Killer Clowns Newcastle

Killer Clowns Newcastle

Is the ‘clown scaring craze’ harmless pranks or could this trend be provoking phobias?

The ‘clown scaring craze’ that is sweeping the globe has reached the North East of England. Throughout America and the UK there have been reports of menacing masked characters and people dressed as clowns leaping out of bushes, chasing people and even schoolchildren have been targeted. Is this scaring trend harmless fun or something more menacing?

Coulrophobia

For those that have a fear of clowns this is no joke. Coulrophobia (the fear of clowns) is a well-established psychological condition and like any other irrational phobia it is no laughing matter. Phobias often develop during the a child’s early years of development. A child’s experience of the visual world is very different to that of adults. Unlike adults, children retain information from their senses separately and, therefore, they perceive the visual world differently. This can greatly affect how a child perceives an unfamiliar face. If we try and see a clowns face through the eyes of a young child; a child is unable to dissociate between the clowns’ excessive makeup and the person behind the mask; therefore, the child can perceived the clown as real. From this point of view what children fear may not be so irrational after all.

Phobias that develop during childhood and adolescence are often the result of a frightening event or stressful situation. For example, if an adult has a fear of spiders (arachnophobia) a child may also develop the same fear. Or a young person may develop claustrophobia later on in life if he or she was trapped in an enclosed space. Other factors, such as having parents who suffer from anxiety, may also affect the way a young person deals with stress later on in life.

Phobia Counselling Newcastle

When experiencing a phobia the physiological symptoms can be severe and can cause a state of panic. Difficulties in breathing, tightness in the chest, rapid heartbeat, perspiring, nausea and panic attacks are all common symptoms and is often a result of a felt sense reaction to a past learnt early childhood experience. In severe cases the adoption of reassurance and safety seeking behaviour can greatly affect functioning which in turn can lead to anxiety and depression. In many cases avoiding the object of fear is enough to control the problem; however, this may not always be possible with certain phobias; for example, a fear of flying or a social phobia. In this instance, professional help maybe needed. Behavioural Therapy and Mindfulness are effective approaches that enable awareness of the interaction between the mind and body; therefore, enabling clarity and the emotional resilience to respond to fear in ways that are non-reactive.

Because the nature of the creepy clown scaring trend is to provoke shock and fear and because this interaction is so far outside of our social norm, this trend could potentially cause deep psychological trauma, particularly for young children and people that suffer from coulrophobia. Halloween will soon be upon us, maybe there is a time and place for scary costumes and pranks. I would be really interested in your thoughts, please comment below.

If you have enquiry about Glister’s counselling service or if you would like to make an appointment, please do not hesitate to get in touch. For details on how to make contact please click HERE.

Stress Awareness

Stress Awareness

Stress can impact on you in many ways and can have a significant effect on your emotional, mental and physical health. A certain amount of stress can be healthy and can aid your productivity; however, experiencing high levels of stress regularly can be detrimental to your personal life, your professional life, and your overall well-being. To assess the effects stress is having on your emotional health and functioning please click on the link and complete the self-assessment survey.

What causes stress?

Needs

If we take a look at Maslow’s five stage model which simplistically demonstrates what is needed for an individual to be able to fulfil their full potential; what is clear is if any of the five needs are affected a person’s ability to self-actualise is greatly obstructed and consequently could create distress.

For example, if your basic needs were affected by illness or financial issues this then could present the threat of not being able to provide food and shelter which then could potentially affect your need for security. Also, if there were relationship issues this could affect your need for a sense of belonging, which in turn could greatly affect your self-esteem and confidence. Therefore, these five fundamental stages are necessary for you to achieve your potential and feel at your most content and happiest.

Trying to address and change the areas of your life that are affecting you can feel at times impossible. Often people are not aware of how unhappy they are in a particular area because the alternative may feel too overwhelming, yet there are still lots of practical things you can do to manage the amount of day-to-day pressure that you are under.

  • Time management is the foundation for there to be balance between your working hours, your personal life and for you to have time for rest and play.
  • Being able to assertively communicate how you are feeling with others and being able to say ‘no’ is the key to healthy relationships.
  • Identifying your triggers and mindfulness practice can help you to focus on the present and can also help you to not get drawn into mind chatter or drama related behaviour.
  • Looking after your physical health by exercising and healthy eating can help lessen the impact of stress on your overall mental health.

When you identify, address and make changes to the areas of your life that you are unhappy in. You will build upon your emotional resilience, which will give you the ability to adapt and bounce back when something difficult happens in your life.

If you have enquiry about Glister’s counselling service or if you would like to make an appointment, please do not hesitate to get in touch. For details on how to make contact please click HERE.