10 Simple Ways to Overcome Your Phobia
Phobias limit your life.
People wrongly believe a phobia is for life. But the opposite is true, as a phobia can be overcome easily. Here are 10 simple ways to over the phobia that is limiting your life
When a phobic thinks of the stimulus that creates their fear, their phobic reaction, the phobic will see the stimulus as a movie in their minds eye. This image is powerful because the phobic see’s the image from their own eyes. This associated perspective tricks the mind into believing that it is seeing the stimulus for real, creating anxiety and fear.
By training the mind to distort this image you wil change the automated reaction to the stimulus.
Move the Movie Away – ask anyone with a real fear, how they know they have a fear? They will also say that they just know that even the thought of the fear (spiders as an example) will make them terrified. When people think about their fear they have to visualise it in their minds, the picture is often big, bright and colourful. When phobic will see the fear from their own eyes in their minds visualisation (they won’t picture themselves looking at a spider – they will see the spider from their own eyes) now here’s the good bit, get your phobic picture and move it away, so you can see yourself in the phobic situation. More the image further and further away from your mind’s eye, until it’s the size of a post card, then a stamp and then until it’s a dot on the horizon. When you do this how do you feel now? Less anxious?
Pause the Horror Movie – for people with real phobias there picture will be more like a movie, not only will they see the phobia from their own eyes they will actually relive the whole experience as if they are there again. In this case what you need to do, as you move the giant picture away from your minds eye, is, once the picture has been shrunk down so you can see the sides of the image (ie it’s not right in front of you) you need to bring out your magic remote control and pause the movie, with the moving image paused so anxiety will be much less.
Fade the Colour – with both the stilled image or movie of your phobia, most phobic’s will say they are move freighted when the image is in colour. As you are moving the image away from your minds eye, let the colour drain from the picture so the image becomes black and white. This is a very easy and effective technique to reduce your phobic response.
Play The Benny Hill Theme Tune – keeping using the 4 techniques above over and over again, the more you use them the less intense your phobic reaction will be to the same image. On your 4th or 5th reply of this movie that you will pause, turn black and white and move away from your mind making it smaller and smaller, add the upbeat Benny hill theme tune. For me even thinking about this music makes me smile, as you play when you’re thinking about your phobia you can’t help but laugh, can you? now the brain is starting to associate laughter to your phobia rather the fear or anxiety.
Add Mickey Mouse to Your Movie. as you movie the image away from your mind eyes, so you can see yourself in the image, turn the people including yourself into cartoon characters, you can use Mickey mouse or just exaggerate your features so you become more of a caricature of yourself. At this point with the cartoon version of you and the Benny hill theme music, you will be laughing your cartoon socks off.
Rewind the Video – once you have messed around with the submodalities of your internal image, you will find it hard to remember your old phobic response, won’t you? now imagine you were in a cinema, and see on the screen in front of you the you before your old phobic response (this is a safe place before you were phobic) step out of your body and float back to the project booth, so you can watch yourself watching a movie of you when you were phobic. Press play and watch the you watching the movie. at the end of the movie (again when you are in a safe place after the phobic incident) float backdown, pass over yourself and step into the screen so you can see the world from the eyes of the you in the movie. this time rewind the film really fast (1-5 seconds) and see the phobic incident going in reverse, hear people speak backwards and see people walk backwards – but do this very quickly. At the beginning of the movie, pause it and float back into your seat. Try and play the old movie, is it getting harder to see?
A Place in Nature – with the phobia nearly gone, I want you to think about somewhere relaxing like a beach or a place in nature. Imagine you are there now, see what you can see, hear what you can hear and start to relax. Start to feel so very relax; notice how relaxed you are feeling in this wonderful relaxing place. Take these feelings and walk towards a bridge, as you cross the bring these feelings of relaxation with you as you walk towards your phobia (a spider etc) notice how nice it feels to feel relaxed when you’re in this now nice and controlled situation, you might even start to feel proud of yourself as you feel relaxed in this situation.
Negative List – write down a massive list, of everything your phobia is stopping you doing. Don’t just record the obvious (fear of flights – can’t go aboard) record how this is effecting your life, your relationship, your health, etc. Take each list item in turn and play a movie of this event how you hate being stuck in the UK when friends and family are going on holiday, how you always argue with your partner who wants a sunny summer holiday not a UK rainy weekend in Blackpool. You will only change once you are sick of feeling this way. So start your list now.
Picture you at Your Best – imagine you have gotten over your phobia, how will this change your life for the best? What will you being doing? Where are you? how do you feel? what do others say to you? What changes have you and other noticed? Really think about all the positive things that will happen, and feel that desire now to start to want to change, which means you need to start using these 10 techniques.
Practice, practice and practice – as with any skill you need to practice these techniques. Each night go through these steps until your phobia has vanished forever and start to enjoy your new life, enjoy how in control you feel and enjoy how much you are starting to enjoy life to its fullest.
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
Other People Who Read This Article Also Read:
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- Google Brain Therapy
- The Neuroscience of Phobias
- Mindfulness, NLP and Hypnosis
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