I've had emetophobia since I was 19 years old
Gender: Female Age group: 25-35
Jenny* was suffering with emetophobia which is a pathological fear of vomiting. She had already purchased the Cure Your Emetophobia & Thrive workbook and had taken herself through the programme (self-paced).
Jenny felt the reading she’d done and the completion of exercises had reduced the impact emetophobia was having on her life but not as much as she wanted. She contacted me as a Licensed Thrive Consultant to help her overcome her emetophobia 100%.
She had a very high Desire for Control which meant Jenny was avoiding lots of activities that she believed were "dangerous".
Some of these included eating in public, leaving her workplace if someone said they felt sick, always looking for exits when out, carrying a large handbag with her always so if she was sick she’d be able to do so discreetly, avoiding public transport, not taking birth control as nausea is a side effect, and avoiding large meals before any car trips. There were more safety-seeking behaviours besides these ones mentioned.
I had Jenny complete the Thrive Factor quizzes again to measure her primary limiting beliefs. Her scores were not as high as I would expect given her avoidance behaviours and the symptoms she was still experiencing which meant Jenny had made some “intellectual” shifts only. This means she had changed some of her limiting beliefs on an intellectual level but she didn't have enough evidence in the form of experiences that proved to her that her new belief was solid.
We refreshed the programme theory again from the beginning to ensure Jenny clearly understood all the key concepts - which she did. We went straight into some of the core exercises that get to the heart of change rather than easing into them given Jenny had already started many of them earlier herself.
We discussed what progress Jenny had made with the exercises when doing the programme on her own, so I knew at what level we could kick off again. She was very determined and stepped outside her comfort zone consistently. Jenny set reminders in her phone that went off every couple of hours to remind her what she needed to be doing/thinking that would support her Thrive journey.
What was resolved
All her “avoidance” behaviours were gone completely. Jenny had literally gone through them all and stopped them one-by-one. Jenny started with the ones that were less scary and steadily moved through the entire list (which was substantial).
Not only did Jenny get over her emetophobia, she found her confidence at work had dramatically improved. Jenny proactively had a difficult conversation with her manager that she would have avoided before Thrive.
This is always the case when participants finish The Thrive Programme. Not only have they overcome their fear/phobia, but their self-efficacy generally has substantially increased. Jenny felt more powerful and confident.
Jenny and I had only five sessions together over the internet using a browser-based tool. By the last session she was 95% thriving.
We discussed that she needs to continue to put into practise her new thinking skills even though she “feels” 95% over her emetophobia. Like any new habit, it takes some time to completely embed it and that’s what Jenny needs to do now.
I make contact with all clients 3 months, 6 months, and 12 months post-Thrive to ensure they are still thriving.
Jenny contacted me approximately 4 weeks after our last session and said she had a small blip when going to a restaurant to eat. What this means is that she felt anxious about being in the restaurant and as a result wasn't able to eat what she wanted but instead could only eat a small portion.
We had a brief email exchange to discuss what happened and what she needed to do to overcome this final hurdle. Jenny and I agreed on a plan where she would challenge this final hurdle in small increments. She felt very confident in how she would approach this now and put this small blip behind her which she did.
Blips or wobbles are a normal (and almost essential) part of any learning process.
*Not her real name