Supporting and Clearing Phobias

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Understanding Phobias

A phobia is an irrational and persistent fear of something. It is a type of anxiety disorder. It is often overwhelming and a debilitating fear of an object, place, situation or person.

If a phobia becomes more complex and severe, it can often involve someone readjusting their whole life to avoid coming into contact with the very thing they are so afraid of.

With a generalised anxiety disorder, there is a baseline fear experienced in an individual all the time. Whereas a specific phobia can have a real significant impact on a person’s ability to operate in the world due to the heightened emotions when triggered.
Therefore, it is fair to say that a phobia is more heightened than a fear. A person will have an exaggerated or unrealistic sense of danger about a situation or object which is out of their control as it is triggered through the subconscious mind.

Phobia Symptoms

Phobias can vary in how they present in an individual. A person may not experience any symptoms until they are confronted with their phobia. On the other hand, even thinking or imagining the phobia can make a person feel anxious and on guard – which is termed anticipatory anxiety. 

Here is a list of the typical symptoms a person can experience with a phobia:

  • Cold hands and feet
  • Digestive Issues (e.g. Stomach pain) 
  • Dizziness and Weakness
  • Excessive sweating
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Palpitations
  • Panic attack
  • Shortness of breath
  • Tachycardia 
  • Tics,  Restless leg syndrome, Shaking

If the phobia is more complex, for example agoraphobia (the fear of being in situations where you can’t escape), it will impact your everyday life as most scenarios are an opportunity to be triggered. 

 

Types of Phobias

Phobias can be formed around a certain object, person, animal, situation or activity. More simple or specific phobias centre around one specific element. They can develop in childhood or adolescence and can become less severe as you get older. 

Here is a list of common phobias that are specific in nature: 

  • Animal Phobias: Fear of spiders, fear of snakes, fear of rats
  • Environment Phobias: Fear of heights, fear of water, fear of germs
  • Event Phobias: Fear of the dentist, Fear of flying, Fear of injections

More complex phobias have the potential to be more impactful on a person’s life. They often develop during adulthood and are associated with deep-rooted fear(s) or anxiety around a particular situation or circumstance. This often tends to be the case if a person has experienced several traumatic events in their life where they are then compounded onto each other. 

The two most common complex phobias would be agoraphobia and social phobia. 

Agoraphobia can be seen as the fear of open spaces but when you delve in deeper it is more about being in a place or situation where escaping may be difficult if they have a panic attack. As you can see there is more depth, context and meaning associated with complex phobias. The nature of this phobia means a person will experience anxiety in situations where they are alone, in a crowded place or travelling on public transport. 

Social Phobia (Social Anxiety Disorder) is focused on being anxious in social situations. This would entail speaking to other people, a fear of embarrassing yourself and being humiliated in public. In some cases, it will even prevent a person from carrying out everyday activities such as eating out.  

Phobia, Traumatisation and the Subconscious Mind

One of the main causes of phobias is traumatisation. Trauma is a life experience that involves a threat to our survival in the face of helplessness. A traumatic event gets stored in our subconscious mind along with the meaning of the event in order to protect us from experiencing that again – it’s a survival mechanism.

It is the meaning of the event along with the context of memory that causes a phobia to develop. For example, if you have several traumatic events and in each of these events there is a specific object, person, location, situation involved; all these traumatic experiences will be compounded against that specific element.

The interesting thing is we use our conscious mind about 5% of the time and the subconscious mind is running 95% of the conversation in the background. Therefore, what we hold in our subconscious minds has a real significant impact on how we think and feel day-to-day.

All of our fears, negative belief systems are all held in our subconscious mind. So unless we shift the conversation subconsciously and clear traumatic experiences from our subconscious mind we won’t be able to impact phobias.

An interesting fact with traumatisation is that trauma begets trauma. This means once you have experienced traumatic life experiences, you are more susceptible to being traumatised again. These traumas compounded together can lead to phobias being developed if they are anchored around a specific object or environment.
Also with traumatisation. you don’t have to experience an event to be traumatised, it can happen vicariously. Through your imagination, you can become traumatised based on what you see on television, what you hear in a story, based on something you see but don’t necessarily go through yourself.

The Emotional Impact of Phobias

If you have a phobia the emotions that they can generate extend far and beyond the obvious immediate fear and stress response experienced when confronted with the phobia. Let’s take a look at the range of different emotions you can experience and the potential implications of them.

Anxiety (Fear of the future)

After developing a phobia or experiencing something traumatic, this experience is now stored in your subconscious mind. If you subconscious recognise similarities in your environment you will automatically be triggered. You are now on guard for a potential threat and this can develop into anxiety if this triggering occurs regularly.
So depending on the phobia and the triggers, this can significantly impact your life by stopping you from carrying out normal activities, meeting certain people and provide challenges in a working environment.
As a result, a phobia can impact all areas of your life and hinder your ability to live life to its fullest.

Loneliness

Having a certain phobia can make you feel isolated, unique (different to others) and alone, especially if other people around you don’t understand you. This can lead to loneliness and wanting to be alone as you feel safer in this environment. This then impacts relationships and can make a person reclusive and depressed.

Shame / Humiliation

This is one of the emotions that can be overlooked but can have a major impact on a person’s self-image and the image they feel others have of them. If you have a phobia over something that is considered something you shouldn’t be afraid of, it can leave a person feeling awkward and embarrassed.
For example, a fear of open spaces or even animals is the source of phobia for many people. It’s often the reaction people experience when confronted with their phobia which can lead them to feel humiliated and even shame which is a low vibration emotion for the human body.
This only reinforces the fear and anxiety a person feels.

Depressed / Helpless

Often when phobia become debilitating to your life, work relationships and your general state of wellbeing, it can cause an individual to become depressed and feel helpless. This is often characterised by the fact that phobias are triggered by the subconscious mind and will most often overwrite the conscious mind.
Also, when we have tried several therapies or avenues to try and combat the phobia but to no avail, it can leave a person feeling like there is no way of change this pattern causing them to lose hope.

Over-vigiliant / Out of control

Phobias can be irrational and/or excessive, but as mentioned before they are difficult to control. As a result, it can cause a person to become over-vigilant, which can result in excessive thinking. It can also a person to feel out of control causing them to dwell on their phobia and how to prevent coming into contact with it.

Clearing Phobias through EFT and Matrix Reimprinting

Phobias need to be addressed at a subconscious level if a person wishes to be truly free of their phobia. The body and mind need to be able to disconnect the trigger with the emotional response at a deeper level for a person to break free of this pattern.

To do this, often the memories where this phobia was developed needed to be identified and cleared safely and effectively from the subconscious mind. Just talking about it, won’t get true resolution, as there are deeper mechanisms at play that are ultimately designed to protect you.

People often say, “I have no idea or recollection of where comes from?” The reason why is because the mind puts amnesia around these memories to protect the conscious mind from experiencing these traumatic memories again in the present moment.

However, the subconscious mind has full access to these memories and if it recognises a similar event to the traumatic one, it will trigger the amygdala into releasing stress responses to help us deal with a potential threat.

This is where EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) and Matrix Reimprinting are powerful tools to help identify where this phobia comes from and also to clear the trauma from the subconscious mind and reprint a new empowering memory in its place.

If the phobia is anchored around one specific memory when this is cleared the phobia will fall apart because there is nothing for it to anchor itself against. Typically, there tends to be one than one memory that is related to a phobia whether it is specific or more complex in nature.

By working away at these memories, a person feels safer, comfortable around the thought of the phobia and even confront the phobia itself with no negative thoughts or associations.

If you are suffering from a phobia or a simply aware that you have a phobia wish to clear it, then EFT and Matrix Reimprinting are very safe and effective tools to do this.

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