Do Genetics Affect Your Fear Factor?


Do Genetics Affect Your Fear Factor?

Are genetics a factor as to whether you are fearless or fearful or somewhere in between? 

There are many traits you have inherited from your parents. 

From your mother you may have inherited colour blindness, male pattern baldness, your academic successes, and even your love of coffee…or not. 

Your heart health, the colour of your eyes and the health of your teeth are the responsibility of your father’s genes. 

But it isn’t just about the physical features that your parents have bestowed upon you.

Like it or not, the person you are today, the beliefs you possess and the actions you take, have a lot to do with your parents and the environment you grew up in as a child.

You have most likely also inherited your parents’ mannerisms, their mental wellness, their ability to communicate; well or not; their worry habits, the way they handle stress, their beliefs about money, their strengths and their fears as well as the obvious such as their use of language and their accents and so much more. And of course, you as a parent, pass the same on to your children. 

If you don’t recognise this in yourself, I’m sure you identify it in others.

‘According to William R. Clark, Professor Emeritus in the Department of Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology at U.C.L.A. in Scientific American, fear is an emotion, an unspoken memory, stored in special parts of the brain. It provokes individuals to react rapidly, almost instinctively, in the face of perceived danger. Fear can be present in greater or lesser degrees in different individuals. 

The study of fear in animals such as mice has shown that fear can be selectively bred into succeeding generations, suggesting a strong genetic component. It showed that if fearful mice are bred with one another repeatedly over a dozen or so generations, it is possible to develop lines of mice in which all members are highly anxious and fearful in a variety of different tests.

But they do not learn this from one another or from their mothers. A newborn mouse from a fearful line, reared by a fearless mother together with fearless siblings, will still be fearful as an adult.’

Fortunately, fear isn’t a life sentence.

When you decide to approach the things, you are fearful of differently; seek advice and support to shift that fear.

There is no reason you can’t overcome that which scares you most. When you do, you will gain a whole new level of confidence you may not have expected. 

Remember, fear is a feeling, not a fact. 

People who live fearlessly live positively by contributing to others. Thus lessoning their own fears and by putting their problems into perspective. 

People who live fearlessly tend to have five defining characteristics:

  1. They let go of hurt and forgive those who have wronged them. 
  2. They accept themselves and accept the fact they have faults and weaknesses as well. 
  3. These people celebrate other’s achievements and don’t feel threatened by other’s gains.
  4. They honour their word by meaning what they say and doing what they say they will. 
  5. And they are committed to everything they do. By adopting these five characteristics, you will reduce your anxieties and raise your level of self-confidence.

You can either spend your life struggling to protect yourself from your fears that you have learned or inherited through genetics – which is what most people do unconsciously – or you can take action to step out of the anxieties that confine you.

Don’t allow your genetics and upbringing to influence the way your respond to, and what your fear

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