• Steve Crabb

Living Phobia Free – Fear of Public Speaking – #5 The root causes of phobias

Updated: Oct 2, 2019

In this episode of the playlist Fear of Public Speaking; I begin by looking at how you can identify the root causes of how your phobia began. Now you know why and you also know where the work has to begin in order to de-sensitize yourself. In later episodes I will cover techniques to help you get over these past learning events.

the root causes of phobias help your mind know what path to follow


Having an understanding why a problem ever occurred never changed anything, however it can come as a relief to anyone suffering with a phobia of any sort to understand how it came about.


I describe a phobia as

“A phobia is an unconscious protection mechanism designed to protect you from a object, activity or situation that the unconscious has learnt could be a threat. It protects you by using worry and fear, it’s a mechanism which is simply overdoing it’s job.”


In a previous video I described the three naturally hardwired fears we are all born with, any other fears whether a fear of public speaking, fear of driving or flying or a fear of cotton buds has come about because at some time you learnt to be scared. You would have had a trigger or learning experience which sensitized you (or over sensitized you ) to the perceived threat. Whether that’s to an object, activity or situation.


So how many ways are there to learn what to be fearful of that are the root causes of developing a phobia?


Lesson number one. Have a one trial learning experience, often called the sensitizing or trigger event. One horrible school play or painful visit to the dentist and the mind learns what to be scared of. “Okay that’s scary – let’s avoid that object, activity, or situation!”


Lesson number two. Have a number of minor unpleasant or scary events, usually within a short time period of each other and the mind decides, “Okay that’s scary – let’s avoid that object, activity, or situation!”


Lesson number three. Feel run down, stressed, ill, tired, drunk, off your head on drugs, or medicated. Basically be disorientated and then have a situation occur which if you were in a better state would be no problem, but because you are in an altered state of mind, the mind goes. “Okay that’s scary – let’s avoid that object, activity, or situation!”


Lesson number four. Observe an event, either in real life, on TV, or on You Tube which the mind perceives as being potentially harmful and the mind goes “Okay that’s scary – let’s avoid that object, activity, or situation!”


And last but not least lesson number five. Be told or read about something potentially harmful by someone and the mind goes “Okay that’s scary – let’s avoid that object, activity, or situation!”


Lessons four and five work particularly well if the person teaching you is someone you regard as an authority figure, or important or similar to you people such as parents, siblings, and close friends.



In this video series “Living Phobia Free” I will be covering tips, techniques, observations and sharing information about overcoming a wide range of phobias and fears.




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