DSC00106Fear is an emotion that most if not all of us deal with from time to time, and we seem to think that fear is only a negative emotion. I think that is misleading. Fear can be good for all of us if we only listen to what that fear is telling us. If we are fearing something that might be dangerous, then we can make sure to steer clear of that danger.

In other circumstances fear can be damaging if left uncontrolled. Fear of small spaces, crowds, bugs, and heights are just a few phobias that can hinder us from having a full and enjoyable life. Certain phobias can be obstacles that keep us from enjoying activities with our friends and relatives, and they can cause us to feel and be left out of fun activities. The question is, how do we overcome these fears and obstacles?

For me, I feel the way to overcoming our phobias and fears is to confront them. Start in a controlled environment where you can slowly face whatever you are afraid of. Keep pushing yourself to go farther and challenge your fear more and more each time. When I was growing up, I had a fear of roller coasters. It took some time for me to overcome this fear but eventually I was hooked and was looking for bigger and more extreme coasters every chance I had. The way I challenged myself was to find small coaster-like rides at amusement parks and ride them a couple of times until I realized there wasn’t anything to be afraid of. Then I went on and made myself ride larger roller coasters a few times, then kept going until I was enjoying these rides. I no longer had to wait for my friends to go on these rides and could now go on the rides with them.

I still have other phobias to overcome such as a fear of spiders, but I will take these irrational fears one at a time until they are no more. I challenge everyone to push themselves to overcome one of their fears by the end of summer. Pick one that you think would be the easiest to defeat then set a deadline on a calendar for you to achieve this goal. This way you have set an actual day that you have to complete this goal, and you will be less likely to keep pushing your challenge off or chicken out of it completely.

Good luck and keep me posted on how your challenge is going.


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