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Disney Days and Defeating Fear

by Dr. Leisha

A couple of years ago, I went to Disney World with a friend. Clearly not knowing me as well as I had hoped, she asked me to ride Splash Mountain with her. In case you don’t know, I am terribly afraid of heights! What happened? I rode Splash Mountain with her. At the beginning of the ride, she side-eyed me as my anxiety took flight. I softly whispered mantras to myself, engaging in self-talk such as, “I am going to be O.K. I am safe. In 2 minutes, this will all be over.” What happened next? The “drop” wasn’t so bad. It wasn’t nearly as high as I had imagined in my mind! When my friend and I got off the ride, I offered to go again.

Mindful Reflection: What was your Splash Mountain? What was an experience that, when unknown, seemed very fearful and uncomfortable? Which coping skills, such as self-talk, did you use to get through it? Can you apply those coping skills to other unknown situations? Be brave, and cope on!

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