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Therapist Leslie
Therapist Leslie, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 379
Experience:  Owner and Psychotherapist at Self-Employed, Private Practice
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Why do I have so many fears?

Customer Question

Why do I have so many fears?
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Therapist Leslie replied 9 months ago.

Good evening and thank you so much for your message. I realize it's difficult to reach out. Please know I honor your courage.

My name is ***** ***** I am a psychotherapist in the Metro Boston area.

Can you please tell me some of the things you fear most? Specific fears such as spiders, thunder, heights and so on? Or, fear of being in relationships and issues with intimacy? Or, fear of being in crowds or talking with strangers?

I'm eager to answer your question but just need a little bit more information. Looking forward to hearing from you.

Warm regards,

Therapist Leslie

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Hello Leslie, thank you for your response! I am prone to anxieties unfortunately! I had a few episodes of panic attack in a past years, but it was random and long time ago. Since my son was born (6 years ago) and his father left us as I found out I'm pregnant - my fears got worth. The major fear of earthquake and tsunami (we live near San Francisco). Now we are having "storm of the century". I've always been afraid of heights and closed spaces. Main fear is for my life and the life of my child. I'm not alone - I have a loving husband who takes care of me and my son, but doesn't understand my fears. I'm only 46 years old and I want to enjoy my life- I don't want to live in fear!!! Please help - I would be greatful for your opinion! Natasha
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Since you've mentioned - I do have fear of spiders and feel very uncomfortable in a crowded places, but I love people and communication
Expert:  Therapist Leslie replied 9 months ago.

Thank you so much for your response, Natasha. I appreciate it and this information is very helpful.

It sounds like all the fears mentioned are different types of anxiety disorders. So, if you picture an umbrella and name it Anxiety Disorders...there are many different types of anxiety disorders that fall underneath such as Specific Phobia (fear of bugs, storms, earthquakes, heights and so on), Panic Disorder (fear that leads to an outright panic attack--as you described you experienced), Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (significant fear after a traumatic event), Social Anxiety(fear of being in various social situations), and so on. You can get a full overview of all types of anxiety disorders at this link: https://www.psychiatry.org/patients-families/anxiety-disorders/what-are-anxiety-disorders

Please know you are not alone in your feelings as Anxiety Disorders are the most common diagnosed psychiatric condition in the United States. I have personally struggled with them and can assure you you do not need to live in fear.

Based upon the work I do and my own personal experience, these are my recommendations:

1.psychotherapy to learn some coping skills

2.psychiatry (medication for anxiety)

3.exercise (to raise serotonin levels in the brain)

4.yoga/meditation (to overall ease anxiety)

I would also recommend the following coping techniques:

  • Take a time-out. Practice yoga, listen to music, meditate, get a massage, or learn relaxation techniques. Stepping back from the problem helps clear your head.
  • Eat well-balanced meals. Do not skip any meals. Do keep healthful, energy-boosting snacks on hand.
  • Limit alcohol and caffeine, which can aggravate anxiety and trigger panic attacks.
  • Get enough sleep. When stressed, your body needs additional sleep and rest.
  • Exercise daily to help you feel good and maintain your health.
  • Take deep breaths. Inhale and exhale slowly.
  • Count to 10 slowly. Repeat, and count to 20 if necessary.
  • Do your best. Instead of aiming for perfection, which isn't possible, be proud of however close you get.
  • Accept that you cannot control everything. Put your stress in perspective: Is it really as bad as you think?
  • Welcome humor. A good laugh goes a long way.
  • Maintain a positive attitude. Make an effort to replace negative thoughts with positive ones.
  • Get involved. Volunteer or find another way to be active in your community, which creates a support network and gives you a break from everyday stress.
  • Learn what triggers your anxiety. Is it work, family, school, or something else you can identify? Write in a journal when you’re feeling stressed or anxious, and look for a pattern.

Have I answered your question, Natasha? Is there anything else I can do to assist you further? I want to ensure you are pleased with my service. I also gently request you provide a star rating for me. Of course, we can continue to talk after the rating is provided.

Please take good care of yourself and feel free to contact me with any questions you may have.

Warm regards,

Therapist Leslie