Tackling Irrational Fears
We’ve all watched or at least heard of the TV show, Fear Factor. The concept of forcing people to face their fears is not foreign. Even the greatest super heroes, like Batman, face their deepest fears to get ahead. Most of us have some little phobias like spiders or cockroaches. For others, however, it’s not just a distant fear, it can control their life.
Phobia vs. Fear
Fear and stress are natural and important human reactions. Fear is what motivates us to run away, stand guard, react properly to potentially dangerous situations. The fight-or-flight response and the release of adrenaline is what helps us overcome threats to our survival. Even though we are no longer confronting survival threats as often as we were when living more primitive lives, fear still plays a role in our life.
Phobias are fears that take an irrational form. The fears can be based in pretty much anything. Some we understand: spiders, snakes, heights, etc. We can understand them because it’s widely accepted that they are creepy or somewhat dangerous. For most, these phobias are manageable. Personally, my phobia of spiders is largely based on size and whether or not they are in a domestic setting, like my home or bed, or out in nature, like on a walk in the jungle.
For others, however, this fear is paralyzing and invokes strong anxious. The phobias are not circumstantial like a run in with a spider or snake.
Phobias like fear of going outside (agoraphobia), tight spaces (claustrophobia), or social fear and anxiety are common fears that can take a rather severe form and can prohibit our daily interactions and habits.
When we just barely avoid a car accident, or hear a startling sound late at night, we feel our stomachs drop, our hearts start to race, and we get a little sweaty and panicky. This is the result of the normal fight-or-flight reaction — situations in which our lives could be in danger. Phobias, however, though maybe slightly associated with something dangerous (a spider) generally, in that moment do not present a threat to our well-being.
How to begin to overcome your fears?
Most adults live their lives fully aware of their phobias. Since most have a manageable relationship with their fear, most never attempt to overcome their phobia. However, for those who suffer from the anxiety of phobias like social interactions or the world around them or who have severe phobias of animals or objects, there is often an overwhelming of shame and denial.
So, it is important to start by asking yourself: How am I affected by this phobia? If you feel that it is actively inhibiting your ability to live your life, it is important to address your fear.
Overcoming fears does not happen overnight. It takes practice and acceptance. With phobias, exposure therapy is the most commonly known practice. It involves exposing yourself to your fear and working through the panic and anxiety it produces. In the last few years, high-end technology has made a presence in the world of healing.
While exposure practices can help with overcoming phobias, it often falls short of fully working through the traumas that are often associated with these fears. In the upcoming World Wide Transformational Summit, Robert Smith of the Faster EFT Technique, will offer an approach to dealing with phobias that differs from exposure.
Faster EFT, Trauma, and Phobias
Smith helps clients understand that most of our phobias and fears that induce our anxieties and feelings of stress are often related to previous traumas. It sounds silly, but you can even look at Batman as an example. Bruce Wayne’s fear of bats was merely a representation of the fear and stress he endured with the murder of his parents.
With Faster EFT, Smith helps take the stigma out of phobia, and places the power of change in the individual. The tapping techniques helps reaffirm the positive work of the client and helps realign their subconscious mind and all the associations related to the fear.