What Is Anthropophobia?
Fear of people is a common human emotion. There are many reasons why one might have fear of other humans: they may be strangers or acquaintances; they may be perceived as threatening because of their physical characteristics (e.g., size, age, race); or they may be feared due to some characteristic about them which makes them seem dangerous (e.g., their mannerisms). Some examples of these types of fears include being afraid of heights, spiders, snakes, and insects. Other fears are less obvious such as fear of public speaking or driving.
It is important to note that not all fears are based on real life threats. For example, fear of germs is often exaggerated and irrational, but it still exists. Another reason why some people experience fear is due to cultural influences. For example, many cultures do not view certain behaviors as socially acceptable.
Thus, these individuals may feel uncomfortable around others who exhibit these behaviors.
The fear of people is usually experienced when there is a threat to oneself or someone else. For instance, if someone were to attack you while you are walking down the street, your fear would likely increase since you would perceive yourself as being in danger. People also experience fear when they feel that someone is going to harm them or their loved ones. For example, you may experience anxiety when someone you know threatens to hurt you.
Managing Fear of People
It is important to manage fear of people since extreme levels of fear can be very disruptive to a person’s life. For instance, if you have an intense fear of a specific person, it may prevent you from engaging in certain activities. In the case of scopophobia, the fear of people looking at you may prevent you from going out in public or other crowded places. Additionally, fear may prevent you from interacting with others since you may always feel like they are judging you.
There are several ways to manage fear of people. One way of dealing with this fear is to try and overcome it. In other words, you must expose yourself to the thing that you are afraid of such as people or situations. For instance, if you are afraid of flying and this fear is preventing you from taking a trip that you’ve wanted to take, you should try and get over this fear by taking a few short flights first before going on an extended flight.
Another way to manage your fear of people is to try and hide from them. For instance, if you are afraid to go to certain places because of potential ridicule, find other places to go instead where you do not have as much exposure to others. You can also improve your self-esteem and feel good about yourself in order to reduce your fear of being around people.
Seeking professional help is also another way to deal with a fear of people. In this case, a psychiatrist or psychologist can provide you with medicines which can alleviate your fear. You can also talk to psychotherapist who can assist you in coping with your fear.
The last way of dealing with a fear of people is to change your mindset about them. For instance, if you have a fear of people judging you, try and look at the situation from a different perspective.
Are they really judging you?
Probably not. Most people are too worried about themselves to worry about you.
The fear of people is natural to a degree for most of us. For some, however, this fear can be so extreme that it prevents them from leading a normal life. If you experience a great deal of fear around others or you are currently suffering from scopophobia, seek professional help in order to manage and get over these fears. You can also try the methods listed above in order to manage your fears as well.
Sources & references used in this article:
Fear of Humans by Bears and Other Animals (Anthropophobia): How Much is Natural? by SF Stringham, LL Rogers – 2017 – bearstudy.org
Anthropophobia: An old and typical Japanese neurosis, its conceptual transition and clinical disappearance by Y Tanaka – International Jungian Conference, Taipei, 2013 – tip.org.tw
A method of instruction in psychotherapy by T Kora – Jikeikai Medical Journal, 1968 – thirtythousanddays.org