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How to overcome fear of heights:
HOW TO OVERCOME FEAR OF HEIGHTS:
At some point or another, we've all been in that head-swimming moment when the world seems to be disappearing beneath our feet. A wrong move could mean disaster. Fear creeps in. Nothing makes you want to curl up into a ball and travel anywhere flat like that.
It is a natural instinct to be afraid of heights, but it affects some people more than others. When this occurs, you are unable to accomplish things that you should be able to do. The good news is that you can take steps to deal with it - and you might be surprised by the fact that one of them involves having the traditional wisdom turned on its head.
1. Face your fears:
It is crucial to emphasise that a certain amount of anxiety in the presence of large, potentially fatal drops is not irrational. Climbers and hillwalkers would be much smaller without children's natural aversion to heights.
When a perfectly normal, healthy instinct becomes a phobia, it is known as an exaggerated fear.
Past negative experiences, internalised criticism, and other psychological obstacles make up the mix. Each person's level of uneasiness around heights is unique; everyone has their own demons.
Guidance, practice, and confidence are key to coping with all these challenges. Fear of heights can never be completely overcome, but it can be controlled.
Even the most basic actions seem impossible when people freeze and go into panic mode. For example, walking or making simple scrambling movements is impossible.
We are intimidated by unfamiliar situations. Because familiarity, repetition, and routine have removed the terror factor from dangerous situations, we do not fear them in our daily lives. People are aware of the dangers of crossing the road, but they are not paralysed by fear.
Through practice, you can also get used to steepness, height, and exposure. You will be able to cope with the mental and physical challenges presented by terrain where height is a factor as you spend more time on it. It is only by acquainting yourself with the feeling of the rock under your hands and feet, trusting your body to do what you ask of it, as well as believing in your balance, that you will build the mental confidence you need.
Practice, as ever, makes perfect.
3 - Community support:
The first step in overcoming acrophobia is to realise that this is a long-term process: You should be looking for other people who also have acrophobia as well as perhaps joining a support group for that disorder. A community can include a wide range of resources and ideas that you might not have considered if you weren't a member. Speaking with others who suffer from similar problems is therapeutic in and of itself, along with being able to exchange ideas.
4 - Recruit a Professional instructor:
The challenge, however, is getting to this point. To do this, you will need to hire an accredited guide or instructor that you can trust both for advice and abilities.
Being in the company of someone who encourages confidence in your own abilities makes all the difference. It's common to think there's no way we can make a certain move or overcome a bad step.
The moment when you actually do it is a revelation, one which will unlock new realms of exploration and possibility. But sometimes it takes another person to give your confidence the leg-up you need to do the thing in the first place. Gradually improving your ability will help replace those bad experiences with good ones.
Different types of height related phobias:
In fact, there are a number of different height related phobias, and while they might seem similar on the surface, they are in fact very different in nature. To ensure you receive the right treatment, it is important to identify exactly what you are suffering from. Here are the most common ones:
1 - Acrophobia:
Acrophobia is a phobia that is related to an extreme fear of heights, and is one of the most common phobias in the world. In the worst case scenario, a person can only function at the ground level in the worst case scenario.
2 - Aeroacrophobia:
Mountaineers, hot air balloons, even air travel can make an aerophobic nervous. These people prefer to travel within a country by bus or train rather than by air. Their fear of open spaces requires special therapy.
3 - Illyngophobia:
It is not to be confused with acrophobia, which is a fear of heights and dizziness. In some cases, people are not frightened of heights directly, but they may be worried about getting dizzy from heights.
4 - Climacophobia:
In this phobia, an individual has a fear of heights, such as a ladder or climbing a staircase.
What causes Acrophobia:
The exact cause of acrophobia is still a mystery. It is a well known phobia that has been affecting many people for many years. There may be a variety of causes for this fear of heights such as being a victim of a traumatising event or seeing someone else fall from a high place.
The first step in overcoming this fear is understanding what causes it, then finding ways to overcome it.
1 - Traumatic experiences:
You may have developed a fear of heights as a result of negative experiences you had in the past. An object or situation can trigger phobias arising from negative experiences or panic attacks.
2 - Genetics :
It is possible that you share genetic factors or learned behaviours with the phobias or anxieties of your parents.
If this is the case, a professional can assess and conclude the possibilities.
3 - Brain function:
There may also be a connection between the development of specific fears and changes in how the brain functions. As a complex organ, the brain can change depending on its use.
Throughout life, the brain increases in size, a process known as neurogenesis. Memory loss and difficulty concentrating are some symptoms of changes in brain function. In the long run, this can have a serious impact on a person's personal or professional life.
There is still a debate about whether acrophobia is learned or genetic and if it is a reaction to a traumatic event.
When individuals with Acrophobia are confronted or even thought about their phobia, it is possible for them to experience symptoms similar to those of a panic attack.
The remedy for Acrophobia is exposure therapy, cognitive behavioural therapy, or hypnotherapy. Individuals who wish to overcome their fear can seek treatment for it through one of these methods.
If you have a fear of heights or spend a lot of time worrying about how to avoid certain situations, then you should contact a therapist.
Developing tools that can help you overcome your fear is very much possible with a therapist.