When I was about age four I had a phobia about …Umbrellas! Yes I was terrified of going anywhere if I got even the slighted glimpse of one of those big black monsters. This was a huge inconvenience for my parents as on wet days one of them or Granny would have to sit with me in the car with me instead of going into mass. Visitors to our house were forewarned that past the front gate was strictly an umbrella free zone. I vividly remember the terror I had on seeing an open umbrella and no amount of coxing or explaining to me that it was harmless was any help. This situation must have gone on for at least a year until my mother had a brainwave. On a shopping trip to Dublin which would have been a rear event in those days she bought me a small pink and blue umbrella. This may well have been the first time such an item ever crossed the Shannon. The next morning I clearly remember Mammy saying “I got you a present it’s in the hallway. I ran out in excitement and to my horror I see what looks like an umbrella opened up on the floor….. But wait it can’t be … this one is small and very pretty!!!!
Phobias are irrational fears about something ordinary like an umbrella, dogs, cats, or even travelling in a lift or flying in a plane. Introducing a person to the frightening stimulus in small stages like my mother did with the umbrella is one way of overcoming phobias. This works better for objects and animals than for events or situations. In Systematic Kinesiology we have another method of helping people who have phobias. We work very gently on the person’s energy system to calm down the fear in the subconscious mind. This system works well for people who have a fear of flying, public speaking or similar.
To finish my story it took me a day or so to make friends with my new present but then we became inseparable rain, hail or sunshine. After that the big black monsters just seemed to disappear.