Fear is something that everyone has to deal with at some point or another. People experience different kinds of fear at different levels. For some social settings and social anxiety can get the better of them. Others are terrified of spiders or heights. The list of phobias is long and non-exhaustive, but there is help for the problem of fear, especially when it stops people from making the most out of life. While there are no quick fixes to deep-rooted psychological disorders and other long-term issues, there are various forms of assistance available. For those looking for easy ways to get over a fear of something like public speaking, a large work or school project, initiating a difficult conversation, or even finances, there are many useful tips based on human psychological research.
How You Look at Fear
Having fear is common to all people and nothing to be ashamed of. When the fear grows and starts to restrict you from the life you dream of, it’s time to take some action. What may seem like a small issue to someone else can appear to be an insurmountable challenge for you. Fear is crafted and developed in the human mind, making our experiences of fear quite unique and personal. There’s a common saying that ‘fear is not real,’ and to a certain extent, this is true because fear exists in the mind.
When considering fears and phobias, it is important to differentiate between different types of fear. In some cases, there is a real physical danger requiring caution and attention. This could be an unsafe area, a fire, traveling in bad weather, or walking barefoot near broken glass. In all these examples, there is a real risk of physical danger. It is not wise to approach dangerous situations without a certain level of healthy fear and caution.
The other type of fear that people experience is not associated with real physical danger. Evaluating the risks of a certain activity is one of the secrets to dealing with fear. Doing something like acting or public speaking may be terrifying to someone who does not like being in front of people, but the danger risk is next to zero.
Chapman University found that the top five fears in America include the fear of public speaking, heights, drowning, blood and needles, and creatures such as bugs and snakes. Most of these are not really things that should warrant fear of any harm, except drowning and dangerous animals.
Tips Tackle Fear to
There are different ways to approach fear, but one of the psychology recommendations is using a four-step strategy. The first step is about identifying your fear. Suppressing your fear or being in denial about it can hinder your progress. Perhaps you have never done something you have dreamed of because there is a hidden and unidentified fear standing in your way.
The next step to overcome fear is to understand your fear. Know what it is all about, what triggers it, what makes it worse or better, and how you typically respond when you’re experiencing this fear. Knowledge is power, and the more you understand the nature of your fear, the closer you are to dealing with it. According to Albert Einstein, with an hour to solve a problem, he was happier spending 55 minutes looking at the actual problem and the remaining 5 minutes on developing the solution.
The third step is to take action to overcome your fears. Now armed with greater knowledge about how your fear works, you can devise new approaches to tackle it. One of these is spending time with people who do not struggle with the same fear so that you can model their behavior. The final step is to take your time, expose yourself more and more, and pace yourself as you overcome your fears.