How to Overcome Fear of Heights

Video – VLog #35

How to overcome fear of heights?

What activities is there to overcome fear of heights?

Is it fear of edges – falling – not heights?

Script – VLog #35

David Logan: Hello and welcome. Another week of The Techno Dinosaur meets the IT geek. This is week 35. My name is David Logan, the IT geek, the guy who takes the jargon out of technology for the home-based office worker. With me today is my regular partner in crime Willie Nicol. So, Willie, how are you and where are you?

Willie Nicol: Thank you David. I’m very well thank you. My name is Willie Nicol. I am the techno Dinosaur, since I know very little about IT but I’m also personal development life coach. I’m based in Troon, South Ayrshire, Scotland.

David Logan: Excellent. So, this week I have a question for you and throughout this series we’ve been here asking each other questions, week in week out, where we both take jargon out of the, out of our knowledge, out of our area of expertise to explain for the viewer, you the viewer.

David Logan: Today’s question Willie is based around myself. I have a phobia, a fear of heights. I’ve seen me crawl across glass floors, shake when I go on glass covered helicopters.

David Logan: How, can you tell me in simplistic terms, without getting too personal, the steps you would take to help me overcome that fear please?

Willie Nicol: Okay David. The fancy word for fear of heights is acrophobia and I did some research you won’t be surprised to hear, that one in fifteen people will have some degree of acrophobia at some point in their life. One in three people have some degree of fear of heights but not to the extent they have acrophobia which is a very severe fear of heights to the point where you would avoid any situation where you might encounter heights. So, can I ask you how long have you had this fear?

David Logan: As long as I can remember, so that’s 21 years plus.

Willie Nicol: [laughs] And, what caused this fear do you know?

David Logan: I don’t.

Willie Nicol: Okay. Everyone has fears and phobias and there is a debate about whether they are innate or learned i.e., innate – were we born with them? Or did we learn them? According to research we only have two fears we’re born with; one is the fear of falling which is quite pertinent here and a fear of loud noise. So, the loud noises. We hear a loud noise, we go into our old friend the fight or flight syndrome because there’s a loud noise that might be something dangerous round the corner, we need to react to it. However, we’re talking about fear of heights here. So, the innate philosophy is that we’re born with a fear of heights, but it only becomes a problem when we can’t do something because heights are involved.

Willie Nicol: The other theory is it’s learned behaviour. For example, as a young lad you might have climbed a tree and you thought nothing of it. But if you fell out the tree that would be a negative response to that activity, climbing the tree, and thereafter you would associate climbing trees and the subsequent falling as a negative thing. So, heights then become a problem. Does that make sense?

David Logan: Perfect.

Willie Nicol: Right, so, if it’s learned behaviour, we have learned to become afraid of heights. Now depending whether it’s innate or learned, yes, there are ways in which this can be addressed but it will be helpful to find out where it started, when it started and how it started. But you’re saying that you can’t remember.

David Logan: Correct ..

Willie Nicol: Okay …

David Logan: As far as I can remember, I’ve always had this fear.

Willie Nicol: And you have articulated that this fear can cause you to crawl across the floor if you’re above something. Or what other symptoms, if you like, do you have?

David Logan: Well, if you went walking along an edge .… like a, like a rope, know how you go, know how you see the ropes across from one mountain to another mountain. No, it’s not the ropes it’s the .… is it the gangway? Is that the proper way? See if there’s ropes I wouldn’t be able to do that either. It’s something to do with the glass floor, it’s just it’s, you know, you’re open to the elements.

Willie Nicol; Well . .

David Logan: Another, I’ll tell you, yes, so, no that’s different, it’s not heights.

Willie Nicol: Well, the acrophobia, the, if you like, the very heightened fear of heights, right, can be so bad that you don’t have to be up high to experience them. The very thought of being up high can cause you to become disturbed. So, you might experience vertigo. You might experience the fight or flight response things …. the racing heart, the churning stomach, right, the clammy palms, whatever. And you don’t actually have to be up high. You’re just thinking about being up high which then caused that reaction. It’s not uncommon, as I said before, whether I think that we are born, not with a fear of heights, we’re born with a fear of falling which is obviously related and this is something that scientists have proved.

Willie Nicol: That the only two things babies are born with is loud noises and falling. So, it’s not the fear of the heights, it’s more the fear of falling from heights and this can be addressed in a number of ways which I can articulate perhaps in a later video. That’s not helping you right now but perhaps we’ll talk off camera about how I can help you with that.

David Logan: Excellent, thank you Willie, once again. So, as a summary, if you don’t mind, we’ll summarise it up. So, my fear of heights you’re saying really need to go back to where the fear was found and then replay that back. But as you say it could be fight or fear… sorry… fight or ……

Willie Nicol: Flight, flight …

David Logan: Flee is it?

Willie Nicol: Fight or flight.

David Logan: Okay, fight or flight. Or there’s… the… yeah. As you say, you need more detail, you need more deeper in. So, I think we’ll plan it for a video maybe when we get to the bottom of this, maybe, and play it out again.

Willie Nicol: I’m just laughing here cause you’re talking about heights and now you’re talking about the bottom …. that means falling.

David Logan: Okay, okay. Well, I’m small in height. Let’s bring this to a conclusion.

David Logan: Thank you for that Willie. Fantastic question. I do realise you can’t really answer it that well because you can’t dig in that personal with me on live here.

David Logan: To the viewer, thank you for listening. Please, we need more subscribers on YouTube. If we get 100 subscribers, we’ve got a special one off offer for you. So, please subscribe down here. We’re also on Twitter, we’ve got a website, LinkedIn channel, Facebook channel. So, from me it’s goodbye, stay safe and stay healthy. Thank you.

Willie Nicol: Thank you David. Yes, I would reiterate that. Stay safe, stay healthy, don’t be climbing any trees. So, it’s goodbye from me, the Techno Dinosaur.

David Logan: Goodbye.

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