Forget Halloween, here are the 4 biggest real human fears
Halloween is the time of year traditionally associated with a fear of witches, goblins, ghouls and ghosts. But what are the real-world fears that most humans succumb to? Below, Alex Hedger, Clinical Director of independent Cognitive Behavioural Therapy clinics, Dynamic You lists the four fears we are hardwired to fret all-year round, not just on Halloween.
1. Fear of Rejection – humans are pack animals, for the simple reason that we are more likely to stay alive the longer we stay together. As a result, many of us are constantly haunted by the possibility that we will not be accepted or made part of the pack. We feel instantly vulnerable if we are not within our group.
2. Fear of Change – our minds are designed to keep everything constant. When change occurs, it can instantly turn on the mind’s threat system and cause us to look for potential new dangers. This can send us into overdrive, especially if the change is a material one, e.g. divorce, loss of a job.
3. Fear of Failure – that belief that you’re ‘just not good enough’ is not a pleasant one, but it can be surprisingly common in both our personal and working lives. Our minds can build up a fear of failure to try and prevent us from experiencing negative emotions that come from failing, but sadly the fear of failure itself can lead to negative emotions!
4. Fear of Losing Control – losing control can make us feel vulnerable and in danger, so many of us overcompensate and require ourselves to be in total control of all aspects of our lives at all times. The fear of losing control often becomes more frightening than the reality of actually losing control ever would as a result.
Alex Hedger, Clinical Director of CBT Psychotherapy Specialists, Dynamic You, comments:
“Halloween is synonymous with fear, but real human fear is far more basic than worries about witches, goblins and ghosts. The fears most of us experience tend to link back to the fundamental instincts of survival and the pack. Our need for constancy, predictability and acceptance is always lurking in the dark recesses of our minds and tends to manifest itself in the fear of rejection, change, failure, death and loss of control.”