Some Nerve

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Can reading a book make you less afraid? Can it make you more willing to face your fears? Can it teach you something about yourself?

Yes and no. I’m always a sucker for these types of books and while reading them they help me but this one I was unsure of from the start. Patty Chang Anker is a good writer though (I have never looked at her blog before picking up this book) she’s doing this for herself and her kids and luckily she makes the book a bit of a breeze to read especially through certain chapters. I have no fear of riding a bike. I kicked my fear of public speaking a few years ago when I realized new clothes always made me feel better. Heights? More a paranoid fear of the fact that occasionally I consider seeing if I could fly. She’s deals a lot with water here to. Swimming, surfing, diving. Honestly I don’t even know if I’m afraid of water mostly I’m in different to it.

Death? Huge fear for me and to be honest it’s probably the root cause behind most of my fears. A book definitely can’t help you with that and that chapter is mostly about living well which is good but pretty basic advice.

I am however terrified of driving. I can manage certain drives but the extent of my fear is that I have lived and driven in Southern California for nearly ten years and managed to do so without getting on a freeway! Yeah, me! I also try to avoid right turns and parking between two cars which is not as easy as it sounds. The book actually did help me! The chapter concerning other people’s car crashes also included some excellent teaching tips and I’m currently trying to find an instructor near me. It made sense. I mean I’ve always been an anxious driver I was last to get my license as a teenager and yeah my teachers not that great and my family of excellent drivers… Well, I love them but they only tended to make me more anxious.

I would recommend this book. It may not deal with your fears in particular (for me it’s missing: spiders, poison and enclosed spaces) but it definitely made me think about some of the reasons behind my fears and after reading it while I do not have a real desire about the spider thing or the poison thing I’ve actually been a little more comfortable behind the wheel and at least has me telling myself it’s time to get out there a bit more and have adventures instead of sitting around being afraid.

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