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Top 10 Phobias Hardest to Avoid

VO: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Garrett Alden

Script written by Garrett Alden

Some fears you just can’t run from. From Object Placement, to Sounds, and Walking / Standing, you might be out of luck if you’re afraid of any of these. WatchMojo counts down the Top 10 Phobias Hardest to Avoid.

Special thanks to our user Mustafa Riaz for suggesting this idea! Check out the voting page at https://www.WatchMojo.comsuggest/top+10+phobias+hardest+to+avoid..


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Script written by Garrett Alden

Top 10 Phobias Hardest to Avoid

Some fears you just can’t run from. Welcome to and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Hardest Phobias to Avoid.

For this list, we’ll be looking at the fears and other anxiety-inducing sources that are the most difficult to keep away from.

#10: Object Placement

As it happens, some people are rather particular about where things are placed. Sometimes this trauma leads people to fear objects placed to the left or right side of them, especially if they favor a particular hand. Avoiding objects placed to one side or another can be very difficult, as everything is relative. Something’s going to be to the left or right of you, to some degree, no matter where you go. Left-handed or right-handed people are significantly easier to avoid. However, the former are much less common than the latter, while the latter can be circumvented by staying away from people altogether.

#9: Sounds

Noise is everywhere. Yet, it can strike fear into a lot of people. Loud sounds are certainly startling to most, but some of us find our pulses racing at even quieter reverberations. Blocking out sounds with soundproofed walls or noise-cancelling headphones are relatively simple ways to moderate sound intake, yet the complete absence of sound is more difficult to come by. To achieve that requires either deafening oneself, which can be a risky proposition, or a lack of atmosphere for sound to carry, which is likely to result in death. Silence may be golden, but it doesn’t come easily.

#8: Walking / Standing

As predominantly bipedal animals, we humans tend to require long periods of standing and/or walking about on our legs to get around. Yet, there are those who become distressed at either the sight of people performing these basic motor functions or of engaging in them themselves. For the first sort, isolation from the rest of humanity may be the only solution. However, people afraid of doing either of these things themselves have a few more options, as wheelchairs and other ambulatory aids are readily available in most countries.

#7: Defecation

Bodily waste is a necessity for living, yet for some, the prospect of relieving oneself can be very distressing, likely due to a bad or, ahem, uncomfortable experience. While avoiding the sight of others defecating is not especially difficult, as most of us like to keep our business private, going entirely without excreting oneself is a much trickier prospect. Surgical extraction of one’s solid waste is possible, but it would get rather expensive over a protracted period of time, so it would hardly be affordable for most. In the end, it may help to keep in mind the old saying – everybody poops.

#6: Light

Although darkness presents some challenges as well, its opposite is our choice for this spot. Sensitivity to light, as well as the fear of it, can be hard to overcome. Although the brightness inside one’s own home can be moderated and controlled, with dimmers and shades, the 12 hours or so a day that the sun is up will always provide some ambient light. Blinding oneself, either partially or completely is another possible solution, though it comes at the cost of one of a person’s senses. When the cost of avoiding your fear is going without sight or shutting yourself away, facing it may be preferable.

#5: Sleep

We’re getting into the really tough ones now! Sleep rests our minds and bodies and is an essential part of staying healthy and alive. However, some people fear the loss of control or consciousness brought about while we’re asleep. While there are some people who are afflicted with conditions that prevent slumber, it’s highly improbable that anyone afraid of it would also suffer from one of them. Instead, rest can be staved off with stimulants such as caffeine. That’s only a temporary solution, though, as exhaustion will always win out.

#4: Food

The fuel that keeps us all going, food is a basic necessity to continue living. While specific food fears are relatively easy to avoid by just avoiding the foods in question, eating and swallowing can cause anxiety in some people as well, likely due to past traumatic events or eating disorders. Going without food or nutrition entirely is only possible for around three weeks, give or take, and it’s hardly pleasant to endure. Alternatively, receiving nutrients intravenously is a possibility, but it’s not one that would be very cost effective for most people.

#3: Water

Water is everywhere, from most of Earth’s surface to making up the majority of our own bodies. Avoiding immersing oneself in standing bodies of water is quite easy, as is avoiding baths or other water-related cleaning activities - though the latter isn’t very hygienic. However, it’s much tougher trying to go without consuming water. Much like with food, humans can only go without H2O for a limited time – only three days, in the typical case. Direct water consumption can also be staved off by having it injected into the body directly, yet, again, this isn’t cheap, simple, or comfortable.

#2: Time

Our entries thus far have been conceivable to circumvent, but our last two entries are impossible to get away from. Time is a universal constant; it will always be until it stops - if it ever will. Those afraid of time are usually upset by its passage and what it means for their lives and those around them, although there are those who fear their perception of it as well. In the latter instance, avoiding clocks and other markers meant to keep track of our concept of time’s passage is a possibility. Nevertheless, even our inevitable deaths won’t stop time’s passage – only the fact that we are aware of it.

#1: Everything

What’s more difficult to get away from than time? Time and everything else that exists! This all-encompassing phobia is utterly inescapable for anyone who has it. Although it’s unlikely that anyone is afraid of absolutely everything, the fear of “all” things is usually built on a fear of a large number of common things, to the point where it feels as difficult to prevent or avoid as the extreme of the definition. Like time, everything in its totality is essentially unavoidable, unless one were to find a way to become, go to, or perceive…nothing.


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