Overcoming my fears: Exposure

 
 
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Dr. Expert

From: Teen
To: Dr. Expert
Subject: Questions...
Why not just stay away from the things you’re afraid of?

Dr.Expert:

It's normal to want to avoid things you fear. And it works - in the short run. The problem is that you don't get the opportunity to learn that the things you fear are not always as dangerous as you think.


From: Teen
To: Dr. Expert
Subject: Questions...
So How can I overcome my fears?

Dr.Expert:

You need to gradually face the things you fear! The process of facing fears is called exposure. Exposure involves slowly and repeatedly facing things you fear until you feel less anxious.

Starting with less scary things, you work up towards facing scarier things. This process happens naturally all the time. For example, when you learned to ride a bike you started on a tricycle.

Then you rode a bike with training wheels and your mom or dad holding onto the back of the bike.

Finally, you worked your way up to riding a two-wheel bike on your own. This process also happens when we learn to swim or drive a car.

 

Next: Exposure - How to do it