What is fear?

Todd Farchione, PhD
We all experience fear. It’s a natural emotion that’s essential for our survival. Fear (and the emotional part of the brain from which it originates) is designed to protect us from danger. But even good emotions can sometimes go bad or run a little wild.

For some, fear occurs more frequently or intensely than it should, or it happens in situations where it’s less adaptive or just doesn’t seem to make sense. Fears and phobias can stop us from doing things that are important to us, and can prevent us from living to our potential.

Mastering our fears can be a very difficult task but is well worth the effort. Through this process we become stronger and more confident. As we free ourselves from our fears, we become better able to live in accordance with our values, to explore new possibilities for our lives and to develop into the person we would most like to be.

This content originally appeared on doctoroz.com.
Dr. Kathleen Hall
Preventive Medicine
Fear is the most powerful emotion we experience next to love. Fear is at the root of greed, anger, hate, shame, envy, worry, and victimization. All of the great spiritual and religious leaders and their texts tell us fear will impede your full potential in your mind, body and soul. Fear is a poison if you desire to live a life to true happiness. Fear cannot be avoided as long as we are human, but the four roots teach us healthy ways to deal with our everyday fears. Fear creates stress chemicals that when released into the body can create illness.
A Life in Balance: Nourishing the Four Roots of True Happiness

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A Life in Balance: Nourishing the Four Roots of True Happiness

Nautilus Book Awards Winners for 2007 (category: Self-Help/Psychology/ Personal Growth) "Like many people, Kathleen Hall found that despite great success and material wealth, she had yet to identify...

Continue Learning about Emotions



Medical science recognizes a mind-body connection and that your emotions may affect your body's physical health. Being down or depressed can cause fatigue, aches, and pains. If you are having problems and are also stressed, it's a ...

good idea to let your doctor know. This can be part of the diagnosis. Seeking an emotional balance and developing some resistance to bad feelings can be an important step to improved health. Techniques to improve your emotional health can range from medication to talking with an advisor, eating healthfully or exercising.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.