Wednesday, 12 November 2014


A phobia is an anxiety disorder characterised by extreme and irrational fear of simple things or social situations. Unlike other anxiety disorders, there is not an underlying anxiety present for all or most of the time, but only when the "trigger" or source of the fear is physically present. In the presence of the trigger, the phobic response is immediate and can be very severe. Interestingly, the fear response can also happen just by thinking about or imagining the trigger stimulus. The sufferer often develops complex strategies to avoid any risk of exposure to the source of the phobia. This can often reach a stage where the phobia literally rules their life.

An NLP practitioner has several tools that tackle the thought processes behind the phobic response. Deeper therapy is not usually necessary as there is no need, in most cases, to look for a "root cause" of the anxiety, as the anxiety is only there when the phobic trigger is present. Treatment is usually a combination of hypnotic suggestion and neuro-linguistic programming techniques. Effectively, the subconscious mind is re-programmed to experience the previously terrifying subject in a new and different way. The majority of phobias are removed in a single session of treatment.

Phobia Q&A

Are phobias diseases?

A phobia is not a disease or a mental illness, merely a somewhat distorted thought process. The object of the sufferer’s fear is often imagined in a manner which is far worse than the actual risk to their safety. Of course, the sufferer knows that their thoughts are irrational and illogical, but this doesn’t mean they can stop them. The problem is not in the logical, conscious mind; it is in the instinctive, subconscious part.

Can they easily be treated, and how?

Fortunately most phobias are easily removed in one session of neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) and light hypnosis. The subconscious thought process which causes the phobic response is “scrambled” in such a way that the client finds it impossible to think about the former phobic trigger in quite the same way again!

Why do people get phobias?

Sometimes it is by exposure to a frightening situation at a young age. For example, a barking dog can seem very large and terrifying when you are only small; to most adults, much less so. The learned behaviour may persist into adulthood, and a phobia is born. Phobias can also be learned from parents, or older relations. Children use adults, and particularly parents as role models, and if Mum leaps onto a chair screaming every time she sees a spider, it is more than likely her child will learn to react in a similar way. After all, if it is that scary for an adult, what chance does a kid have?

Have you any advice for people who suffer from phobias?

There is no need to suffer. Contact a hypnotherapist or NLP practitioner and you could be free of fear by tomorrow. There is more information on my web site:

021 487 6072