Wikipedia definition of Fear is a feeling induced by perceived danger or threat , which causes a change in metabolic and organ functions and ultimately a change in behavior, such as fleeing, hiding, or freezing from perceived traumatic events. Fear in human beings may occur in response to a specific stimulus occurring in the present, or in anticipation or expectation of a future threat perceived as a risk to body or life.
Fear, however is a vital response to physical and emotional danger — if we didn’t feel it, we couldn’t protect ourselves from legitimate threats.
Fear can be learned by experiencing or watching a frightening traumatic accident or a personal experience with someone close maybe family or friend. Children develop fears from parents for example, when parents make statements like “If you don’t behave boogie man will take you”. Or children are frightened of darkness with statements like “ghost will be there” There are many common phobias like fear of cockroaches, spiders, heights, examinations, failure, dark spaces, public speaking etc with fear of death and future quite in the forefront.
Unrecognized and unaccepted fears, buried deep within the psyche, sabotage children’s creativity, self-esteem and relationships.
Some of the basic childhood fears which get carried into adulthood are:-
- Fear of rejection and abandonment
• Fear of being misunderstood
• Fear of physical/sexual abuse
• Fear of parental expectations
Parents too pass their fears of survival, not earning enough money, or not being able to support their family to their children. This in turn effects the child’s relationship with money as they grow up. All these fears give birth to fear of being inadequate, insignificant, unloved, unwanted, disrespected, abused, ridiculed, ignored, or put down.
The insecurity developed from fears create panic and a feeling of victimhood inside children and adults alike.
Cognitive behavioural therapy addresses these issues by citing examples and practical lessons to change the thought process. Face the fear to overcome the fear of fear calls for strength which is possible through counselling sessions and building ones confidence levels.
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