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Alan Whitton Comments on The National Council of Hypnotherapy’s response on new Phobia Statistics

The ‘National’ Council for Hypnotherapy recently responded to some new statistics on phobias and those reporting to be suffering with a phobia.

The source of the stats are reported to have come from the International Business Times, wherein it is stated that half of adults living in the UK suffer phobias,  a third of the 2,000 people studied reported a fear of heights – sometimes called Acrophobia, Altophobia and Batophobia (fear of heights or being close to high buildings –  nothing to do with Batman). Following those were the ever prevalent fear of flying –  sometimes called Aviophobia, Aviatophobia or Pteromerhanophobia –  usually by people who want to look like they know what they’re talking about.
In the survey one in 10 were afraid of spiders. The study 
alleges to have measured how affected sufferers were by their phobias and one in ten said it had affected relationships and a further more worrying 7 percent said that it had cost them their job. However I question the understanding of what a Phobia is. One definition is:

Phobia: An extreme or irrational fear of or aversion to something

Running out of the room when  you see a spider is, pointing at one saying “eww yuk” is not.

Having heart palpitations and screaming with terror when pigeons come near you is, calling them flying rats and half trying to shoo them away with a kick is not.

I recently went to Sorrento, staying in one of the cliffside hotels overlooking the Bay of Naples. On the fourth floor looking down at the rocks below I got the collywobbles for a second. This is *not* a phobia, or some irrational fear (of heights), this is a HEALTHY fear of death. I know my hip level is higher than the top of the balcony rail, so I’m taking good care of myself and standing appropriately.

However, I could probably work this up in my head, tell myself a convoluted and plausible story that I had developed a phobia. I had a lady come to see me, saying she had a phobia of sharks and that she wanted to swim with sharks. I told her how does she know, and she didn’t have an answer other than “well I get scared when I think about doing it”. That’s because they’re sharks lady! You’re *supposed to* be afraid of them. Needless to say I did not get her business.

The hypno council’s response to these figures then bleats on about how Hypnotherapy is an effective way to solve phobias.

Any yes, you can use Hypnosis to get rid of this problem, although a more elegant solution is to use the NLP ‘Fast Phobia Cure. I ‘ve personally used this method successfully with clients, as well as Hypnotism other changework methods to good effect.

If you *think* you’ve got a phobia and you’d like some help getting over it, working with someone with experience is always going to help. If you think I can help you, give me a call on 07903 713234 or email me.