- Mental Health»
- Mental Health Self-Help
How to overcome fear of people?
Imaginary fear of people
What is fear actually? It is assuming that the worst will happen in your life. It is like looking into the dark and imagining a devil lurking in the corner. You think that you are the sole proprietor of fear and that everyone in the world is courageous. You feel that the rich and the famous are a fearless lot. Do you think that successful people are fearless? They too have fears, but they have the knack of hiding it.
What are the common types of fear?
- You fear fame.
- You fear your high officials.
- You fear failure, rejections and defeat.
- You fear your future.
- You fear about your financial security.
I have fear of heights. Why do I fear high altitudes? It is because I fear I will fall and might hurt myself. I close my eyes while going through high mountain roads. My knees go weak when I look down and see the miniature houses and ant like people. Ugh! It is indeed terrifying.
But is height really terrifying? No, it is not. So many thousands of people travel by plane and they are safe. It is my assumption that I will fall which makes me fear altitudes. So, you can see that it is assumptions that aggravate your fear.
Why do you fear people?
- You fear their success.
- You fear that they will not listen to if you approach them.
- You fear that they will ridicule you.
- You fear you will be rejected.
- You are in awe of their elevated position in life.
What do you do when you have fear of people? You shut yourself into your own shell of aloofness and refuse to meet them. This is a fatal step towards failure in life. Unless you interact with people, you can never hope for success. Fear of meeting people just signals that you are not confident of yourself. You put other people on a pedestal and place yourself at the rock bottom.
You should respect yourself for what you are. Unless you respect and like yourself, you will not be able to gather the confidence and assurance needed to interact with your colleagues, your higher ups and other people who come into your life. You should have trust in your ability and you should not think of yourself as a failure.
What do you do when you enter a room of people? Do you walk in confidently? Or do you fumble and behave awkwardly? Do you think everyone is watching you? No, everyone is doing his own work and no one has time to observe and ridicule you. It is you who is assuming that people are judging you.
Have you seen sales representatives? Their work is to meet people and they never know the reaction of people they are going to meet. But they cannot delay their job of meeting them; as if they do so they will be thrown out of work. Their initial days would have been a period of stuttering and stammering dialogues with their customers. But their persistence makes them overcome fear of meeting even the higher officials and they become persuasive smooth talkers and master the art of calculated selling.
It is when you do not make any efforts to fight your fear do you feel it engulfing your life and making you feel overwhelmed by it. You find it easy to give in to fear because it needs doing nothing. But to overcome fear and fight against it needs immense grit and courage from you and you do not seem to realize that you have that capacity in you.
How then can you overcome fear?
- Do not give undue importance to others.
- Feel that you are equal to anyone.
- Affluence and fame does not make any person great and so you need not fear them.
- Your higher ups must be respected and not feared.
- Like yourself very much and think that you are a worthy person.
- Practice courage and make efforts to meet people and do not shy away from them.
Do you think rich and famous people are someone to be feared? No, they are not any greater than you. They are as human as you. They might be blessed with the riches world can offer and fame also might be theirs, but that does not make them superior to you. When you talk with them you will see that they are as human as you.
When you go to meet people, do not prepare yourself as if you are going in for a military training. Keep your mind blank and talk according to the situation. If you rehearse your dialogues and enact it scene by scene you will freeze into immobility when you do meet them.
People are people whoever they are. When you look at everyone as your equal you will feel your fear disappearing. When you say ‘nothing is impossible’, surprisingly everything becomes possible.
‘Fear is a dark room where negatives develop’ – Usman B. Asif.
It is so easy to give in to your fear and make yourself a non entity. Do you want to be a nothing in life? Or do want to shove aside fear and become someone you can be proud of? Always choose the second option as you are worth more than the negative thoughts fear bestows on you.
© 2013 mathira