Phobia : how to overcome irrational fears ?
Written by: Loris Vitry (coach and Yoga teacher)
Validated by: Cathy Maillot (Osteopath)
Caution: If you have any medical questions or concerns, please speak to your doctor. Even if the articles on this site are based on scientific studies, they do not replace professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
- 1 Phobias and their origins
- 2 What are the causes of phobias?
- 3 How to overcome your fears in three steps?
- 4 Control the breath to overcome irrational fear
Phobias are fears that are triggered by several situations.
These can represent an obstacle to an individual’s adaptation or push him to avoid the situation.
These fears come from a misrepresentation of reality.
Although these situations are generally not dangerous, let alone terrifying, they can arouse intense anxiety in the person with a phobia.
In this article, you will better understand the causes and the means to overcome these irrational fears.
Phobias and their origins
Phobias can be classified into different categories.
In general, there are seven categories of phobias.
It can be defined as a tendency to avoid certain social situations.
It can be explained by shyness or a fear of feeling public embarrassment.
In general, both men and women are affected by this type of phobia.
Very often, it is in childhood or adolescence that it appears and is accompanied by other disorders such as depression.
It is the fear of going to public places, even in open spaces.
Women are more affected by this type of phobia, in particular, at the beginning of their adult life.
Also called isolated phobias, they include many types of fear reactions.
Fear of animals
The fear of spiders can be cited as the best known of this phobia type.
Fear of the natural environment
In this context, we can cite hydrophobia, which is the fear of water and acrophobia, which is the fear of high places.
Fear of injury
Also called trauma.
This phobia is inspired by specific injuries that can be potentially dangerous, whether real or imagined.
For example, there is a fear of flying.
As noted above, fears, such as fear of the night, etc. often arise in childhood and can persist into adulthood.
Both men and women can be affected by these phobias.
What are the causes of phobias?
Social phobias, as well as specific phobias, can sometimes be noticed in members of the same family.
Which therefore suggests the presence of a genetic factor.
In other words, some people may be born with a predisposition to anxiety, which makes them vulnerable to phobia and all the stress that it entails.
Some phobias can set up in response to a previous traumatic event.
In other cases, however, fear can develop without there being any previous events.
It is common for adults to recognize that their fear is devoid of rational causes, and this can push them to be socially isolated people.
Sometimes the person does not communicate or with loved ones, let alone friends, for fear of being judged to be ridiculous.
Besides, phobias are one of the elements of the development process.
Generally, children go through periods when they fear darkness, animals, or strangers.
Many teens may also feel anxious about the image they project as well as the perception others have of them.
Reasonable fear disappears over time.
Sometimes they can persist over the years until they become alarming.
How to overcome your fears in three steps?
Fear presents itself as an emotion that affects millions of people around the world.
If you have a phobia, specific methods can help overcome or even eliminate the phobia.
Identify irrational fear
First of all, abnormal fear should be identified, in particular, by asking the following questions:
What am I afraid of?
What is the exact situation that triggers my fear?
Answers may vary depending on the person.
For some people, it is the fear of being judged by others or of speaking out in public, so this is social phobia.
For others, it’s the phobia of confined spaces such as elevators or movie theaters.
Either way, these questions may help to understand the triggers for irrational phobia clearly.
Identify and observe physical emotions
The second step in the process of eliminating irrational fear will be to identify the physical symptoms.
In other words, determine the negative emotions generated by your body.
In most cases, you can see a tight throat, intense palpitations, a knot in the stomach, extreme sweating, or a feeling of dizziness.
Whatever the emotions, it is vital to identify them and especially to observe the reactions of the body.
Identify and observe reactions of the body is an essential step that can be used to repress negative emotions completely.
Indeed, if you become aware of your negative emotions during a phobia attack, you will be able to fight it more easily.
Clean the unconscious reptilian brain
What you need to be aware of is that all phobias originate from the unconscious reptilian brain.
This awareness allows the body to connect to the unconscious reptilian brain.
It is thus possible to cleanse and remove from one’s unconscious all negative emotions.
Control the breath to overcome irrational fear
Identification, awareness of the body, and cleaning of the reptilian brain are the essential steps to get rid of irrational fears and overcome phobias.
However, the three steps are just the beginning of the path to emotional release.
It is, therefore, essential to start a deep emotional cleansing in the unconscious brain.
In this context, there are many effective techniques.
Do a breathing exercise to overcome irrational fear
Fear comes from the reptilian brain.
And it’s the reptilian brain that manages the respiratory rate, which makes breathing fundamental in the fight against irrational fears.
It is, therefore, important to correctly control the breath to appease the reptilian brain, and more specifically, to ask it to release all fears.
So you can practice this technique now.
Indeed, to control your breathing well is to have a grip on your reptilian brain and therefore overcome your fears.
It is for this reason that breathing is the basis of all stress management training.
In sum, irrational fears have various causes.
However, the methods explained can go a long way in helping you to overcome these irrational fears finally.