The fear of balloons is known as globophobia and for people living with this kind of phobia, they typically avoid any proximity to balloons. They also avoid social events or gatherings where there might be balloons. They struggle to go to parties or even restaurants where they may encounter balloons because they’ve developed a deep phobia of the balloons popping. Even the sound of them squeaking or just the feeling of them is enough to prompt a reaction.
How does a fear of balloons develop?
There are many reasons for this phobia developing and it's usually caused early on in childhood. As healthy human beings, we all jump when we hear loud, unexpected noises but for most people growing up, as unpleasant as that is for us, we just learn to accept it as part of life.
However, for those living with a phobia of balloons, this is typically caused very early on in life. You might even remember the actual event, but this is typically caused when a balloon pops.
It makes us feel that horrible way on the inside, and within that moment, we usually conclude two things.
The first conclusion is: "oh my goodness, I NEVER want to feel like that again."
The second conclusion, which is more of an association. "It was the balloon that made me feel like this."
In that moment these two conclusions are formed.
This then develops into the protective behavioural strategy known as the phobic response.
We have essentially developed a fear of our own natural fear response.
This is where we begin to panic, because we've actually developed a fear of that element of surprise. Perceiving that we are out of control.
So it's not uncommon for people who also have a phobia of balloons to also have a phobia of champagne bottles popping. Fireworks at night, and other loud unexpected noises, such as doorbells ringing, are also connected.
The crux of this phobia is that we're not actually afraid of the balloon itself. We're afraid of how it makes us feel on the inside, we’re actually afraid of our own response.
Taking back control, regaining power
This is where we can begin to take our power back because you and I know we can't control all the balloons in the world. We certainly can't control all the children and their crazy ideas of what they want to do with balloons. However, what we can begin to control and change on the inside is that phobic response and that feeling.
This will naturally put an end to the catastrophizing worrisome thoughts that we may currently feel with balloons.
You see, it's more than just a phobia when we're living with a phobia of balloons, we miss out on so many opportunities.
We struggle to go to parties; we miss out on friends' birthdays and our own celebrations. We can't go to certain social gatherings, concerts, weddings, even some restaurants. This becomes life-limiting. So it's very important that we do something about this.
Exposure therapy is not the only solution
Some of the limiting beliefs that hold people back from finally getting help with this is that they believe the only way to overcome their phobia is through exposure therapy. Well, the truth is we can actually resolve a fear of balloons from the inside, let me explain.
Let us look at exposure therapy. This has the intention of changing that internal feeling with external experiences. The premise is, if I can experience this enough times then eventually I will release or let go of this fear on the inside and return to a feeling of safety and calm.
For many people living with this phobia, this causes a lot of stress in our body and in our minds.
Well, the good news is we can actually change this from the inside out, which means that we don't even need to actually experience balloons popping to resolve this phobia. We do this by changing the belief systems in your mind as well as the feelings in your body.
The moment we change this, your entire relationship to these very particular interactions completely changes and you're free!
Real-life resolution of phobia of balloons
So I want to give you an example of how these phobias are often caused:-
I remember working with a man in his 30s who had a very intense phobia of balloons. It was preventing him from going to parties, weddings, and gatherings. He didn't enjoy restaurants because he was always on edge, on high alert. Well, we began to explore what he was really afraid of.
During the session a memory came up, this memory was when he was a child and he was blowing up a balloon. He blew it up so much that it popped in his face, he experienced such an unexpected shock that he immediately burst into tears.
But not only did he burst into tears, his mother came round into the room and thought, with all her panic,
“are you OK? My son, is everything OK?!”
… and with all of her panic, he really did assume that he'd done something terribly wrong, like he had broken something important - he felt out of control and ashamed.
This feeling of out of control, shame, as well as the startling nature of all of this prompted him to conclude that he never wanted this to happen again.
Little did he know but he would spend the rest of his life, up until his 30s trying to avoid that feeling of out of control and the shame that he fell in that moment.
That's the thing, on the surface now, as an adult looking back on it, he could see, well, nothing happened. There was no big deal. He didn't break the expensive family heirloom or the much-treasured vase; he popped her very cheap balloon that was destined to pop any moment.
At that moment he stopped this, released this fear and childhood guilt and he was granted absolute liberation and freedom from this fear. Success!
Want to learn how we can help you eliminate your phobia for good?
We can do this without the stress of exposure therapy, coping strategies or tedious years of therapy.
The most extreme and lifelong phobias have been eliminated with this method.
You can find out more here: www.phobiatofreedom.com