I had a coaching session today in which I explored my fear of heights.
There is this one bridge that I drive over every time I travel through upstate New York, and this summer, there was construction on it and they took off the guard rails! I could not look out my window (I wasn’t driving!) until we got onto the other side. My insides and outsides clenched and tightened up as we passed over the bridge. The only thing unclenched was my mouth which opened when yelled at my husband every time he tried to point out the construction or the boats in the water underneath.
Fears are a funny thing.
I have no idea where my fear of heights came from. It certainly has to do with control (or lack thereof) in it and maybe my brain said, “Heights is the thing I will latch onto!”
My fear isn’t debilitating though I’ve never tried climbing a ladder higher than to paint my dining room ceiling. And part of me thinks that any normal person would wig out on that bridge…I guess I can’t say how bad the fear is if I never actually have experiences that test it.
Through my session which involved some hypnosis and rewiring of the neuropathways, I realized that my fear of heights prevents me from seeing the big picture. I get so stuck in the fear that I don’t take in other details like the forests surrounding the bridge or the river that flows beneath it. Forget the even smaller details of boats in the river or the leaves changing colors on the trees.
Perhaps that is what fears does to us. In the heightened state of fight/flight/freeze, we get stuck focusing on one thing, and we can’t widen our view.
I’m grateful for my session today because I think releasing this fear will enable me to pull back and look at the much larger picture. I’m looking forward to seeing what my reaction is when I pass over that bridge again later this year.
I write everyday because it allows me to voice what is at the surface. Once that is out of my head, I can dig in another layer deeper. My daily writing practice has been my greatest exploration of self and humanity. Sign up here to receive these thought nuggets in your inbox on the daily.