Creepers and crawlers! Ghosts and ghouls! It’s that time of year when many come to face their fears. Today is Friday the 13th, and with Halloween right around the corner, many of you may be preparing to lock the doors and pull the covers up and over your heads to hide from a fear that’s been haunting you for years.
Feeling frightened or anxious about something is tortuous; your heart races, your throat closes up, and your stomach feels like it’s tied up in knots. Fear is an instinctual response and your body’s way of protecting you from imminent danger. But what if you’re not actually in jeopardy? Sometimes the fear response can be over-reactive or become triggered when you’re not in peril. Usually, due to past trauma, fear can cross over into the realm of phobia and wreak havoc on your nervous system. Phobias keep us from enjoying our lives to the fullest. When a phobia has become so prevalent that you are avoiding activities to avoid confrontation with the possibility of pitfall; it’s time to seek professional help. As a hypnotherapist, I see people in my office every day who are suffering from anxiety brought on by a fear that has bubbled over into the phobia category. With some practical practice and use of hypnotic techniques, you can take on the world with a relaxed body and a calm mind. Here are just a few of the ways to stomp out your fears.
When panic starts, The body begins to take in more oxygen in case it has to fight or run away. By changing your breathing to a slow and deliberate pattern, you can calm your body down very quickly. Practice breathing in through the nose to the count of 7 and breathing out through pursed lips to the count of 11. Do this several times and until you feel your pulse start to slow down and normalize.
Most people can remember the originating event that instilled the fear, but some cannot. If you are one of those, who cannot recall the memory, it can be helpful to revisit the first occurrence through the use of hypnotic regression. Regression is a technique better used in office and with a practiced professional, but if you are familiar with self-hypnosis, you can safely revisit the past on your own.
As a human being, you have a unique ability to change your view from one of self-experience to one of self-observance. By simply closing your eyes and imagining that you are watching yourself from above you can gain a new perspective and see things as they truly are. If you are still having trouble, try to imagine that you are watching yourself on a television screen, and then change the viewing from one of color to one of black and white.
Practice seeing yourself in your mind’s eye interacting with the fear in a calm and controlled way. Begin by closing your eyes and picturing yourself in the panic-inducing situation, then quickly switch scenes to one of a peaceful and relaxing place. Repeat this mental exercise until you feel much more relaxed viewing yourself in the scene that would have formerly caused you distress.
You don’t have to live in fear any longer! You can overcome fear and live a life of confidence. All of these techniques can be used while in the conscious state, but they are much more powerful and lasting when used in the state of hypnosis. By making an appointment with a trained hypnotherapist, you will be able to face your former fear without any panic-inducing symptoms.
Written by Tara Martin CH, Airó Hypnosis