• melaniemeik

What are you afraid of?

Things that go bump in the night? Flying, heights, spiders, bananas, cotton wool? The list of people's fears and phobias is extensive.

Is it a fear or a phobia? A fear is a state of mind, it can be described by the acronym FEAR - Future Events Appearing Real. A phobia often creates a physical reaction in the body in response to the more extreme fear of something, sweaty palms, a racing heart beat, trembling, a dry mouth.

Did you know we are only born with 2 fears? A fear of falling and a fear of loud noises. A study by Gibson and Walk in 1960 called the Visual Cliff studied babies between the age of 6 and 4 months old and their depth perception. For many mammals and animals a fear of falling is a necessary survival instinct. In this study the researchers placed the infants on a plexiglass platform to see how many would actually step or crawl over the "Visual Cliff" Most of the subjects in the experiment which included children and animals did not.

Seth Norrholm a translational neuroscientist at Emory University explains

"When you hear loud sounds, you most likely will react with a fight of flight response, loud noises typically mean startling. That brain circuitry is innate, a response that we have that signals something dangerous may be around the corner"

Many childhood phobias are short lived and disappear without any treatment. Adult phobias which often stem from childhood that didn't move on their own are often harder to shift, but in most cases just one hypnotherapy session can help to cure the phobia once and for all.

So if we are only born with 2 fears where do our fears of bananas, cotton wool, needles, the dark, dogs, flying and spiders to name but a few come from?

Often it is learned behaviour, as a child at 5 you walk in the kitchen to see your Mum having what you understand to be a life threatening situation, she is shaking, crying and screaming, and what is causing this distress - a spider in the middle of the floor!

Fears and phobias can also come from past experiences, a one time single experience that our subconscious has deemed in maybe only a few minutes was "life threatening" (although in most cases was not). That instinctive and pre programmed reptilian brain initiates the fight or flight mode and we then lock in that item, person or .experience as being something that we will be forever afraid of. creating a faulty programme, that then continues to run throughout our lifetime being triggered until the programme is updated.

Many of us have a fear of things that can be holding us back in life, a fear of public speaking, a fear of failure, a fear of rejection, a fear of a meeting.

Many people have fears that are completely out of proportion with the actual danger that may be in turn associated. We are often also aware of the feelings of panic, anxiety or discomfort that these fears bring with them and we are experts at bringing those feelings on.

If we associate with these fears we project ourselves into the situation, feeling it as though it is already happening just by thinking about it (Future Events Appearing Real) and the anxiety, panic and discomfort are present even though the situation hasn't even happened yet.

Most fears like most psychosomatic problems come from the past. The glorious thing about hypnotherapy is that we can change our perception to past events, we can re frame the way that we think about them and free ourselves from the fear or phobia. Fears are a little more deep rooted in our past and have evolved in our minds over the years so take a little longer to work through but usually 2-3 sessions in enough to release you from your fears and project you forward in life!

Call me for a free consultation to discuss removing your fears or phobias.

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