The Art of Fear

Teresa Bacal
5 min readNov 26, 2020

5 Ways to Manage Purposely Created Fear

Photo by davide ragusa on Unsplash

Your chest feels tight. Your breathing gets shallow. You feel your heart beating faster. You feel a knot in the pit of your stomach. Your mind is racing. Your anxiety is rising. Perfect, someone or something has just triggered your fear response, just as they had planned.

Fear is a great manipulator and those in positions of power know it. Whether these people are heads of corporations, marketing firms, public figures, media or politicians, fear is an effective tool to create action. I call this Purposely Created Fear and it is currently at peak levels in today’s society.

Fear is pervasive in many American lives these days and for good reason. We are dealing with a political circus, a pandemic, an uncertain economy and upheaval in our streets. Fear can be used to propel you forward or to hold you back. How you recognize and address your fears will determine which way you go.

Fear comes in many forms, but I am not talking about phobias here. I am talking about the type of fear that is purposely created to cause a specific reaction to carefully contrived information. Information that moves you towards action that benefits the purveyor of that information.

That action may be to buy or do something right now or you will regret it. The goal may be to keep you from taking action because if you take action, it will cause harm to you or someone else. Fear can be overwhelming and repeated exposure to fear can have devastating mental or physical affects.

What exactly is fear? According to Merriam-Webster, fear is an unpleasant, often strong, emotion caused by anticipation or awareness of danger.

Fear manipulation today taps into 3 of the 5 fears we all share, per Psychology Today. These three fears are:

  1. Loss of Autonomy: The fear of being immobilized, paralyzed, restricted, enveloped, overwhelmed, entrapped, imprisoned, smothered, or otherwise controlled by circumstances beyond our control.
  2. Fear of Separation: The fear of abandonment, rejection, and loss of connectedness; of becoming a non-person — not wanted, respected, or valued by anyone else. The “silent treatment,” when imposed by a group, can have a devastating effect on its target.

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Teresa Bacal

Always looking for ways to Live Better | Addicted to Travel | Serial Entrepreneur | Outdoor Enthusiast | Event Consultant | www.JTGrey.com |