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How do I Overcome Fear?

By Bethany Keene
Updated May 17, 2024
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Many people find themselves plagued by what they believe to be irrational fears. There are many different ways to overcome fear, and many techniques for you to try. It will likely take patience and persistence to fully overcome fears, but it will be worth it in the end. One of the best ways to overcome fear is to begin trying to desensitize yourself to the fear.

This may seem extremely difficult at first, as becoming desensitized to a fear requires you to really face it. It may be helpful to try to analyze your fear, and what may have happened in your life to first cause you to become fearful. Clearly identifying your fear, and the root cause if possible, is the first step to putting it behind you. Many fears are tied to past events in life, and you may not even realize it without some self-examination.

Once you have analyzed the cause of your fear, it is time to face the fear. It will probably take more than one instance of facing the fear to truly overcome fear, but it will most likely get easier over time. For example, if you are afraid of swimming in a pool, you might begin by standing in the shallow end of the pool, or even just hanging your feet off the side. Every day, try to go a little deeper into the water. Soon, it won't seem so scary.

Another way to overcome fear is to train your brain to stop it in its tracks. Some people find success by speaking out loud or to themselves when they feel fear or anxiety starting. They might say "Stop!" or try to logically convince themselves that there is no reason to be afraid, that they are overreacting or taking an unrealistic perspective of the situation. Taking deep breaths and trying to consciously relax individual muscles in the body is another method that can have two benefits: it can provide relaxation to the body, as well as redirecting the thoughts away from the object of fear. In addition, meditation might be another option for overcoming fears.

Of course, sometimes it is simply not possible to overcome fear on your own. If fears begin to interrupt your everyday life, it may be necessary to seek counseling or therapy, where a trained psychologist will help you get to the root of your fears. He or she will also be able to give you techniques specific to your particular fears, and will be able to help you along the way.

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