Psychology

Getting to Know Fears and Phobias

A person’s fear can hinder his chances for development and for success. Fear in itself can be debilitating and can limit a person’s ability to go through life in a healthy way. Sometimes, a person’s fear can rule a person’s life and he becomes bereft of reason.

A person who allows his fear to rule his life can be prevented from leading a normal life. The sad fact is that the person who has the fear is not the only one affected, but also his family, friends, and the people around him.

Fear can be healthy because it allows a person to be on his toes and to be watchful of what is happening around him. A person can actually make his fears work for him instead of against him. Then again, this requires a lot of self-control and positive thinking.

A person’s fear can be caused by an event that happened some time ago, or by a belief that he is not capable of dealing with something or someone. There are fears that have a real basis, but most fears are just the creations of one’s imagination.

Did you know that fish phobia is the fear of touching fish, scales or dead fish. It's called ichthyophobia
Did you know that fish phobia is the fear of touching fish, scales or dead fish. It’s called ichthyophobia

Phobia is also a fear of something, but such fear can be considered irrational. A phobia can be ridiculous and exaggerated such as a person’s fear of cats or of water. Some people who have developed phobias are aware that the fear is not based on rational thinking; but unfortunately, they are not able to get hold of their emotions and rise above their irrational fear.

Some people are quick to equate phobia with insanity; but it is not fair to conclude that just because a person is phobic, it means that there must be something wrong with his sanity. A person’s phobia can sometimes be embarrassing, especially when he is not able to control such fear. There are people who actually shiver and hide when confronted with their phobias.

Phobias can be simple like the simple fear of being in an enclosed area, or complex like the fear of riding an airplane. A social fear can be manifested in the fear of public speaking or of being surrounded by a crowd. Most phobias are characterized by panic attacks such as when the person is confronted by his phobia and he is forced to come face-to-face with it.

It is normal to be afraid because fear is rational. However, a fear that becomes irrational and is already without basis, is already called a phobia. It is no longer normal and can disrupt a person‘s lifestyle.

A person who wants to get rid of his phobia should not turn to doctors who dig deeper just to discover the root cause of the phobia. Such an activity can be a waste of time because finding the underlying cause of the phobia will not get rid of it. What is more important is to be determined and strong-willed so that the person’s fears will no longer rule his emotions. If a person can learn how to handle his emotions, then he can get rid of his phobia.

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