The reason is because the more we avoid them, the bigger, meaner, and scarier those triggers become. For example, if I don't go out to eat with friends because I know it could cause me to panic, then it will be twice as hard to go out the next time too. And even harder the time after that. Eventually I would never go out at all. And that is how agoraphobia starts.
Sometimes you hear about people that can't leave their homes. They haven't stepped outside in years. This is an extreme case of agoraphobia but it has to start somewhere, and for them it starts because they decide its too uncomfortable and scary to leave home, or their safe zone. Over time of giving into those fears, they loom so large and take over everything else and before you know it you have lost all control.
Avoiding your fears is never going to make them go away, it just makes them worse.
Truth be told I am still avoiding some of my fears. I avoid driving with other people in the car with me. Its too stressful and I would rather have the other person drive my car with me as the passenger then have to do the driving. Eventually someday I may work on this, but for now its not hampering my everyday life to where I can't function. Its more of a quirk I guess. But eating in public is a real trial for me that I do avoid, even now at times.
The important thing to remember is you don't have to take it all on all at once. Break it down into littler steps that appear more achievable. I don't go out with all of my coworkers for lunch because I would rather just eat alone at my desk. I only go out with them on special occasions and those prove to be difficult for me. I want to work on that as well. But you have to start somewhere and the end goal can be far away. You can take as small a step forward as you choose. So for now I go to special occasions so that I don't avoid the fear altogether. Maybe someday I'll be more proactive about going out to lunch with them. That can even be broken down into smaller steps. I can go to lunch, pick the food up, and bring it back to the office. Believe it or not even that step is hard for me right now. But if I do that often enough, it will lose its power as being fearful and I can move onto another step. Avoiding your fears and exposing yourself to them on purpose are two different steps and should each be done when you feel ready.
Give me some examples of some of your triggers and I will try my best to come up with smaller steps that you can start to stop avoiding. Or throw out some of your own so we can all see some other examples.
Discovering Your Triggers
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