Wednesday, June 19, 2013

What are YOU afraid of?

Today I want to discuss fear. Irrational fears, fears that come from the depths hidden beneath and inside us and fears that are actually something to be concerned about.


Fear is defined as an emotion induced by a perceived threat which causes entities to quickly pull far away from it and usually hide. It is a basic survival mechanism occurring in response to a specific stimulus, such as pain or the threat of danger. In short, fear is the ability to recognize danger leading to an urge to confront it or flee from it (also known as the fight-or-flight response) but in extreme cases of fear (horror and terror) a freeze or paralysis response is possible
Most fear is irrational now-a-days the need for fight or flight is no longer required as much as it has been in the past. Most fears are lingering shadows in our mind, actually hurting us, rather than helping us.

People fear many things; death, the unknown, ghosts, spiders, bugs, the dark, water, enclosed spaces, failure, abandonment, being left behind, needles, rejections, doctors, height, clowns and many many more.

Did you know you can even be conditioned to fear things? Or that the absence of fear is almost as bad as fear itself.

Fear can be triggered by traumas in our past or a legitimate threat; fear can stop you from walking into a dangerous situation or stop you from taking a chance that may be good for you.

Afraid, scared, dread, apprehension, frightened, uneasy… all great words for fear

There are five basic types of fear that all other fear is created from.



Extinction- fear of death or ceasing to exist…That feeling most people get when looking down from the top of a cliff or thinking about getting old.


Mutilation- fear of losing a body part or having your body invaded or having a part of your body not work right. This is where one sees fear of things like animals and bugs.


Separation- fear of rejection, abandonment, being not wanted or not respected.


Loss of Autonomy- fear of being paralyzed, restricted, over whelmed, trapped or even smothered, whether physically , mentally or socially.



Ego-death- fear of humiliation, shame and disapproval. You know things that will lose you love and worthiness.


Those fears can be sorted into three additional categories:

External Fear

Usually caused by a specific event in your past. This is when someone fears something specific like driving, bugs or black cats crossing their path. It is only triggered under specific instances when you encounter what it is that frightens you. Because of the trigger, these fears are easily recognized.

Most of these fears are caused by some traumatic event in the past. For instance, if you got bit by a dog at a young age, you might develop a phobia about them. Your experience taught you to avoid them.

Internal Fear

Like external fears, these fears are also triggered by events outside of you. However, internal fears are not specific to any circumstance and are due to internal emotions. This can make these fears difficult to recognize. Internal fears manifest as fear of failure, fear of success, fear of rejection, lack of self worth and doubt.

Subconscious Fear

Other fears are so internal to use that we develop beliefs around them. Subconscious fear is similar to internal fears except subconscious fears are believed to be a part of who we really are. Subconscious fears develop into limiting beliefs. An example of a limiting belief would be if you think you’ll never find a job you like because every job you’ve ever had was terrible. Limiting beliefs usually try to convince you that you’re not good enough to do something.


I am afraid of quite a few things. I have been afraid of the dark since I was a little girl. I am afraid of being abandoned, of being cheated on, ghosts, being alone and of rejection. I am afraid of spiders unless they are easily squished and disposed of.

I have gotten over fears. I used to be afraid of needles and pain. Not so much anymore. When my first daughter was born I got poked by so many needles now I don’t give a shit and actually enjoy watching them take my blood. And after having my daughter without the epidural now pain doesn’t bother me as much.

Once upon a time I was scared of speaking in front of people and being on stage. However once I realized I could pretend to be someone else, someone awesome, I got over that and now I don’t have to pretend because I am awesome. Lol

Confronting your fears in the only way to face them…Some fears are just too scary. I am afraid of the dark. I have tried so many times to confront that fear. I had left my room at night after someone has turned off all the lights in the living room. Usually we have a night light or something in there. I stand in the hall, at the entrance, peering into the blackness and I cannot force myself to take another step. My heart races, I feel light headed, anxious and nervous. I scuttled either a) to the hallway light or b) back to my safe and well lit room. I know there isn’t anything out there, but for some reason I can’t shake that there MIGHT be.

So…think about it and answer this question…. What are you afraid of? What fears have you over come?

Oh and for some humor…Here are some weird/interesting fears…Do you have them?

Acerophobia- Fear of sourness (No sour patch kids for you)

Arachibutyrophobia- Fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of the mouth. ( Two words: Mr. Ed)

Bogyphobia- Fear of bogeys or the bogeyman.

Blennophobia- Fear of slime.

Chronomentrophobia- Fear of clocks.

Coulrophobia- fear of clowns

Disposophobia- fear of throwing things away. (Have you ever WATCHED Hoarders?)

Dutchphobia- Fear of the Dutch.

Ergophobia- fear of working (I have this!!!)

Eosophobia- Fear of dawn or daylight. (Vampires must have this)

Genuphobia- Fear of knees.

Helminthophobia- Fear of being infested with worms. (Like Polonius)

Ithyphallophobia- Fear of seeing, thinking about or having an erect penis. (I know a few people who have this)

Kathisophobia- Fear of sitting down.

Lutraphobia- Fear of otters.

Nyctophobia- Fear of the dark or of night. (I have this)
Omphalophobia- Fear of belly buttons.

Pupaphobia - Fear of puppets. (Puppets ARE creep)

Samhainophobia: Fear of Halloween.

Sciophobia - Fear of shadows.

Textophobia- Fear of certain fabrics.

Wiccaphobia: Fear of witches and witchcraft ( I most certainly do NOT have this)

Xyrophobia-Fear of razors.

Zeusophobia- Fear of God or gods. (Yeah well if all Gods are like the Greek Gods you SHOULD be afraid)



References:

Brain Snacks

3 Types of Fear
Psychology Today
Phobia List


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