Phobias are considered an irrational fear. This alarming feeling presents itself at times of emotional distress when we feel weakest.
For some, it’s the sight of a snake or a spider, and for others, public speaking or heights. Regardless of what anyone’s fear is, we all have them. The fear is hidden inside of us waiting to develop its own tics and reactions.
Fears reflect in some way who we are and what we have been exposed to. Most of what we are afraid of is undeserving of the pedestal we have put it on.
For my mom, her greatest fear is spiders. This is despite the fact that she has lived in Western Michigan her entire life, where the population of life-threatening spiders is less than the annual crime rate.
Her priority when leaving the house, however, is not locking the door or making it to her car safely. It’s to avoid the daddy longlegs on the steps. She marks this as her fear – the harmless and the irrational.
The reality of fear is not only normal, but it’s beneficial. It allows us to think critically and protects us when in circumstances where our brain and our body don’t always react simultaneously.
So the question begs, how do we rationalize our fears? The best way to rationalize is to realize that we are in complete control. No one expects people to overcome their fear of public speaking or large crowds, but with control they can get comfortable with who they are.
Feeling nervous before giving that big speech in front of class is normal. It is common, and even okay to have clammy hands or speak faster than usual and to even forget what to say.
It is important to understand that when it comes to fear, we all feel it, just in a different way. Do not let feelings develop their own characteristics, and never give them the power to take away a person’s voice or call to action.
In this new school year, we need to find chances to embrace fears, to be willing to fight back.
We need to remind ourselves of why our heart beats and why being nervous is worth the self-gratitude we give ourselves when it’s finished. In the end our personal growth is what counts and taking steps toward breaking down our fears is where the magic begins.
Instead of running away from things, run toward them.
Then watch them try to catch up.
By Stephanie Kennert – Little Tasks