Thalassophobia or the phobia of being in or around a water body is one of the most common phobias present globally.
As we said, this is a very common fear, and it only aggravates people who cannot swim. But, how can I expect a person to swim, if he has thalassophobia?
If you’re one of those who fear water bodies, you can either live in this fear and avoid swimming completely or face your fear and come out stronger. In fact, it becomes all the more important to learn to swim, when you know you fear it the most.
Besides, thalassophobia doesn’t mean that you cannot swim. No one can swim once they are thrown in water. The process to learn swimming will be similar for anyone, be it someone with thalassophobia, or without. You might find it difficult in the initial days especially due to your fear but it will only get easier.
All that being said, below, I’ve compiled a list of 5 ways with which you can overcome your fear of swimming.
1. Talk to yourself
Well, to be honest, most people are so afraid of water that they don’t want to think about learning to swim. There are very few people who are water babies and really enjoy swimming.
However, people suffering from a “phobia” is completely different. Well, it is very difficult to diagnose whether you have thalassophobia or not, but let us just say, you aren’t afraid of swimming, but of drowning, like most people.
To help overcome it, you need to dive deep into this fear and listen to your internal dialogue. Is it because you were near to drowning once before in your life? Or is it because you have come across people who have had such experiences? Write your thoughts down, and this will help you understand the crux of your fear.
2. Unlearn and restructure
Clearly, what you have learned about swimming in your past is not helping you in the present and future. So, before going ahead, you need to let go of that. How do you do so? You unlearn what you learned in the past. This is more difficult than it may sound, but you have to do it to finally overcome your swimming fear.
Next, you need to restructure your thoughts about swimming. You need to learn that it is not dangerous. In fact, it is a necessity. You can do this, and you will – just keep reminding yourself of this and you will win!
3. Change of perspectives
Don’t look at swimming, as an exercise, or job, that needs to be learned and done. Don’t look at it as something tiring, boring, and gruesome. Look at it as play. Look at it as a sport that people enjoy and have other benefits as well.
When you shift your perspective, your will to learn will be at your maximum, further making things easier.
4. Hire a coach
The best part about swimming is that people of all age groups, across seasons, can learn it. So, this ensures you are not alone, hence bringing in a sense of comfort. Further, it also makes it very easy for you to find a coach, or join a swimming school where you can learn and train under professionals.
Now, these professionals deal with amateurs like you on a daily basis each with a similar kind of fear clogging their minds. They exactly know how to teach you, be it with life jackets, or swimming tubes.
5. Practice and visualization
At this stage, after you have been through all the above steps, it all boils down to your practice sessions. Your coach can only teach you; he/she can’t do it for you. And once you start, you will realize that it is not as difficult as it seemed sometime ago.
You can pair your practice sessions with visualization. Visualize for just 10 minutes a day and you will see the difference in your progress yourself!
Remember, what comes easy, goes easy. Good things take time. So trust the process and the results will follow. That being said, keep practicing!