3 Steps To Create a Phobia

3 Steps To Create a Phobia

 

A phobia is an overwhelming and debilitating fear of a stimulus. This stimulus can be an object, environment, situation, food, animal, or well…..anything.

 

Anxiety induced by fear is different to a phobia. Someone with social anxiety may still attend a party but a social phobic wont go anywhere near a social gatherings.A phobia is more limiting then anxiety.

 

A phobia is an exaggerated or unrealistic sense of danger about the stimulus. Here is a very short list of phobias

  • Amathophobia- Fear of dust
  • Carnophobia- Fear of meat
  • Chronomentrophobia- Fear of clocks
  • Cleithrophobia – Fear of being trapped
  • Dystychiphobia- Fear of accidents
  • Electrophobia- Fear of electricity
  • Heliophobia- Fear of the sun
  • Koumpounophobia – Fear of buttons
  • Lilapsophobia- Fear of tornadoes and hurricanes
  • Myctophobia- Fear of darkness
  • Pteromerhanophobia- Fear of flying
  • Triskaidekaphobia- Fear of the number 13
  • Xanthophobia – Fear of the colour yellow

 

 

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Hot To Create a Phobia Step 1 Overload the Sensory Data

 

Phobias are created when the Amygdalathe part of our brain responsible for controlling our emotions, emotional behavior, and motivation and our fight, flight and freeze mode (which is activated when we are faced with danger.) is overloaded by sensory data

 

When we are faced with a danger our experiences are passed through the Amygdala. All the sensory data of the experiences; sounds, smells, sights , etc is interpreted by our brain, which asks – am I in danger?

 

Once the context of the sensory data is established, we either realise that we are safe; the original sensory data was distorted or we react to the threat by activating our flight, fight or freeze response.

 

Something that initially scares you can be forgotten, as we logically work out that the stimulus is no longer a threat. But when  the sensory data is overloaded it can become trapped in the Amygdala, rather then becoming a forgotten memory.

 

If the experience is trapped our brain cant make sense of it and we rerun the phobic movie, feeling only the associated emotions – fear and anxiety, rather then using logic to name and shame the experience.

 

 

 

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How to Create a Phobia Step 2 Replay the Phobic Experience

 

We feel fear and detect threats on a daily basis. Once the threat has passed we, in most cases, forget about it – it becomes a forgotten memory

 

When  the sensory data is overloaded it is trapped in the Amygdala. Once trapped we often rethink about the phobic incident and replay this often like a movie in our minds eye.

 

The more we relay this negative experience the stronger the associated emotions (fear and anxiety) become, the stronger the associated emotions, the more we replay the negative experience, creating a negative cycle which becomes a phobia.

 

 

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How to Create a Phobia Step 3 Creating a Phobic Frame of Reference

 

A phobic reaction takes all the control away from you.

 

Your negative response to the stimulus becomes your frame of reference. You think of stimulus and your frame of reference is a phobic response.

 

The worst part is that the phobic response can grow into different parts of your life.

 

A client of mine told me about how her phobia of people started and grew out of control. The client on a night took a short cut home. While walking throughout the back streets she was mugged and threatened.

The shock of this unexpected mugging create massive anxiety. She was initially able to go out but she became fearful of back streets and dark alleys. This soon grew into a fear of streets with no visible people on them.

The phobia grew worse over the next few weeks with the client didn’t even want to leave the safety of her house, encase she found herself in a similar situation.

 

Her mind wanting to keep her safe, would fire the phobia response to any situation she associated to the danger.  The original danger was a back street ally, this was associated to empty streets, which was then associated to streets, which was then associated to going outside.

 

 

Chris Delaney NLP Life Coach, Hypnotherapist and Career Advisor is available for booking for One to One Private Sessions, Group Training Sessions and Public Speaking Events

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Chris Delaney is also a published author “The 73 Rules of Influencing the Interview – using Psychology, NLP and Hypnotic Persuasion Techniques”

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Chris Delaney NLP Life Coach, Hypnotherapist and Career Advisor is available for booking for One to One Private Sessions, Group Training Sessions and Public Speaking Events

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