There are many types of phobias, but one of the most common is the one involved fear of taking responsibility.
We will dedicate this article to collecting all the information related to this phenomenon so that the reader can know how this difficulty is generated, what characteristics it is associated with, what type of person is most likely to suffer and what is the treatment. suitable to solve. he.
What is the fear of responsibility?
The fear of responsibility is a pathology consisting of a phobia, that is to say an irrational fear, in this case before the mere idea of having to assume a situation in which the person is responsible for managing or taking charge of an item, task or person. This phobia is technically called hypengiophobia or hypengiaphobia, using the Greek word engys, which means narrow.
When a person suffers from fear of responsibility, faced with a circumstance posed by one of these possibilities, he will react with an evasive behavior which will also be visibly disproportionate, because the situation will not be objectively threatening. Moreover, the subject who experiences this reaction will not be able to explain why it happens to him, it just happens to him.
He will therefore not be able to voluntarily control his reaction, but it will be an automatic and uncontrollable response. of his body, which prepares his body for an imminent escape from what he considers an aversive situation and which therefore puts him in danger. In short, when faced with the option of taking responsibility for something, the person automatically runs away, not knowing why or not being able to do anything else.
Obviously, this type of reaction can lead to a serious imbalance for individuals who are afraid of responsibilities, because, as with all phobias, it is not a topic that they have chosen voluntarily. however, in other types of fears, for example fear of needles, the person is calm because this is not a situation that occurs frequently.
On the contrary, being afraid of responsibilities, the anguish that an event of this nature could occur at any time, because it is a much more plausible option in everyday life, even if we are talking about small responsibilities at scale.
Consequences of this phobia
Imagine for a second that you were transposed into the karmic world of Earl. Depending on when these fears arose, he might have had problems even in school, increasing the chances of dropping out of school prematurely. It would also have interfered with his immersion in the world of work, causing him difficulties both in accessing a first job and in promoting himself.
He might even be bothered just by making a date with another person, even if he was a friend. Obviously, experiencing such unpleasant reactions to such routine situations would lead to imbalance for the person which would affect their mood and could even trigger another set of pathologies.
Therefore, hypengiophobia or fear of responsibility is not a disorder to be taken lightly, because like all phobias, this could cause discomfort and serious harm to the life of the patient who suffers from itWith the difference that the triggers for these particular fears are much more abundant in people’s daily lives than those that give rise to other types of phobias.
Another risk faced by people who are afraid to take responsibility is that of make their fear more and more powerful, because the escape or delegation that they make so as not to have to face the situation acts as a reinforcement (They avoid discomfort) and make this response more likely in the future. But at the same time, in a more rational way, they generate anxiety in the person, because he is aware that it becomes more and more difficult for him to cope with the fear of responsibilities,
Types of fear of responsibility
We already know what the fear of responsibility is and the serious consequences that this pathology can have. Next, we will explore the different types that we can break down based on the characteristics of the situation causing the fear.
1. Fear of making mistakes
One of the main causes that trigger fear of responsibility in these people is the possibility of making a mistake.. This option automatically blocks them and scares them away from the situation, which for them represents the threatening stimulus.
2. Panic of not being up to the task
The second option has nothing to do with the possibility of being wrong, but refers to the fear of a not living up to what others expect of us. This anxiety results in a rejection of the situation, completely eliminating this hypothetical option, by not acting one way or the other.
3. Fear of being judged
Similar to the previous point, but with different nuances, there is also the fear that others will judge you for your behavior. For this reason, a person afraid of responsibilities will prefer to leave the site before running the risk of receiving a negative rating of their conduct.
4. Terror of losing control
These people will also not feel comfortable in situations that are beyond their control because these are moments that generate stress in the face of the hypothesis that involve taking responsibility on their part. This would be the fourth type of fear of responsibility that we might encounter.
5. Popular yeast dread
Finally, the typology that also causes discomfort in being people refers to the scenario in which the individual in question is qualified as unpopular. It’s a variant of the fear of being judged, With the difference that in this case the concrete fear is to receive a judgment which categorizes him as irrelevant or not at all popular.
By avoiding social situations due to his fear of responsibility, he in turn will fear that he will not be popular, thus running the risk of entering a vicious circle, which could increase the anxiety he suffers from.
How to overcome this psychological problem
The most important question that will be asked of anyone who suffers from this disorder is: How can I overcome the fear of responsibility? As with most health problems, in this mental case there is no quick fix. But the good news is that phobias have a good therapeutic prognosis. Therefore, the first and fundamental advice is to have the help of an expert psychologist.
While your clinical judgment is essential in making a decision, here are some of the courses of action you could take.
1. Practice relaxation techniques
A person who suffers from the effects of anxiety which so often scares him, will have to find the tools which will help him to decrease this physiological activation in order to begin to find a state of neutrality. A technique widely used for this for its ease of learning and its effectiveness, is that of deep breathing..
You can also resort to more complex techniques such as meditation or mindfulness, which require more training.
2. Gradual exposure
In order to cope with the fear of responsibility, the therapist will guide you on a path of controlled exposure to stimuli that frighten you. For this, the affected person will be the one who develops a list of situations that cause you more or less panic, so that you can overcome them one by one gradually, Without causing an overflow in the patient’s emotions.
It is a delicate procedure and therefore should always be taken care of by an expert in psychology as it is a behavioral technique that requires training to be effective. Such a badly used tool could be counterproductive by causing the aversive stimulus to approach too quickly.
3. Cognitive work
In addition to physiological conditions and behaviors, it is important to devote time to work on the wrong thoughts of the person who is afraid of responsibilities. These have to do with the types we saw in the previous point, relating to the fear of being judged, of not being tall, of making mistakes, etc.
With the help of the psychologist, the patient will be able to rationalize situations and overcome these negative thoughts.
4. Self-esteem work
Eventually, it will have to boost the person’s self-esteem, because after so many negative experiences and with these kinds of thoughts that we were talking about, it is very likely that they have weakened.
- André, C. (2005). Psychology of fear: fears, anxieties and phobias. Cairo
- Capafons, JI (2001). Effective psychological treatments for specific phobias. Psychotheme.
- Orgilés, M., Rosa, AI, Santacruz, I., Méndez, X., Olivares, J., Sánchez-Meca, J. (2002). Well-established and very effective psychological treatments: Behavioral therapy for specific phobias. Behavioral psychology.