Top Common Fears – What Scares You the Most?
Fear is a basic human emotion that we all experience in our lives. I asked my family and friends to tell me about what scares them the most and discovered that many of them share the same common fears.
But what one person might find terrifying, another might find thrilling. Some examples include skydiving, roller coasters, or thunderstorms. So I compiled a list of the Top 15 Common Fears (not in any particular order) and added my own personal commentary just for fun. How do you relate?Are you afraid of spiders, snakes, or clowns? Here are the Top 15 Common Fears among adults. Did yours make the list? What are YOU afraid of? Click To Tweet
Top 15 Common Fears (with links that might help)
1. Fear of Dying (Thanatophobia)
Whether it’s via accident, murder, sickness, or natural causes, the thought of death is naturally very scary to most of us. Nobody knows what happens after death and this is understandably terrifying.
2. Losing a Loved One (also called Thanatophobia)
It is natural to worry and fear for our loved ones. They are our world and the thought of life without them is very scary. Some things are just out of our control and we can only do so much to protect the ones we love. This is why it’s so important to cherish the time we have with them now.
3. Spiders (Arachnophobia)
Yes, they can bite. Yes, some of them are poisonous. Personally I think spiders are cool. They eat other bugs and most of the time, they just sit there minding their own business. But if they start crawling towards me or my family, then we have a problem.
4. Snakes (Ophidiophobia)
Many people are afraid of snakes. If you are a city dweller, you probably will not come in contact with snakes very often unless you run into Alice Cooper, of course. But if you live in the desert or wilderness where snakes live naturally you should definitely be vigilant.
5. Heights (Ophidiophobia)
Some people get a kick out of jumping out of airplanes. I know I get a weird feeling in the pit of my stomach just watching those videos of people walking on the sides of tall buildings. I get that they find it exciting, but seriously? Why risk your life on purpose?
6. Confinement (Claustrophobia)
The fear of having no escape or being enclosed in small space can throw people into a full blown anxiety attack. I know I freak out a little bit when my kid goes to those play places with little tunnels for them to crawl through – just small enough for a child. One time he got scared and the only way out was the equally confining tunnel slide. And guess who had to go and fetch him? Yeah, we have no plans of going back anytime soon.
7. Public Speaking (Glossophobia)
Many people have a fear of speaking in public. It’s a form of performance anxiety in which a person becomes very concerned that they will look foolish and maybe even have a melt down in front of others. Fortunately, there are several ways to alleviate this phobia such as therapy, courses, and even social groups like Toastmasters, where you can practice speaking in front of others who have the same fear as you.
8. The Dark (Nyctophobia)
When you can’t see what’s in front of you, your mind can take over and come up with all kinds of scary things that could be lurking in the dark. You never know what is going to pop out at you when you least expect it. It could just be a clown!
9. Clowns (Coulrophobia)
Clown costumes exaggerate facial features and body parts such as eyes, noses, and hands and feet. This can often be construed as disturbing or scary. Maybe in the 50s, they were considered funny. But for us Gen Xers, the movie Poltergeist ruined all that by featuring an evil clown that grabbed a little boy and tried to drag him under the bed. Also the serial killer, John Wayne Gacy used to kidnap and murder children and that was no laughing matter. I think people who dress as clowns have a few screws loose.
10. Cockroaches (Katsaridaphobia)
Nope! I hate them so much, I don’t even want to post a photo of one. And if you are afraid of cockroaches too, you won’t want to click on that link. You’ve been warned.
11. Flying (Aviophobia)
There is something about being a thousand miles up in the air in a highly explosive tin can that freaks me out. Maybe it’s the lack of control, but if anything goes wrong, there is nothing you can do about it. I am not a huge traveler and I try to avoid flying as much as possible.
12. The Ocean (Thalassophobia)
The ocean is such a huge mass of the unknown. You have a lot of things to contend with when you are going in the ocean. Personally, I am afraid of getting caught in the undertow and drowning. But there are other things to be scared of in the ocean such as fish, whales, and of course man-eating sharks.
13. Sharks (Galeophobia)
Even though you can be completely safe on land, there are some people who have a serious fear of sharks. But did you know that shark attacks are pretty rare? In fact, the odds of being attacked by a shark are 1 in 11.5 million. More people die of car accidents and bee stings, than from being attacked by a shark.
14. Failure (Atychiphobia)
Sometimes the fear of failure is so overwhelming that it keeps people from living their daily lives. But you are never going to succeed if you don’t try right?
15. Needles (Trypanophobia)
A fear of needles is not necessarily a fear of the needle itself. It’s usually the pain that is caused by the needle that scares people. It is unfortunate though because for some, the fear of needles is so crippling that it keeps people from seeking important medical treatment and is a leading cause of premature deaths.
The list of common fears is pretty infinite. In fact, there are still some uncommon fears out there that they haven’t even given a name to yet. See mine below…
What Scares ME the most?
Being eaten alive. I can’t think of anything worse than being eaten alive. Except maybe being buried alive. Ok, I really can’t decide.
Wet toilet seats. Come on, people. If you sprinkle when you tinkle, please be sweet and wipe the seat.
Ghosts. Even though I love watching ghost shows and hearing ghost stories, I have a tremendous fear of ghosts. I would probably pass out if I ever came in contact with one.
Being Tickled. Seriously, don’t even joke! I will probably cry.
Being tickled by a ghost = instant death for me.
Videos of people popping zits, breaking bones, or vomiting. Why would anyone want to see this? This is why I had to stop watching Tosh.0.
Throwing up. You know that feeling you get when your throat starts to close up and you know the inevitable is coming? Yeah, it’s pretty terrifying.
People sticking their bare feet on the dashboard or even worse out the window. Eww! I get that you want to be comfortable, but really nobody wants to see that.
Yellow nail polish. Just why? It makes you look like you have Cirrhosis of the liver.
Millenials using speech I don’t understand. Maybe “it me” but “TBH” “I can’t even” handle it. I get that your “Bae” is “perf” but you seriously you guys sound so stupid! I get that I’m just old, but Bae is Danish for POOP, people!
Getting spit on when someone’s talking. Say it, don’t spray it. Respect my personal space.
The US presidential election. But then again, who isn’t?
June bugs. These flying tanks are one of the banes of my existence. You can hear them coming from a mile away and they are blind so they insist on flying into your windows and doors. My hubby tried to kill one with a bat and that sucker still lived. True story!
Bees. I know they are dying out and are vital to life on this planet. But they sting and they fly! And wasps. What are they good for anyway except being jerks. Go away.
Giant, warm, soft fresh baked chocolate chunk cookies. I love them so much, but they have as many calories as a meal. I’m scared of them, because I can’t control myself around them. So please just do me a favor and keep your cookie away from me!
Duck Dynasty Beards. Geeze, can we please stop with the beards? They are not luxurious, they look like pubes on your face.
My son when he wakes up in the morning. It’s scary because it’s unpredictable. What kind of mood will he be in today? Bad? Of course. Ok, maybe it’s not that unpredictable. But still scary nonetheless.
Do you agree with this list of common fears? What scares you the most? Leave me a comment and let me know!
Disclosure: I was not compensated for writing this post, but it does contains affiliate links which means I may be compensated a small amount if you click-through and purchase. Full disclosure policy here.**