very common fear.
Little tricks I’ve learned…..
I found a way to overcome this, though. In school, when we had an oral assignment, I would always volunteer to be first when presenting, because I found that if I got it over with quickly, I would be better off. Think about it, if you wait and wait and wait to do a speech, you’re adding more pressure to yourself and the tension builds making you far more likely to “mess up” than if you just get it over with.
That is the secret to overcoming a small fear, just facing it head on. This won’t work with phobias, but if you apply this philosophy to small everyday fears, you’ll find yourself way more likely of overcoming it.
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How do you overcome your fears? Tell me what your phobia is (if you have one).