By | Madison
Have you ever tried to avoid receiving a phone call? Sometimes, especially if you work in a business environment, there’s no way around it. If you loathe making phone calls, you’re not alone. Many people dread making or receiving phone calls, but if you experience extreme fear when doing so, you may suffer from telephobia.
Telephobia is a dread of making or receiving phone calls that affects up to 76% of millennials and 40% of baby boomers. This disorder is also known as phone phobia, telephonophobia, phone phobia, and, most commonly, phone anxiety.
If you suffer from telephobia or are a business owner looking for ways to help your employees improve their phone skills, keep reading to find out how to overcome phone anxiety.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
CBT is a type of psychological treatment that has been shown to be useful for a variety of issues, including anxiety disorders such as telephobia. Identifying and analyzing unhelpful or unreasonable beliefs, as well as performing systematic desensitization, are common components of CBT treatment.
Those who suffer from severe phone anxiety can work with a therapist to figure out where their anxieties come from and how to adjust their thought patterns to be more realistic and productive.
Additionally, systematic desensitization allows for exposure to anxiety-provoking scenarios such as hearing the phone ring or maintaining a phone conversation while under the supervision of a qualified psychologist. This graded exposure is thought to desensitize an individual to a stimulus, eventually causing them to stop being afraid of it.
Prepare Talking Points
Preparation, like practice, leads to perfection. When you’re nervous about a phone call, you’re more likely to get muddled and forget important details from your pitch or consultation. Before making a call, it’s critical to plan ahead of time and jot down important notes for later reference.
Taking notes before, during, and after your phone calls can be very helpful to you or potential clients. You can learn about a customer service team that isn’t up to par, a product fault or technical malfunction that has to be addressed, a new company project or opportunity, or even a collaboration with a high return on investment potential.
Use this printable note sheet that will help keep your topics of discussion in order, making the conversations more efficient, focused, and meaningful.
Smile While You Speak
When making a phone call, telephobic people may have a weak voice, shortness of breath, or even stumble over their own words. It’s easy to sound and feel apprehensive when situations like this happen.
Since your tone of voice is essential for making a good impression, try smiling before making and receiving calls. Although it may feel silly, studies have proven that others can truly “hear” your smile. This can assist you convey warmth and the feeling that you’re confident in what you’re saying to the individual you’re chatting with.
In addition, smiling not only makes you sound more confident, but it also makes you feel happier. It’s simpler to relax and focus on the task at hand when you’re happy.
Trick Your Brain
Rather than telling yourself to calm down before a big call, trick your brain into thinking you’re excited. Feeling calm is a low-arousal state of mind while feeling nervous or anxious is associated with high arousal. The feeling of excitement is also associated with high arousal, so it’s easier to tell yourself you are excited rather than calm.
Individuals who reframed their anxiety as exhilaration felt more enthusiastic and performed better in a research conducted by the American Physiological Association than those who sought to calm down. All they had to do was employ simple tactics like stating “I am excited” out loud or writing messages to themselves like “Get excited” before the big event to trick their brains into feeling excited.
Phone anxiety may have a negative impact on both your personal and professional life, so it’s critical to find ways to overcome it. To learn more about telephobia, its effect on business, and ways to overcome it, check out this infographic below.