How I overcame a phobia
If you have a phobia, it can have a large and unwanted impact on your life. I managed to get rid of my phobia, and I hope this may help you to get rid of your phobia.
The beginning of my fear
The beginning of the phobia. I was at home one summer day about twelve years ago when I heard one of my dogs barking urgently.
I went outside to see my ten week old puppy standing near the door and watching her mother and a snake, both with teeth bared staring at each other about a foot from each other. I picked up the pup and called the schnauzer, who came to me. I shoved them both inside and swung around to see what the snake was doing. I couldn’t see it, it had disappeared. I went inside, shaking. I didn’t go outside for the rest of the day, and neither did my young son or any of the dogs.
After that, the sight of a snake on the TV or in a book was enough to make me sweat and tremble. This went on for some years. I can remember there was a school reader that kids like to read when I was there helping out at the primary school. I’m sure they didn’t do it maliciously, but I couldn’t bear seeing the pictures in the book. I used to cover the picture with a blank piece of paper.
What I did to get over the fear
Finally something happened that helped me get over my extreme fear of snakes. We had sold two schnauzers to a couple who bred snakes. We visited them once, and while we were there we were invited to see the inside of their snake breeding area. This was an attractive outside building. Jake and Graham went in without fear while I hung around the door, trying to work up the courage to face the snakes.
I’m not sure how long it took me, but I eventually went in, to be confronted by Simon with a large python in his hands. He told me the snake was friendly and safe and he then draped the reptile over my hands. I stood still, and concentrated on breathing. My initial reaction was to run and scream, but I didn’t do that. My gentle breathing helped me to calm down, and from that time, my phobia was cured.
Life is better now!
So if you have a phobia, I can heartily endorse the ‘Face Your Fear and Do It Anyway’ method. As long as the thing you are afraid of can be handled in a danger free way, GO FOR IT!
I can look at a snake on the TV, in a book or in real life now, without feeling a great fear. Being wary of snakes in my country is a good thing. The snake that sparked my phobia was probably a Brown Snake. These snakes are venomous and many people and pets are bitten by these snakes every summer. Many can die from the bite if action isn't taken quickly enough.
Have a healthy wariness isn't limiting on your life. Having an unreasonable fear or phobia can be very limiting. Face your fears, and do it anyway, but be careful!