Change is inevitable. The weather will change. The type of automobiles available will change. Hair color will change. We live in a world that is bent on change. Most work to adapt the changes around them even when they may wonder if the change is actually good. This is as true of politics as it is the way in which we may shop. While apprehension may be normal there can be a fear associated with change that seems neither rational or desired. This fear is known as Metathesiophobia.
The fear of change is not necessarily a personal favoring of all things old while rejecting all things made new. An individual with this fear may simply not want anything that is different than what they already have. These individuals may have a comfort zone that they do not wish to disrupt by bringing anything unfamiliar into their lives.
What Causes Metathesiophobia?
This fear can come about due to personal emotional distress. For instance if you experienced multiple life changes in a short amount of time this may provide the stimulus for this fear. People who experience the death of someone close, divorce, job termination or moving they can become overwhelmed which can lead to anxiety and panic attack. This scenario can easily become Metathesiophobia.
If an individual grew up in the home of someone who had this fear then the adults behavior in that home became the standard in which future fear is identified. When a parent or other trusted adult expresses profound fear it is very likely children in the home will express anxiety at the very least or even phobic tendencies as an outgrowth of the observed phobia.
Symptoms of Metathesiophobia
As you might expect, individuals with this fear may have severe social anxiety because they will enjoy the company of lifelong friends and may not wish to be introduced to any potentially new friends. They are not looking to replace items they currently own, and even the sight of new buildings may be troublesome to them.
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Other symptoms may also include…
- Air hunger
- Panic attacks
- Loss of control
- Feeling as if you are losing your mind
- Feeling as if no one understands
This phobic personality will have a strong aversion to anything that requires them to change an opinion or accept the changes that may be happening around them.
How to Overcome Metathesiophobia
An empathetic therapist may be helpful in guiding a metathesiophobe through the difficulties they encounter in the midst of change. This is important because this phobic personality may not be interested in getting help simply because it means a need to change.
There is nothing wrong with having an interest in the past and seeking to emulate it in the present, but this fear goes beyond an affection for an era and moves on to an unwillingness to work through change. This is why therapy may be the best course of action in dealing with this phobia.
The fear of change is also referred to as:
- Change fear
- Change phobia