Types of Fear -
How to Conquer Fear & Anxiety

There are many types of fear and anxiety.

They all feel scary.

Use these simple tips to overcome both common and uncommon fears and reduce the stress in your life.

People find ways and reasons to be afraid of almost everything.

Theses fears range from the serious to the silly – except that it never feels silly if we’re the one who is frightened.

Types of Fear

Some of the most common fears include:

Flying phobia
Fear of heights
Fear of public speaking
Fear of intimacy
Fear of failure
Fear of success
Fear of death
Fear of rejection
Fear of spiders
Fear of driving
Fear of needles
Fear of abandonment
Fear of clowns
Fear of water
Fear of god
Fear of snakes
Fear of being alone
Fear of falling


Some additional types of fear are:

Fear of change
Fear of dentist
Fear of germs
Fear of dogs
Fear of cats
Fear of money

Less common but still frightening fears are:

Fear of long words
Fear of midgets
Fear of Friday the 13th
Fear of crowds
Fear of people
Fear of technology
Fear of bridges
Fear of self
Fear of hair
Fear of engulfment
Fear of vomiting
Fear of stupid people
Fear of selling
Fear of music
Fear hospitals
Fear of night
Fear of losing money
Fear of darkness
Fear of belly buttons
Mortgage fears
Fear of open spaces
Fear of phone
Fear of thunder
Fear of itching
Fear of missing out
Bird flu fears
Fear of aging
Fear of risk taking

These fears can range in intensity from mild anxiety to complete terror.

As you can see, our fears cover almost every phase of life, mental, emotional, physical, even spiritual.

Most of us, if not all of us, recognize we have one or more of these fears...
if we’re really honest with ourselves. Overcoming our fears gives enormous stress relief. So the question becomes...

How to Conquer Fear and Anxiety

Sometimes people find it helpful to work with a trained counselor or therapist. They experience valuable relief in reaching out to a trained professional who can help them better understand and overcome their fears. While this is sometimes essential, it isn’t always necessary.

To overcome many types of fear, it is helpful to understand the basic mechanism of fear that applies in virtually all cases.

Fear is an emotion. It’s an experience that we have. There is a mental part, and there is a physical part. Sometimes there is a behavioral part. Let’s look at these three aspects separately.

The Mental Part of Fear

  • Learn How to Conquer Fear by Staying in the Present Moment

    The mental part of fear is the specifics of the situation. It’s the story that we’re telling.

    The mental part of fear always involves a projection into the future. It’s our reaction to something we think might happen that we don’t want. Or it’s our reaction to something we think will not happen that we do want.

    So one way we can learn how to conquer fear is to get grounded in the present. Instead of imagining all the things which could go wrong, simply accept what is, right now.

    Right now we have everything we need. When we put our attention on the here and now, the mental part of fear evaporates.
  • Learn How to Conquer Fear with Acceptance

    As much as our egos would like to think we are in control of our lives… it’s a lie.

    We can not control our heart beat, our breathing, or whether the sun will rise tomorrow. We certainly can not control the stock market, our employer, spouse or children.

    Our thoughts and actions certainly do influence the outcomes and events in our lives. Hard work, diligence, honesty, kindness, compassion and positive mental attitudes are certainly worthwhile. They can enhance our life and the lives of those around us. But, they do not enable us to control. In this experience of life we simply have to do our best and then hope for the best.

    The mental part of fear is a kind of worry. It uses our time and energy uselessly. When we fully realize the futility of this worry habit we can make other choices.

    We can stop feeding the fear... because we realize that it does not help. It does not help us to be in control. It does not help us to get what we think we want. It wastes our time and energy.

    The future is not knowable or controllable.
    Practicing acceptance neutralizes the mental part of fear.

The Physical Part of Fear

To deal with the physical part of fear, get out of the story line. Simply allow your attention to be with the physical sensations.

You will find that underlying every fear are one or more physical sensations in the body. These physical sensations may include:

  • a queasy stomach,
  • rapid heart beat,
  • shallow rapid breathing,
  • muscle tension,
  • increased perspiration,
  • shaking,
  • or thirst.

Just by paying attention to those physical sensations without a story or a label allows the sensations to dissipate and eventually disappear. When that happens, the fear goes as well.

Sometimes the sensations dissipate quickly, sometimes slowly. Or it can go in waves. Eventually the sensations do go when we don’t resist them or label them and simply allow them to be experienced.

The Behavior Part of Fear

Sometimes fear is telling us something valid!

Sometimes fear is telling us we need to take action or make a change in some part of our life.

An analogy would be a person having a picnic on the railroad tracks. He hears a train whistle in the distance and starts to feel some anxiety. Then the whistle gets louder and he sees the train approaching. Now he is really feeling terror. He needs to take action. He needs to move. And if he can not move, then he needs help.

If you are feeling fear, and you think that you might need to take action, but do not know how then consider getting online counseling. Often a good online therapist can see your situation in a broader context and help you evaluate and make the necessary changes in your life.

Additional Tools

Prayer
Prayer is helpful in overcoming all types of fear. Faith and trust in God are perfect antidotes to this very common human problem. It is a solution which helps us find serenity, peace and acceptance.

Online Counseling Helps Us Overcome Many Types of Fear
Fear can be very stressful and isolating. Perhaps in the past you have been afraid or embarrassed to reach out and get help. With the growth of the internet, it is easier and less expensive than ever before to find private professional assistance.

Three Anxiety and Stress Relief Techniques
Anxiety and stress do not have to run you life. These exercises can help you make that transition. While slow, gentle deep breathing is a quick fix, examining and discarding our mistaken beliefs dissolves anxiety at its roots.

The Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT)
EFT can be very useful for overcoming many types of fear. It seems to help clear blocks in the energy meridians of the body so that we can feel better. The technique is simple to use and the manual is free. You can do it for yourself.

Herbs, aromatherapy, laughter and slow deep breathing are additional ways to overcome all types of fear.

When we are more stressed, we tend to be vulnerable to many types of fear.

These fears often become less bothersome when we reduce the level of chronic stress in our life. For more simple natural tips and techniques for stress relief visit Gentle Stress Relief home page.

Please remember the information on this page is not intended to diagnose or treat emotional or medical problems. Please see a qualified health care professional if your problem persists.

Sources:

Hawkins, David R., 2006, Transcending The Levels of Consciousness, The Stairway to Enlightenment. West Sedona Arizona: Veritas Publishing

Hawkins, David R., 2009, Healing and Recovery. West Sedona Arizona: Veritas Publishing