The anxiety hierarchy is a perform of cases relating to her target habits to which you react through varying levels of anxiety. The most disturbing item is inserted at the bottom of the list and the least disturbing in ~ the top. In working on the hierarchy, you will begin with the optimal item ~ above the perform (that is, the least disturbing item) and work action by step through the pecking order to the critical item (the one which produces the biggest anxiety affecting your target behavior). Thus, the hierarchy gives a framework for desensitization, with relaxation, the progressively more anxiety-producing situations.

building and construction of one anxiety hierarchy can assist you in 3 ways:


1. It help you verbalize your problem and collection it under in regards to concrete situations which you have, or perhaps will, come up versus in genuine life.


2. You will begin to analyze your problem additional by break it down into situational materials which will make it much easier for girlfriend to see what specific things around the target actions cause friend anxiety; how they are pertained to anxiety-provoking instances other 보다 your target behavior; and also how the trouble may it is in systematically approached.

3. Friend will location the problem in a form that have the right to be treated by this method.

You are watching: The construction of an anxiety hierarchy and training in relaxation are important aspects of

Some world say that merely constructing the tension hierarchy has actually therapeutic value. They have an raised understanding that the problem and also a clearer idea the how and why castle experience stress and anxiety in certain social situations.


creating The pecking order

creating a good hierarchy is really important because it offers the framework for draw close the problem. Time and care have to be committed to it. As was declared above, the pecking order is a list of the instances related to her target actions which you react to through graded amounts of anxiety. Together a hierarchy is built in 3 steps. Now, please gain a pencil and some paper and monitor the instructions closely.


1. Compose down together many cases as you deserve to think the in i m sorry the trouble occurs. If you room nervous v strangers or members of opposing sex, for instance, create down these specific instances in which you suffer difficulty. Create down every you can think of. Her list will encompass some situations which are worse 보다 others. Some will certainly be an extremely frightening, some hardly frightening in ~ all, and some in between.

2. Do a perform of some of the VARIABLES that influence your stress and anxiety level. This can increase your insight into the causes of her anxiety and also make it much easier to develop a an excellent hierarchy.


a ) instances of variables affecting the quantity of stress in presenting a speech to a class: class size; length of speech; quantity of preparation; prestige of speech; how critical instructor is; size of time prior to the speech (week before, night before, walking to classroom, being referred to as upon to give speech, etc.); just how personal the decided is; level to i beg your pardon others will disagree v it; etc.

b ) Other typical variables affecting stress levels; lot of rejection expected; sex of various other person; attractiveness of various other person; difficulty of test; etc.

c ) look at at several of the sample hierarchies and determine variables affect the amount of tension in them. Of food each person is unique, but there are frequently similarities in between hierarchies.


1. Now arrange these items in order from the least upsetting to the most upsetting by thinking about each one and imagining simply how poor it would be to be in that situation.


2. Currently build your last hierarchy. Most human being include about 10-20 items (you may have more) beginning with items therefore mild that they are virtually non-frightening. You can have to invent some an extremely mild items such as having actually someone say words "girl" (for men who space afraid the girls), or looking at the snapshot of a professor (for civilization who room afraid of those through high status), etc. The ten to twenty items must be preferred so regarding contain very tiny jumps in severity indigenous one item come the next, therefore that as soon as you have actually finished an object you don"t have a really much more difficult item simply in former of you. The final items, of course, must be the most severe items from the original list.


This ranked perform of anxiety evoking items constitutes the hierarchy that you will use in her treatment. Modifications additions, combining of items, and also further breaking-down of item on the hierarchy may it is in made at any kind of time during the desensitization therapy. Most people"s hierarchies require some modification as desensitization.

Sample Hierarchies

To help you in building your hierarchy, us have included five sample hierarchies below. Studying these hierarchies will provide you a an excellent idea of just how they space constructed and also should aid you build yours. These are, however, samples just to display you the form. You must construct your own power structure which applies to your particular case.


Hierarchy #1

Target Behavior: stress and anxiety when communicating with members of the contrary sex.

1. Being v a member of the contrary sex that is a member of mine family.

2. Being through a member of the contrary sex i know very well, that is no a member of mine family.

3. See a member of the opposite sex ns know reasonably well.

4. Smiling at a member of the contrary sex ns know fairly well.

5. Talk to a member of opposing sex ns know reasonably well.


6. Seeing a member of the contrary sex I recognize slightly or not at every on campus.

7. Smiling at a member of the opposite sex I understand slightly or no at all.

8. Saying hello to a member of the contrary sex I recognize slightly or not at all.

9. Conference a very attractive member of opposing sex for the first time.

10. Talking on the phone call a quick time v a member of the opposite sex.

11. Talk on the call a short time with a member of the contrary sex.

12. Talking in person for a quick time v a member of opposing sex.

13. Talking for a lengthy time (e.g., one hour ) with a member of opposing sex.

14. Asking out or gift asked out by one attractive member of the contrary sex.

15. Gift on a day with a really attractive member of the contrary sex.

Hierarchy #2

Target Behavior: tension when communicating with my boss.

1. At home the night prior to I go to work, thinking around my boss.

2. Driving come work, thinking about my boss.

3. Walking into the building, thinking about my boss.

4. Beginning the office or the room wherein I work.

5. Greeting and also talking to those I work with around the boss.

6. See the ceo from afar.

7. Pass the boss.

8. Smiling at the boss.

9. Saying hello come the boss and also exchanging greetings.

10. Questioning the ceo a quick question about my job.

11. Questioning the ceo a an ext detailed question.

12. Listening come the boss provide instructions and also then performing them.

13. Talking through the boss on a an ext personal level.

14. Listening to the ceo evaluate mine work.

15. Talk to and taking one order indigenous the boss as soon as he"s very rushed or brusque-acting.

Hierarchy #3

Target Behavior: anxiety when connecting with strangers or those i don"t know very

well.

1. Seeing a stranger from a distance.

2. Walking v a group of strangers.

3. See a stranger walking in the direction of me.

4. Happen a stranger.

5. Looking in ~ a passing stranger that is additionally looking at me.

6. Laugh or nodding come a stranger I"ve frequently passed.

7. Being talked to it is in someone that sits close to me in class.

8. Talk to a class member i don"t really understand abut the course product in a tiny classroom discussion.

9. Gift approached by and talking to who in mine class.

10. Gift approached by and talking top top a an ext personal level with someone I understand slightly.

11. Conference one stranger.

12. Meeting 2 or 3 strangers.

13. Meeting a team of strangers (5-15).

14. Talk briefly v a stranger I simply met.

15. Talking at size with a stranger I simply met.

16. Talking briefly with two or three strangers.

17. Talk at length with 2 or 3 strangers.

18. Talk briefly with a group of strangers.

19. Talking through a group of strangers I simply met.

20. Presenting myself and initiating conversation v strangers.

Hierarchy #4

Target Behavior: anxiety when connecting with a particular person.

1. Smiling at the person.


2. Saying hello to the person.

3. Asking the person exactly how he is.

4. Questioning the human being a short, factual inquiry (e.g., about school).

5. Asking the person a much more detailed concern that takes longer to answer.

6. Informing the person a short experience ns had.

7. Questioning the person"s opinion top top a non-anxiety arousing topic.

8. Informing the human my opinion on a non-anxiety arousing topic.

9. Questioning the human being two or 3 questions and also responding come his answers.

10. Telling the human something about myself, favor my family.

11. Talking back and forth v the human being for a long time around a factual topic.

12. Talking back and forth through the human being on a much more personal level.

13. Approaching the person and also beginning a long conversation.

Hierarchy #5

Target Behavior: are afraid of speak up in class.

1. At home, the night prior to I go to class.

2. Driving come school prior to the class.

3. Walking to my class.

4. Walking inside the classroom.

5. Looking approximately at the human being in the room.

6. Walking in and also saying hello to who in the room.

7. Sitting down in the former row.

8. Recording the professor"s eye and also smiling.

9. Nodding or agreeing with a comment make in class.

10. Questioning the professor a question from the former of the room.

11. Questioning the professor a inquiry from the back of the room.

12. Answering a brief question from the prior of the room.

13. Answering a short question native the back of the room

14. Comment a longer question.

15. Do a talk about a certain point to the class.

NOTE: This hierarchy was design by a college student for himself. He to be 23 and also had never had a date. In ~ a couple of months, he had actually completed his pecking order in actual LIFE.

A power structure Of connecting With the opposite Sex

1. Being with a member of the contrary sex that is a member the the family.

2. Being through a member of the contrary sex that is not a member that the family

3. See a much less attractive member of the contrary sex the I understand not for this reason well.

4. Smiling at a much less attractive member of the contrary sex that I know not so well.

5. Speak "hi" or "hello" to a much less attractive member of the contrary sex.

6. Talking to a less attractive member of the contrary sex for a quick time.

7. Conversing v a much less attractive member of the opposite sex for a lengthy time.

8. Capitalize on complimentary information as soon as conversing through a less attractive member of the contrary sex.

9. Making use of open-ended concerns in a conversation through a member of the opposite sex, that is much less attractive.

10. Seeing a moderately attractive member of opposing sex I understand well.

11. Smiling at a center attractive member of opposing sex i don"t recognize well.

12. Saying "hi" or "hello" to a moderately attractive member of the contrary sex.

13. Talking to a moderately attractive member of the opposite sex because that a brief time.

14. Listening come a center attractive member of opposing sex because that a brief time.

15. Conversing with a center attractive member of the contrary sex because that a long period.

16. Capitalizing on free information once conversing v a middle attractive member of the opposite sex.

17. Utilizing open-ended questions as soon as conversing with a middle attractive member of the contrary sex.

18. Conference a very attractive member of opposing sex for the very first time.

19. Seeing a really attractive member of opposing sex that I recognize not for this reason well.

20. Smiling at a an extremely attractive member of the opposite sex that I know not so well.


21. Speak "hi" or "hello"to a an extremely attractive member of opposing sex the I recognize not so well.

22. Talking to a really attractive member of the opposite sex that I understand not so well.

23. Listening to a very attractive member of the opposite sex that I know that for this reason well.

24. Conversing v a an extremely attractive member of opposing sex for a brief time that ns know relatively well.

25. Conversing with a an extremely attractive member of the opposite sex for a long period that i know reasonably well.

26. Smiling at every other.

27. Eye-to-eye contact.

28. Asking for initiating tasks together.

a. Asking, "Could ns walk you out to her car."

b. In asking for a phone number, give yours first.

c. Questioning him or she for a date.

d. Asking him or her for a dinner date.

1. Putting your an individual feelings forward.

a. AYou have actually a warm and also sensitive nature around you.

b. Saying, "You are an extremely beautiful."

c. Saying, "Being close with you sure renders me feel nice inside."

d. Saying, "I would like to get to recognize you better."

e. Saying, "I am start to choose you a lot."

f) Saying, "I would favor to end up being a friend v you."

1. Coming to grips v your feelings around him or her for the moment.

2. Opened up and also saying what girlfriend feel around him or her.

3. Express compliments and also feelings about the various other person.

a) Saying, "I choose the way you wear your long beautiful hair."

b) Saying, "You have lovely eyes."

1. Expressing physical sex-related approaches

a) Snuggling up close to him or her

b) placing your arm around his or she shoulder

c) emotional his or she hands and also receiving optimistic vibes.

d) Eye-to-eye contact.

e) poignant his or her hair.

f) holding his or her confront within her hands.

1. A Kiss

a) ~ above the hand.

b) on the face.

c) top top the forehead.

d) top top the lips.

1. A hug and an embrace.

2. A caress and a complete body caress.

3. Gift close to one another so regarding share and enjoy each other.

4. Non-demand pleasuring of your partner.

_ (When friend have constructed your hierarchy, write out every item ~ above a different index card and also number the cards in the ideal order. This will give you a practically reference throughout the desensitization sessions. Please write your items on one side of the card only, as the other side will certainly be used for document keeping.)

_ at this point, likewise make 4 positive, really relaxing scenes. (One can be a hopeful outcome scene pertained to your pecking order situation).


Step 2. Deep Muscle be safe

together Discussed above in the introductory section of the manual, human being are desensitized to the anxiety-evoking item on their pecking order by stopping the anxiety with relaxation. In order to do this, girlfriend must very first learn come relax completely, and also learn how to achieve this relaxation at will.


The technique which behavior therapists usage to relax patients is well-known as deep muscle relaxation. This technique will assist you to attain a really deep and thorough state that relaxation, enabling you to progression through the desensitization of her hierarchy.

prior to beginning your desensitization sessions, you need to spend at the very least two half-hour sessions or two days, a half hour per day (beginning tomorrow) practicing the relaxation technique. In order to get the full benefit of deep muscle relaxation, you should observe the following guidelines in be sure training:


1. Invest at least one twenty-minute session, every other day, relaxing and also imaging the actions in your hierarchy.

2. Read and imagine acting out the procedures in a setting in which friend can lug through the full twenty-minute session uninterrupted.

3. That is that the utmost prestige that the relaxation training sessions (as well together the desensitization sessions) be lugged through without interruption.

4. It is likewise important the you concentrate completely on every of the be sure procedures and carry the end the exercises together instructed.

5. Both the relaxation training sessions and also the desensitization sessions should be brought out in a quiet, semi-darkened room. Sit in a comfortable chair or lie down on a comfortable bed or couch. It is essential that you it is in comfortable and able to concentrate throughout a training conference or a desensitization session.

6. In enhancement to practicing the be sure exercises during an actual relaxation maintain session, it is useful to practice the practice at various other times as well. An excellent time to exercise is throughout the minutes in bed prior to falling asleep. Many world find the such practice not only rises the rapidity and also effectiveness of achieve relaxation during a conference but likewise helps them to fall asleep earlier and to snatch periods of relaxation during the day.


as soon as you are able come relax yourself fully in 3 or 4 minutes by briefly running v the be safe exercises, then you are all set to begin your desensitization sessions.

Many world need only 2 practice sessions. If you uncover you need more, stay with them until you feel the you have accomplished the ability to relax.

Use the relaxation procedure ~ above the "Self Desensitization" recording (Side 2 and about 3 minutes into the recording ). Practice them because that twenty minute for 2 days or till you have the right to relax totally at will.

Step 3.The Desensitization Sessions

Having created an anxiety pecking order of from ten come twenty items, and also having practiced deep muscle be sure so the you feel you have achieved the volume to relax at will, you room ready to start desensitizing yourself to the hierarchy.

Briefly, an item is desensitized by imagining it in vivid and realistic information while do the efforts to preserve a state of complete relaxation. The article is consistently imagined until you are able to imagine it v feelings of finish relaxation and also comfort, i.e., there is no experiencing any kind of anxiety or tension. When you room able come imagine a given item with finish relaxation, friend then relocate on to the next item and also repeat the process: Imagine each item in vivid and realistic information while continuing to be relaxed. In this way, you proceed through the pecking order from much less to increasingly more anxiety-provoking items and also desensitizing the pecking order item through item.

Imagining an item


every item on her hierarchy describes a situation. Because that the desensitization to be reliable it is extremely necessary that as soon as you imagine the case described by one item, the picture in her mind be as realistic as possible, and as if you were actually experiencing the situation. Fantastic way to make your photo realistic is come imagine the situation very vividly and in complete and minute detail. You have to imagine every the accessory details that the situation and all the sights, sounds, and also smells that you would certainly be aware of to be you actually enduring the situation. For example, if an object involved your making a day with a member of the contrary sex, you must have an image of the various other person and his or her facial expressions and also your gestures, etc. Friend should notification all the elements of the various other person and also his or she face, smiles, eye contact, etc. Make the other human seem real and also alive. Hear her voices and also the native you to speak and notice your emotions and thoughts, etc. You should imagine all these emotion vividly and make them an integral component of your picture of the situation. Or, if things involves her speaking through a high condition professor, girlfriend should have a very details and complete photo of yourself and that person and also the apparel he is wearing and the way he is standing and his facial expressions and the indigenous that room said between you, and also your own reactions and also feelings about the conversation. With only a little practice in imagining all the details of a situation, you will certainly soon have the ability to make your images really realistic.

The completion of an object

It is vital for friend to understand when you have completed an object and are prepared to relocate on to the next item on the hierarchy. During your maintain sessions and also practice the deep muscle relaxation, girlfriend will learn what that feels choose to be completely relaxed and at ease. Things is completed when you deserve to experience the emotion of complete relaxation while vividly imagining the item as you do as soon as you exercise deep muscle relaxation there is no the item in mind. One pitfall in this development is leaving things before the is really finished. In stimulate for an object to be completed, the level of relaxation friend can obtain while imagining it should be total. That means that also if you feel the slightest little of stress or nervousness, you are not completely desensitized to the item. Continue to be with the item till you feel absolutely no nervousness, until you feel just as calm as the be safe exercises.

In desensitizing you yourself to one item, you very first relax completely using what you have actually learned in the training session. As soon as you are totally relaxed, you then imagine the article vividly. You will certainly soon find out to perceive once tensions and also anxiety enter into the imagined scene and also interfere with your relaxation. If friend feel stress and anxiety while imagining the scene, instantly stop imagining the item and imagine a relaxing scene or just focus on relaxing again. You might then shot the scene again or add new items to your hierarchy to fill in any type of gaps.

Step By action Conduct of a Desensitization session

The variety of sessions essential varies in accordance with countless factors. For relatively simple problems, experience has presented that ten come twenty sessions is often sufficient. Periodically fewer space necessary and also sometimes numerous more. However, that is not wise to collection a border or expectation on the variety of sessions friend will must desensitize her hierarchy; simply proceed step-by-step through the hierarchy and moving on to a new item once you have completed the vault one.

In the beginning, once you space working ~ above the low-anxiety provoking items, you may have the ability to complete numerous items in a single session. Later, together you reach items i m sorry provoke much more anxiety it might take more time to desensitize you yourself to an item and possibly several sessions to finish a single item.

that is terrific idea to set yourself a regular schedule for the sessions. You will be desensitizing every various other day. Due to the fact that the sessions are only twenty minute apiece, this must not be a great burden.

The setting is basically the same for the sessions as that of the relaxation maintain sessions: work in a quiet, semi-darkened, personal room whereby you will not it is in interrupted; sit comfortable on a chair or lied on a bed or couch; work without interruption because that the term of the twenty minutes.

Desensitization Session actions

Each conference is carried out in the same basic way, follow tot he complying with outline:


2. Have two piles that cards put conveniently so the you perform not have to reach for them. It is ideal to have actually the cards automatically before you, on her lap. Memorize the very first 3-4 items of each stack of cards.

3. Make certain your cassette recorder is within straightforward reach and also locate the beginning the the be sure instructions on next 2 of the Self-Desensitization Instructions. Be safe yourself completely using what you have learned indigenous the be sure training.

4 . Once you feeling relaxed, start your desensitization session. Usage the following procedure to overview you:


a) each time you imagine an object on her hierarchy, we will contact this a "trial." every trial large 25 seconds, during which you keep the image as vividly prior to you as feasible while trying come remain fully relaxed. In ~ the finish of each trial, take it a 15 2nd rest, throughout which you need to think about your human body getting an ext and much more relaxed. (Imagine a positive scene from between each hierarchy scene).

b) The conference is split into block of 3 trials. You must stay through a given item until you have the right to imagine it three consecutive times (a block of three trials) through absolutely no stress or tension of any kind of kind. If you effectively complete things at the beginning of her desensitization session, walk on and work ~ above another, but don"t desensitize you yourself to much more than 2 items per session. Psychic to continue to be with each details item till you have acquired through a finish block of three trials without any type of anxiety.

c) If you have actually tried a offered item because that nine trials (or 3 blocks) and also are still feeling anxiety as soon as you visualize it, then go back to the ahead item and also complete one anxiety-free block of three trials on that one. Then try the difficult item again. If, after ~ going through this three times, the daunting item quiet doesn"t yield, this way that the run is too good between it and the ahead item. You should then modify your hierarchy by inserting one or 2 items in between these two. These new items should be much less anxiety-provoking than the one which gave you trouble but slightly more anxiety-provoking than the critical one girlfriend completed. One good way to develop such intermediate items is to think about the instance of the difficult item and also then think up ways to do that situation slightly less fearful. If the challenging item appeared an extremely early in the hierarchy, this means that friend are starting off v items that space too difficult, and also that girlfriend should begin the power structure with a pair of very easy items and also then work up an extremely slowly.

d) girlfriend should begin each session v the critical item friend completed in the previous session. Thus, if girlfriend were functioning on item #6, for instance, and had no completed it when the conference ended, you need to start the next session v item #5 and stay with it till you have again imagine it 3 consecutive times without anxiety. Then walk on to #6.

e) as soon as you have actually completed the hierarchy, that is, once you room desensitized come the most challenging item, go earlier through the entire hierarchy once an ext just to make certain that you space in fact thoroughly desensitized t each item. ~ above this run-through friend should be able to imagine every item on the list 3 consecutive times without the slightest stress or nervousness. If any kind of item quiet evokes the slightest little of anxiety, continue to be with it until it is fully anxiety-free. You may reach the end of her hierarchy before the finish of the 4 weeks or you might not and just work at your very own pace.


The completion of things on your pecking order in desensitization sessions suggested that you space making development toward the alleviation of your problem. The actual test that you are addressing the problem, however, is that your capacity to imagine a instance without anxiety is complied with by an capacity to endure the real-life situation without anxiety. For part people, such transport is practically immediate: some human being take much longer to accomplish the capability to experience the analogous real-life case without anxiety. The lag may range from a few days to numerous days or weeks, depending on the person and the particular item.

have to you have advanced a an excellent way into your pecking order without noticing any far-ranging transfer to analogous real-life situations, that is, instances related to her target behavior, the is likely that you room not desensitizing the items completely. This can frequently be remedied by security a complete session top top relaxation between each team of 5 come 8 desensitizing sessions. Then be sure you are totally anxiety-free prior to leaving one item and also proceeding to the next.

After you have actually completed a few items effectively in your hierarchy, begin to monitor this essential rule.


1 . Proactively SEEK OUT those situations which friend are about ready for in your hierarchy.

2 . AVOID situations very high on your pecking order which you are not all set for.

3. If you finish up in a situation that has actually a an unfavorable outcome, you may experience a "set-back." In the case, just back up a methods in her hierarchy and repeat procedures and/or add new steps. PERSISTANCE is THE MOST necessary DETERMINANT OF ultimate SUCCESS ! ! !

4. SEEK encouragement and assistance native those who have the right to adequately administer it to you. Having household or friends, or a counselor routing because that you deserve to be very helpful.

1. Make sure your problem is not absence of SKILLS to it is in successful. If the is, get aid with enhancing skills.

2. If you need a little more incentive to gain you going, make CONTRACTS (written preferred). Example: AI will have actually a (celebration, pilgrimage on Saturday, etc.) if I provide the speech. I will eat dinner just after I asking Sara because that a date, etc.

3 . Role Playing. The other method you will be using in this job is role playing, and the remainder of this manual faces that technique and that of document keeping. Because you have actually read a an extensive amount, you could want to take a break and also continue reading in around ten minutes. Don"t gain too tired. Yet be sure to read and understand this whole manual! NOTE: Most the the role playing techniques deserve to be done in her imagination. This is likewise an effective way to execute it if friend cannot find a team partner.


You will be working on desensitizing you yourself to the procedures on your pecking order every other day. In order come maximize her success, girlfriend may combine the desensitization procedure explained above with one more procedure, duty playing. Therefore, you will certainly be alternate desensitization and role playing, act desensitization every various other day and role playing every other day.

~ you have spent two days learning exactly how to relax you yourself (start ~ above Friday so these days would be Friday and also Saturday). Spend someday working ~ above the first one or two items of your hierarchy. Then, ~ above the 4th day, function play the item with an additional person because that 1.-15 minutes. The next day, that course, you would certainly be ago to desensitization and also work on completing the item on your hierarchy which are the very first and second step through positively no stress in desensitization. Come repeat, then, top top Friday and also Saturday you"ll be practicing relaxation, role play, on Tuesday you"ll desensitize, etc. You will be alternating these two actions throughout the experiment and role playing the item(s) you operated on in desensitization the work before.

Role-Playing

role playing is one successful method that can help you in unlearning the stress and anxiety you"ve learned to endure with your target behavior and also can assist you feel more calm and comfortable in her target situation. Briefly, duty playing is merely acting the end a actions that renders you feeling anxious with someone you feel calm and comfortable with. Using function playing, then, you will certainly act out each step on your hierarchy. Role playing each action will aid you to become less anxious around those situations related to her target behavior. You will be using the hierarchy you have constructed and will progressively work your method from step to step by exhilaration each one out till you feel calm and comfortable in the function playing situation. You will go v this acting out procedure with someone who you feel really comfortable with, who who have the right to pretend is a person involved in your target situation however who go not make you anxious.

Role Playing partner


It is an extremely important that your function playing companion be someone your are fully comfortable with. This way you can continue to combine a comfortable, peaceful feeling v each step in her hierarchy. His or she characteristics, such as sex and age, have the right to be largely identified by your own preferences. Be certain the person is interested in help you and willing to occupational with you about 15 minute every various other day for 4 weeks. Tension the prestige of perfect the project to her partner and that the project is crucial to you and also to your psychology grade. Be sure that your companion will continue to be with you with the experiment. It would be very disappointing come you and the experimenters if you to be proceeding well with your change plans and also then had to forfeit beneficial time in feather for an additional partner.

Often family members members or near friends space ideal role playing partners. They are currently concerned v your welfare, easily available, and usually the most relaxing civilization for you to be with.

girlfriend can present the experiment as a task for your psychology course and also tell the partner how he too can benefit from the experience. He will learn a technique for editing some the his own anxieties, assist you gain a an excellent course grade, and also be pleased in ~ your progress with your target behavior.

most of all, make sure the person you choose is someone who takes your task seriously and really desires you to improve. Come repeat, then, as soon as picking your function playing partner, make certain that he or she has these characteristics:


1. (S)He need to be a person with whom you are fully comfortable.

2. (S)He must be serious interested in helping you succeed v your change plan.

3. (S)She need to be obtainable every various other day because that 15 minutes over a 4 week period.


a) (S)He can learn a successful technique for editing all kinds of anxiety.

b) (S)He can aid you improve vital aspect of her social interaction.

c) S)He can assist you get a good grade in psychology.

d) the will just require about 15 minutes of his time every various other day.


shot to pick up your duty playing companion by Monday, march 15, so you can begin to role play the very first one or two measures on your hierarchy that day and also after successfully desensitizing the item(s) the day before. Come repeat, you will certainly be pretending the your duty playing partner is someone associated with her target behavior. Therefore, since you are function playing, the sex or age of your partner does not matter. Because that example, if you room a male who is editing and enhancing his anxiety roughly women, you wouldn"t have to pick one to it is in your role playing partner. You might pick your mommy or your father, your next door neighbor and also any one human being who cares about your progress and also who girlfriend feel an extremely much at lull with. If you are modifying anxiety around groups or an ext than one stranger, your role playing partner would play the duty of the group of strangers. Role playing is a an approach which simulated a actual life situation, therefore, your function playing partner have the right to be of great help come you in this project.

ROLE play SESSIONS

As declared above, you have to pick your role playing partner and begin to role play the an initial step top top your pecking order on Monday. Top top Monday, get in addition to your partner and also find a quiet, private ar where you can function play for about 15 minutes without gift interrupted. Begin with the first item on your hierarchy. Prior to the session begins, very closely explain to your companion the qualities of the human (or people) he"ll be acting out. Make sure you both recognize the parts you"ll be playing. If, for example, girlfriend are function playing action one in a power structure that faces anxiety around interacting v members of the contrary sex, and also your very first step simply is to look in ~ a member of the contrary sex, girlfriend will simply pretend the your role playing partner is a member of opposing sex. If her target habits is talking to your boss and your an initial step is saying hello come the boss when he looked prefer he"s in a grumpy mood, your function playing partner would pat the boss by feather gruff and also acting choose he"s in a negative mood. You will have told him exactly how to act prior to you start the session, the course, so friend won"t need to stop in the center of function playing and also explain other to her partner, in order to breaking the effect.


the course, you room to feel an extremely comfortable, confident, and also at ease once you are function playing. If you function play an object and feel at ease, function play the two an ext times so you"ll be roll playing the item 3 consecutive times without feeling any kind of anxiety at all. If, however, you feeling anxiety once you function play a certain item, function play the three more times. If you still feel stress on the fourth function playing trial, go back to the previous item on your power structure and function play it 3 times without feeling uncomfortable or anxious. Go on come the challenging item and also try duty playing that again. If you still don"t feel at ease role playing the challenging item, you probably need come insert one or much more steps in her hierarchy between the two items. If this happens, insert the new step(s) and begin role playing that (them). Be sure to always function play things three times without feeling any type of anxiety prior to you walk on to the next item. Try to attain the peaceful state you usage in her desensitization sessions.

The size of time that takes because that you to duty play different items will certainly be different for assorted items. Part items (like, because that example, the very first ones on her hierarchy) will certainly take just a few seconds or minute to function play. An example of this would certainly be a guy who is modifying his anxiety roughly women and who was duty playing a step on his hierarchy that said "smiling in ~ a woman". That step would only take a couple of seconds to function play. If he role played the action three time without feeling anxiety during a session, he can go ~ above in his pecking order and duty play one an ext item.

If you complete things and have actually 5 or 10 much more minutes left in your role playing session, walk on come the next item, however do not duty play an ext than two items per day (same as for desensitization). But shot to complete at the very least one item per session. As you come to the critical items on your hierarchy, girlfriend may uncover that your items take longer to role play 보다 the beginning ones on her hierarchy. For example, you could be function playing things that states Ahave a 10 minute conversation through my boss. In that case, friend may have to spend a couple of half hour duty playing sessions on every step near the finish of the study. If this happens and you cannot complete the item in one day, continue function playing it the next session. (As we claimed before, You"ll be role playing every other day.)

in between each trial, or each time you function play the item, take it a 15 2nd break throughout which you and also your companion relax. Throughout this time, you can return come your normal relationship, however be ready to resume your roles. When you finish the role playing of things (three time without feeling any anxiety in the function playing situation) and you"re ready to walk on to the following item, take a break and tell your companion the role he will be play next.

Be certain that you and your function playing companion take the function playing sessions seriously. Concentration on the roles you space playing. Imagine the case vividly, as you do in desensitization.

The role playing an approach should aid you relax when you room in the actual life situation; it will assist make you aware of the various materials of the case you will encounter in genuine life. The will assist you improve your smoothness and your skills. It will also help you change old habits with new ones by repetition.

ONCE YOU discover THE procedure OF SELF-DESENSITIZATION YU have the right to USE IT to OVERCOME almost ANY UNREALISTIC ANXIETY! conserve THESE instructions FOR use IN THE FUTURE. REPEAT THEM together NEEDED.


Appendix A: Phobias Lists

TRY THE adhering to WEBSITETO view A long LIST the PHOBIA NAMES:

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The book (free download): go to materials of Dr. Stevens" book, You Can choose To be Happy: "Rise Above" Anxiety, Anger, and Depression.

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