One thing that can hold people back from enjoying life to the fullest is fear, especially when this fear is so intense that it is considered a phobia. Many times, the fears that hold people back are only there because of the lack of education oneself on what they are afraid of. Throughout my childhood and adulthood, I struggled with an intense and irrational fear of spiders. It was very difficult to have the anxiety of seeing a spider because, many times, it prevented me from enjoying nature and even certain areas of my own home. For example, at some point, I was extremely fearful of going into my garage or backyard because I was afraid that I would come across a spider. My arachnophobia became such a massive obstacle in my life, which made me realize that if I didn't work on getting rid of my phobia, it would only keep getting worse, and it would eventually affect my children as well, so for a few years, I worked extremely hard to educate myself on spiders, especially the spiders whose habitat is in the area I live in. Although it was challenging to research and learn about a topic that brought many tears and anxieties to me, I now see the benefits of working on healing myself, and I would like to encourage everyone to find the courage to work on getting rid of any phobias that are interfering with their lives.
As I mentioned, working on getting rid of my arachnophobia was not something that happened overnight—It took a few years for me to look at a spider without panicking and crying. My journey to getting rid of my phobia started by allowing myself to think about spiders, which initially was very difficult for me. Just thinking about spiders would bring me to tears, so I started slowly by only thinking about spiders in short intervals. When I started feeling more comfortable, I began researching spiders that lived in my area. I would read articles on spiders, and I would look at pictures. I remember the day I finally felt comfortable enough to zoom in on a spider picture and study what the spider looks like from a closer angle. After a few years of doing this, I eventually became comfortable looking at a spider in real life from a distance. I would stand there and stare at the spider, realizing that the spider had zero intent to harm me.
I still have a fear of spiders, and I will probably never get to a point where I will feel comfortable if I know that a spider is near me, but at this point, I would not call my fear a phobia—it doesn't affect my daily life anymore, and that makes me feel free. By learning more about spiders, we can realize how beautiful and unique they are, and it makes us know that unless we give them a reason to feel threatened by us, they will not harm us. If you are struggling with arachnophobia or any other phobia, please find help and work on getting rid of it. Today, we have many resources where we can find information on spiders, and even people on TikTok dedicate their content to educating their viewers on spiders.
Interesting spider-centered TikTok accounts include: @tiana_thebuglady and @Venomman20