What Is Fear And What Causes It?

1520 words - 6 pages

Fear is something that large amounts of people have encountered at least once at some point in their lives. It has been said to have caused a variety of outcomes, many of them being largely negative. Therefore, it is a common human response to react to fear by counteracting it with positivity and/or success. The idea people have of what fear is depends on the person. In the article “How Fear Works”, for example, fear is defined as a “chain reaction in the brain that starts with a stressful stimulus and ends with the release of chemicals” (Layton 1). The website “Psychology Today” defines fear another way, calling it “a vital response to physical and emotional danger” ("Fear Paranoia”). There are several other definitions people have on the term fear as well but however people define fear, there is usually an act of trying to defeat the fear(s) that people encounter.

The main problem many people have about the emotion called fear is the profound impact it has on their lives. Often, when people feel the emotion of fear, it causes poor judgment and/or decision-making on their parts. Many people do things they would not normally do when in an uncomfortable situation. That course of action a person may resort to may not even be logical. The result of this is that an irreversibly terrible outcome may occur in somebody’s life and/or that person’s close ones’ lives. It is the often negative outcome that results from fear that causes many people to attempt to eliminate this emotion that they consider to be negative and destructive to their lives.

There are several factors that attribute to the fear humans feel. One of them is the atmosphere people are in. In the environment of a workplace, for example, many of the people involved in the working atmosphere have several fears that are work-related. The most common and frightening fear people have related to work is losing their jobs, which would in turn cause them to not be able to have money to support themselves and/or their families. These fears end up playing a huge part in their lives at work (or at home) and the result of the fears a person has towards the potential outcomes in his or her life is that they could control the whole way that he or she lives his or her life (Berns).

Another cause for people having fear is the past experiences they have had. Generally, if something bad has happened to somebody, they try to forget about it and/or they try to make sure it never happens again. However, in doing so, they still have a subconscious fear that something similar to the terrible event they’ve experienced may somehow manage to happen again, especially if there are a few similarities between the past event and the current situation. For example, if a man had surgery for his heart to perform better and he nearly died, he may be very reluctant to ever have surgery to his heart or any other body part(s) again.

Another more debatable reason people have fear inserts the claim that humans may...

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