Learning to Manage Phobias with Positive Thinking

A phobia is a very intense and troubling fear you feel toward something. In order for it to qualify as a phobia, it has to have an impact on your quality of life. For example, if someone is so afraid of snakes that he or she refuses to leave the house, the fear can certainly be considered a phobia. The fear of snakes is causing the person to feel unable to live a normal life (e.g., going to the store to shop, spending time with friends, going to work every day).

Many times, therapists will treat people who have phobias with exposure therapy. In exposure therapy, the person with the phobia is gradually taught how to encounter the object of fear (or feared situation) in a calm manner. By slowly acclimating the person to his or her greatest fear, the therapist is able to help the client feel less anxiety.

Exposure therapy can be very effective, but there is some chance of relapse after the initial recovery from a phobia.

Is there any way to prevent someone from succumbing to a phobia again after learning how to beat the fear?

According to researchers from Ohio State University, the answer may be yes!

They are exploring the connection between someone’s attitude toward the object of his or her fear and how lasting the effects of therapy are. Basically, if someone is taught to have a positive attitude toward a feared object or situation and to view memories of it positively, he or she is more likely to see lasting results of therapy.

Read more here:


Photo Credit: Angelo González via Compfight cc