How to overcome fear: techniques and practical advice from psychologists
We’re all afraid of something. But we also know that fear has large eyes and can actually be dealt with much faster and easier than we think. The most popular advice of psychologists to get rid of fear is to accept it and live: do what you are afraid, go where you are afraid, etc. But in practice it is not always possible and not applicable to every fear.
We offer you a few more proven psychological techniques, how to cope with fears – choose the one that suits you more or combine several.
Step-by-step technique No. 1
Step 1: realize – Yes, I’m afraid.
Admit it. Thus we derive fear from the subconscious, irrational feeling – in consciousness. Rationalize it. And it already at this stage will seem to you not so frightening.
Step 2: specify and detail what I’m afraid of.
It may turn out that everything is much easier than you think. For example, you are afraid of public speaking not because you are afraid of the public, but because you are afraid of the disapproval of specific individuals or are not sure that you know your report thoroughly.
Step 3: bring the situation to the point of absurdity.
In the literal sense of the word. To think that could happen the worst in this situation and imagine it in all its glory. Surprisingly, in this way, half the fear will simply dissolve.
Imagine that your fear lives somewhere in your body. Where? Like my stomach. Put one hand on the place that bothers you – where this fear lives. And the second – to the place that feels great. And we focus our attention alternately on one area and then on another. We change the focus of attention until the feeling is aligned in one common – «I feel good everywhere.» So you can work not only with fear, but also with resentment, jealousy and even physical pain.
Visualize your fear. Literally scroll mentally frame-by-frame «film», what happens when realized what you are afraid of and what you do – where you go, what you feel, how you react. Presented «mini-movies» in my head for 10 minutes – and mentally burned this film. The fear will either disappear completely or become much less intense.
Step 1. Split your fear into smaller components
Step 2. Answer the question: what will you get if you cope with it
Step 3. Start to overcome the effort of will at first the simplest fear, then gradually move to the complex.
Very simple: just take it and do it. Make a decision – and act, no matter what. This works especially well if you know what the «reward» will be for doing what you fear.
The easiest and fastest way: to calm down – a few times you need to take a deep breath and exhale. In this case, it would be good to hold your breath on the inhale and exhale as long as possible.
A method of relaxation according to Jacobson
It helps to get rid not only of fears, but also of tension and fatigue. Especially before bed. It consists of a consistent tension and relaxation of all the muscles of the body – from the face, then the neck, forearms, hands – and ending with the feet. Thus, you need to «walk» all over the body from top to bottom and Vice versa. The essence of the method is that after the tension, the muscle tends to relax, and with physical relaxation in the body there is a process of emotional relaxation and calm.