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Author Topic: Phobia being around loud and verbally aggressive people  (Read 763 times)

PhotoguyOC

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Phobia being around loud and verbally aggressive people
« on: September 02, 2018, 09:06:28 PM »
Hello fellow PSTEC’ers,

I have a somewhat unconventional fear or I suppose phobia that I’ve been working on with the click tracks for some time now and so far haven’t gotten it to budge yet.  And that is I have a fear of being near people who are vocally loud, excited and/or aggressive.

First a little background about me, I’m a 47 year old male and went through a lot of bullying in my middle school years and a little bit in my later teenage years.  I’m almost positive this has a large part to do with it but what’s odd is as I get older I seem to be affected more by these distant “ghosts” in my past.  I’ve tried traditional psychotherapy and every other type of alternative and energy therapy out there and nothing seems to work (yet).

The way this issue manifests itself in my daily life is if I’m somewhere where there’s two or more men (young or old, doesn’t seem to matter) and they’re speaking very loudly and aggressively to each other (even in a playful or friendly way) or especially if they’re cursing at one another or simply using curse words in an animated way (hearing the F word spoken loudly is especially traumatic to me), I freeze up and instantly feel intense fear, panic and sometimes I almost feel like I’m going to have a panic attack.  The best I can tell, my reason for this fear is that my subconscious mind feels that these people are going to notice me and take out their aggression on me like the bullies in school did.

Going to places like sporting events, bars and pubs and other events where loud and aggressive (and likely drinking) men frequent are absolutely terrifying to me.  My ultimate goal is to be able to be around this kind of behavior and while I may not enjoy it, I can still function normally and not feel like my life and safety are in danger.

So far I’ve done a lot of click tracking on the feelings and mental images of being in these situations.  Usually when an event happens that triggers my fear and anxiety, I’m pretty much ruined for the day as the fight or flight feelings are with me for several hours after.  I’ve tried running the click tracks while these feelings are fresh in my mind and while I have no problem REALLY REALLY TRYING HARD to feel the feelings as Tim instructs, I find myself every bit as scared, heart racing and otherwise terrified after the click track ends (regardless of how many consecutive times I run it).  It’s almost as if I’m so focused on feeling scared that my mind can’t even hear Tim’s instructions on the click track.

I’m hoping someone here can give me some advice on how to start chipping away at this issue as Im getting pretty frustrated.

Brian

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Re: Phobia being around loud and verbally aggressive people
« Reply #1 on: September 03, 2018, 09:49:30 AM »
Been there! First clear any frustration about the clicktracks not working/not working fast enough.

Then go back to the bullying and get extremely upset about it. Other emotions will come up as you get upset and that's ok and good just work them in as you continue to get extremely upset. Get this to a.1 or 0

Finally get extremely angry at it and get angry and worrying about it.

Let us know if you see a shift.

Also afterwards try to clear out any feelings that you are constantly under attack and/or afraid of being attacked and also being under threat.



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Paul

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Re: Phobia being around loud and verbally aggressive people
« Reply #2 on: September 03, 2018, 12:28:19 PM »
Hi PhotoguyOC,

Thanks for posting.

Your experience is common and, while it may seem insurmountable, I have every confidence you can smash this.

There will be experiences that feed into this pattern, and your subconscious mind has revealed some of them and may be obscuring others. Ultimately, its intent is to keep you safe.

Aside from the bullying, you may wish to look at times in your childhood when you were scolded or physically punished.

I appreciate that witnessing aggression, even if it's intended playfully, can be a little jarring for most people. I assure you, though, that PSTEC can really give you a sense of ease about this and you will be able to respond from a place of greater calmness whilst being able to discern real danger from male bravado.

Just to add to what Brian has suggested, I would recommend having a look at the following thread:

http://pstecforum.com/pf/social-anxiety/social-anxiety-and-ptsd-suggestions/

In other words, you may find a quicker pathway to resolving this issue by eliminating beliefs. The easiest tool for the job is the Belief Blasters package (http://bit.ly/beliefblasters)

You could check in with some of the suggested beliefs in that thread and, if they resonate (feel true) and you have the BB package, blast them away. It will make a huge difference, I expect.

Some other beliefs you may wish to check:

"It was not safe to change"
"Everyone was out to get me"
"I was annoying to people"
"I was under constant threat"
"It was dangerous to have people focus their attention on me"
"Fear kept me safe"
"It was dangerous to let go of the fear"
"Loud people were dangerous"
"Aggression was scary"
"Anger was scary"
"It was dangerous to show vulnerability"
"If people had seen my fear, they would have hurt me more"
"Groups were scary"
"I was an easy target"

There are counterexamples and alternatives to each and every one of those beliefs.

Once the beliefs are blasted, this can make a huge difference to your everyday experience.

Please let us know how you get on, or if you have any further questions.

All the best,

Paul  :)
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PhotoguyOC

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Re: Phobia being around loud and verbally aggressive people
« Reply #3 on: September 03, 2018, 01:08:26 PM »
Thanks Brian and Paul for your suggestions!  Right after I posted my question here yesterday I did read the PTSD and Social Anxiety thread and decided to try click tracking on any anger or frustration that I could muster up regarding my experience with PSTEC and anyone from my past who bullied or frustrated me.  To be honest I was a little surprised with how much anger and pent up energy came out and I even found myself silently shouting all kinds of vile and angry things while furiously tapping left and right!  That must have been a funny sight to see :D  Should I continue to click track on my anger and frustration until it finally fizzles out, so to speak and then focus on the fear?  I’m strongly suspecting that both my anger and fear are two sides of the same coin.

As for the beliefs part, I do own the belief blasters package but so far my success with it has been limited at best.  Like I mentioned before, I’ve tried running it on beliefs such as “people were out to get me”, “I always got picked on” etc. but intuitively I keep getting the feeling of “why in the heck would I want to eliminate these beliefs that have kept me safe thus far?”  If I eliminated them that would mean that I would be comfortable or ok with being in these terrifying situations which is the last thing I want to do.  It feels like the ultimate catch 22…I want to eliminate the fear but I’m terrified of not being afraid of a situation that I’m currently afraid of! ::)

Nonetheless I’ll give the the beliefs that you suggest a try Paul as they do resonate with my personal experience.

Thanks again!

Paul

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Re: Phobia being around loud and verbally aggressive people
« Reply #4 on: September 03, 2018, 04:58:00 PM »
Hi PhotoguyOC,

Thanks for your update and it is great to learn you have made some shifts.

Sometimes it is just a case of using the Click Tracks in a slightly different way , or targeting a repressed emotion and making it as visceral as possible.

I would suggest that clearing the anger first would be the smart play and then go for the fear.

Some of the beliefs I suggested will have both been born from the fear and created more of it. It can become like a loop.

The reason I would suggest getting rid of those beliefs is that beliefs shape our experience of the world.

You may hold a belief like "It was dangerous to feel safe."

If someone walks into a nightclub or bar and feels safe and believes that they are safe...they will have a different experience than someone who believed they were in danger and that people were out to get them.

The delusion we all have or have had is that having the fear (and behaving in accordance with it) and the beliefs has kept us safe.

We can have the knowledge and make a more informed decision when we feel neutral or more neutral in a situation.

So, if we believe we are going to be attacked, that belief creates an expectation and creates behaviours. It would mean you are always on-guard and in "reactive mode." Moreover, it robs you of presence and enjoyment.

Eliminating a belief like "people were out to get me" moves it from an absolute to just one possibility that "maybe those people were out to get you, but it didn't mean everyone was or would be."

You can come up with numerous counterexamples for every unwanted belief you hold.

In general, I have found that a more powerful frame is:

"Anything can happen to anyone at any time, so I'll enjoy life as best as I can"

That is a really powerful perspective, I have discovered - not Pollyanna in the slightest. It accepts that anything can happen (you can CT the worst-case scenarios and, because of that, you can embrace life more)

The truth is, that people can act in a multitude of ways, but being conditioned to expect danger does not make it any less likely to happen.

I can assure you that, not only will you enjoy your experience of life more when you decondition the fear and eliminate the beliefs, you will likely be better able to discern the real danger and be able to respond to it.

This will be experiential, however, so once the fear is eradicated...you'll see how this plays out.

Please keep the thread updated with your progress.

All the best,

Paul  :)






Paul McCabe - PSTEC Advanced Practitioner
http://www.lifestyleforchange.com

Please contact me anytime if you want any assistance in utilising PSTEC to help you live a life of tremendous freedom & possibility.

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PhotoguyOC

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Re: Phobia being around loud and verbally aggressive people
« Reply #5 on: September 03, 2018, 05:54:27 PM »
Thanks Paul, you guys are the best!

So after I posted my update earlier today I noticed that I was still feeling irritable and mildly angry after my first pass at click tracking the anger from yesterday so I ran the 14 minute “medium” click track and decided to just click on the anger and go wherever it took me.  All I can say is, HOLY CRAP what a tsunami of emotions!  As I began tapping on the irritability, it quickly became intense anger and again I found myself silently screaming at anyone I could think of who upset me, almost as if I was on auto pilot.  At close to the 10 minute mark, the anger began to shift towards sadness and then the tears came.  And I don’t mean a cute single tear like you see on TV, but full on uncontrollable sobbing!  The crying at times got so bad I was gasping for air and silently yelling out “IT’S NOT FAIR!!!” What's strange is there was no conscious thought during all of this, those words just came out of my mouth.  I guess it was my sub finally having its say?

What I thought would be a single run through of the 14 minute click track became three consecutive plays and the tears and anger just kept coming.  Finally I needed a break so I stopped after the third click track run through but I’m suspecting there’s still more emotion left in the tank, so to speak.  After my click track sessions I went about my day, worked out, did some chores and took a nap.  Now that a few hours have passed I feel slightly more peaceful but I can feel some anxiety still in the background. 

I’ll definitely start working on the beliefs next (using both the BB and PTQT).  As far as the anger goes, is it something that eventually subsides, similar to emptying water out of a large jug, or is it unhealthy for me to keep focusing on it and click tracking?  I can think of a lot of things I’d rather be doing than dwelling on anger every day but will stick with it if it’s part of a clearing process  ;)

Thanks again, I’ll keep updating this thread as I go!

PhotoguyOC

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Re: Phobia being around loud and verbally aggressive people
« Reply #6 on: September 05, 2018, 10:07:27 PM »
After a couple of days of click tracking and belief blasting here’s where I am so far. 

When I click track on fearful situations I’m still getting little to no movement or shift in the intensity of the feelings.  But when I click track on frustration or anger I have no problem unleashing those feelings and I’m able to make good progress on reducing the intensity by the end of the click track.  I’m going to keep going on that until there’s no more anger left.  Hoping it’s sooner rather than later!

I’ve also been running some of the beliefs that Paul suggested using the belief blasters and I’m honestly not sure if it’s making any difference.  A lot of the beliefs that I’m trying to clear are tied to feeling like I will be severely hurt or killed if I let my guard down, show any form of anger towards someone, speak up, etc.  I’m probably over analyzing this to death but if my sub conscious mind’s sole duty is to keep me safe, why would it ever agree to give up a belief that is directly tied to personal safety?

Here’s an extreme but relevant example.  One of my worst fears is being out on a date with a woman and a group of drunk guys come up and start physically harassing us.  In my mind, there’s only two ways out of this. 1. Cower and run away or 2. Stand up to the thugs and be beaten to an inch of my life or likely killed.  If I take choice 1 the shame and guilt would be as bad as mentally dying and if I take choice 2 I’m still likely dead. In using the click tracks the standard advice is to click on the absolute worse case scenario until it’s at a 1 or 0.  Well, to me it doesn’t get worse case than that and I can say right now that no matter how many times I click track on that scenario, I’m still going to feel just as terrified as when I first started.  The idea of click tracking away that innate survival instinct feels about as relevant as click tracking away the biological need for water or food.  How can I convince the sub that it’s “okay” put myself in real (or perceived) danger?  :-\

Brian

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Re: Phobia being around loud and verbally aggressive people
« Reply #7 on: September 05, 2018, 10:47:20 PM »
You  can nibble away at it

Try clicktracking the feelings that you are afraid to clear the problem and that's it's not safe to clear the problem

Then CT the feelings that you can't clear the problem and that it's not going/going to go away

Once that's down then try to CT the problem start with the guilt and shame you would have as a result if you were attacked.

Then CT the feelings that you are constantly under attack by others.




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Brian

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Re: Phobia being around loud and verbally aggressive people
« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2018, 10:55:05 PM »
If you have pstec positive or pqt try installing these suggestions

It's possible I'm really not under attack now
I'm absolutely not in any danger anymore now
It's absolutely true I'm always totally safe now
There's really nothing to be afraid of now
When I'm on a date I'll feel absolutely safe now

If you think it, feel it or say it...PSTEC it!
Book a session: https://goo.gl/2VxCUa
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Paul

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Re: Phobia being around loud and verbally aggressive people
« Reply #9 on: September 06, 2018, 05:52:46 AM »
Hi PhotoguyOC,

Thanks for your updates.

Further to what Brian has written, I just want to point out a few other distinctions.

Something is only a problem, if you perceive it to be. One person's problem is another person's dream.

Consciously, it seems that getting rid of those beliefs would invite more danger. In truth, they would get rid of the emotional experiences and the meanings you attribute to certain events. You can still consciously assess situations but, with the panic removed, it frees you up to discern if something genuinely does seem dangerous. It is one reason why top surgeons are so vital - they can assess based on facts.

A belief like "fear kept me safe" is not inherently true. Fear can get triggered for any reason, and can sometimes prevent people from making rational decisions. However, if you do see a value in feeling fearful in some contexts, you can choose to keep ANY emotion or response you deem to be valuable.

Everything makes sense to your subconscious mind and it can be programmed. Similar to Pavlov's Dogs who salivated every time the bell was rung, as they expected a serving of food, you are conditioned to expect danger every time you hear (what you perceive to be) aggressive exchanges or cursing. You do NOT have to have that response.

There is a logic to this - as you were bullied, aggression and cursing were probably present. You were hurt and felt endangered. This makes absolute sense. Most people who had similar experiences to you would typically respond with "fight or flight", which is actually the dilemma you proposed in your example.

As you may have consciously assessed, however, there are times when aggression and cursing did not result in any danger to you.  Your sub just did the pattern-matching for you - "when there is shouting, danger is imminent."

As well as helping ensure your survival, your subconscious also deals with permanent memory and emotions.

I sense that you perceive this to be a problem, as doing the whole "fight or flight" dance can be exhausting. It is like a smoke alarm that is set to high sensitivity. Imagine how quickly the battery would run down if, at the first sign of steam or smoke (e.g. when taking a shower, or boiling an egg) the alarm would be triggered.

I had this happen to me earlier in the year actually and, while it was good to know the alarm worked well, I was less thrilled when it got triggered every 30 minutes when it detected dust  :D

You would surely want the alarm to be programmed to only be able to discern real smoke.

This is analogous to your subconscious. It works, it keeps you safe but it seems to be overactive in this particular case.

Eliminating the beliefs I cited does not turn off the "alarm", as it were. It makes everything work more efficiently and allows you to respond to situations more appropriately.

In other words, if you were literally being attacked, you would have more than two options and could respond in creative ways - you can use PSTEC to imagine those.

Additionally, whenever you dissolve your fears, you might be pleasantly surprised that they very rarely come to fruition anyway. Even if they did, as you have already dealt with them in mind, they show up differently and you would find new resources within yourself.

So, if you have CT2015 (http://bit.ly/ct2015desc) I would recommend that you use those. They have additional suggestions about safety. And you can blast the associated beliefs. Again, it is a matter of choice and my intention is not go dictate what you must do, but providing a context of what is possible.

Best Regards,

Paul  :)




Paul McCabe - PSTEC Advanced Practitioner
http://www.lifestyleforchange.com

Please contact me anytime if you want any assistance in utilising PSTEC to help you live a life of tremendous freedom & possibility.

Recreate yourself with PSTEC.

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PhotoguyOC

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Re: Phobia being around loud and verbally aggressive people
« Reply #10 on: September 06, 2018, 09:38:04 AM »
Thanks Paul and Brian for the good information, I'm going to keep going on this.  I like Brian's idea of nibbling away at the edges of my fear as it doesn't seem like such a large "jump" to my subconscious.  I will start using PTQT on installing positive beliefs.  I also really like Paul's analogy of a smoke detector that's set too sensitive as this is definitely how I feel.  I can recall dozens of times in my life where I first thought a person or situation was very dangerous only to find out that I could not have been more wrong, which was pleasantly embarrassing, I suppose  ::)

Brian

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Re: Phobia being around loud and verbally aggressive people
« Reply #11 on: September 06, 2018, 09:40:26 AM »
To Paul's point a few positive suggestions to install that would likely create enough of a shift to allow you to operate more freely:

When I'm attacked I'll be absolutely calm and relaxed now
When I'm in danger I'll be absolutely safe and secure now
When I'm threatened I'll be really safe and relaxed now
Anytime I see trouble I'll be completely relaxed now
Things are not as dangerous as they seem anymore now
Things are not as bad as they seem anymore now

« Last Edit: September 06, 2018, 09:42:06 AM by Brian »
If you think it, feel it or say it...PSTEC it!
Book a session: https://goo.gl/2VxCUa
Tools I use: Clicktracks (Basic, EEF, 2015) Accelerators, Positive, Positive Extra, Negative, Belief Blasters, Cascade Release, No More Anxiety, No More Anger, Anger Loop, PTSD Loop, Stop Smoking, Think & Grow Rich


 



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