Imagine the scene. You've booked your dream holiday to the Dominican Republic, you're scrolling through images of the resort to build excitement and anticipation and you stumble across images of tame, proud peacocks parading about and strutting up to holiday makers with abandon. You have a phobia of birds and bang, it hits. Panic rising from the pit of your stomach to the back of your throat, heart pounding, nauseous! You're thinking about cancelling the holiday out of sheer terror.
Now, you always knew there were birds on the island but the idea of tame birds approaching you unbidden is more than you can cope with. It's irrational, illogical - but that's the very nature of phobias.
This is a real client, we had one session after which she went home to play with her husbands pet poultry - yes he keeps birds, ironic I know. She messaged me:
"Hi andrew I don't think I need another appointment I feel completely okay now with the thought of going on holiday and I'm not bothered about the birds at all - it's weird but I don't feel anxious one bit! I'm also loads better with the bantam chickens and ducks at home. Thank you so much for your help, Katherine".