What if I mess up? What if everyone makes fun of me? When will this nightmare end? These are common questions we think to ourselves when we are about to give a presentation or speech. The reason for these questions is nervousness or fear. Fear causes us to worry immensely about the oncoming ordeal we are about to suffer through and picture the worst possibilities that could happen during it. But the real question is, why do we even get afraid at all?
To answer this question, we must first look at the different types of fear. The first is worry / anxiety, which are both elicited by the thought of being hurt or having to go through a difficult challenge in the future. These are often the most common fears that teenagers struggle with, as many of their challenges have to do with their future.
Other types of fear are dread, terror, and panic, which are involved with what you are doing in the present. These types cause a person to freeze up and make imprudent decisions in that alarming time.
The last type of fear involves a part of the brain, known as the amygdala, that controls your emotions. This is the type of fear that involves past experiences, and it is known as horror. When you experience horror, your amygdala recalls events in your past which causes you to experience fear in that moment, even if you aren’t going through a tribulation right then. Horror can cause a person to have panic attacks, think constantly about past troubles, or just completely lose their sanity for a few moments while their past comes back to haunt them. Horror can also lead to the other fears like anxiety, in the way that thinking and fearing about what you did in the past could lead to perpetual perturbation about how those actions could affect your future.
Returning to this article’s opening question, we experience fear is because it is a natural instinct. When you experience a frightening situation, your amygdala reacts and shoots fear signals in the brain while your adrenal glands release adrenaline all throughout the body’s bloodstream, which is why you feel this “false excitement” when you are in that situation. In this time, you either freeze, cower, or react. We fear because it is an instinct for people to know that something is wrong, and that they probably shouldn’t be there.
There is another question raised as well: What should we do when we are afraid? Some of you who responded to The Logic’s survey have found a way to ensure that your fear does not take over. For example, Matt Bercek’s fear is that he might accidentally hurt others or himself while using his firearms while hunting or just at a range. However, in order to prevent that from happening, he takes many precautions. “I keep the safety on at all times as well as being cautious, safe, and making sure the weapon is always pointed in a safe direction,” said Matt Bercek.
Another example is dealing with the fear of doing something embarrassing in front of your friends, or not understanding something in class when everyone else does. In order to get over this fear, Alicia Fick tries to ignore what people say and not care about what they think. “I don’t always overcome my fear, but when I do, I try to ignore what people say, and put myself in the mindset of not caring what other people will say,” said Alicia Fick.
Another way to get over your fear is to talk to God in these kinds of situations, like many others do who took The Logic’s survey. If you ever are afraid, just remember that you are never truly alone, and that you can make it through to the end.