To feel fear is human. If no-one felt fear we’d probably all be getting into stupid situations that would kill us. But when does a fear cross the line, and become irrational?
We’re all scared of something. For instance, I’m scared of spiders. And why shouldn’t I be? They’re creepy and I can’t stand watching them move on eight legs.
It’s perfectly rational to be scared of heights – what if you fall? But what makes a fear irrational is when it keeps popping up at inconvenient times and manifests itself to whatever situation you’re in. When there’s tons of other logical explanations and reasons, but you cling on to only one – your irrational fear.
The doubts play over and over in your mind. No matter what I try to think about now, my mind will keep retreating back them. Health anxiety is a big part of my irrational fears.
The best way to combat these fears is to draw up logical explanations for what is happening. If a friend hasn’t text you back, does it mean they’re in danger? Or could it be that they’re driving, their phone died, or they just didn’t notice the text? When I worked in an office I was always on edge and in constant fear of being fired. I felt like such a let down. Each and every time my boss asked “Can I see you in my office?” I’d feel the anxiety kicking in. This is it.
In reality, they would just want a catch up with me, maybe after a holiday or a busy period at work. Sometimes I’d be in trouble, and they’d tell me off, but they never fired me out of the blue. It has happened to people – but to think it’d happen to me every time my boss wanted to talk to me was ridiculous.
For me, that was the greatest way to kick the fears out – calling them out for what they are. Ridiculous.
Anxiety plays a huge part in my irrational thinking but I won’t let it hold me back and control my life. Fight or flight is a natural and normal response to danger, but if I let my irrational thoughts and fears take the wheel on every decision then I’d never progress or get anything done. Learning to recognise them is the first and biggest step, then questioning them, rationalising them, and finally chucking them to one side and never considering them again.