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Something I need advice about
#1
I need to tell this to somebody, I've been holding it inside of me my whole life. I've always had this huge anxiety about phone calls. I only feel comfortable answering calls from my family members and close friends. Making a call is a bit easier for me than answering one.

So now I need and want my very first job. I applied for many vacancies and potential employers are calling me back now. Of course, that's only logical - how else would they reach me? But I'm afraid to answer the calls.

I even put my phone to a silent mode so that I don't hear anyone calling me. When I checked my phone later, there were like five missed calls, one number had been calling me four times and the other number was from a place that I was actually really looking forward to hear from but I never thought they would contact me. Now they did and because of my stupid and irrational fear I didn't answer their call.

I know - really stupid, I might be missing a lot of good opportunities but I can't help it. I can't even tell what exactly I'm afraid of, but it's just that when my phone rings and there's an unknown number there, there's just something in me that doesn't let me to answer it. After it stops ringing I feel so very worthless because I didn't take something that could've changed my life for no reason. I need a doctor I guess.

My family know about my anxiety and they all tell me that I'll never get hired if I keep doing this. I know they're right. But I don't know how to fight with it and I don't know how to stop it. All I know is that I hate phone calls. In my CV there's also my e-mail, why not contact me that way? That wouldn't solve the problem, of course.
#2
This is more than a simple case of nerves. It's something that could potentially hamper your success in life. Telling you that you have to "get over it" won't help. It will probably increase your anxiety.

You need help handling this, and you need to get it from a professional, a therapist or counselor. And don't worry, this is far from the oddest thing they've ever heard. No one will judge you.

Good luck with this, and with the job hunt as well.
#3
What jobs are you applying for? If it's for a job that doesn't need you to pick up calls then just email them saying you have a phobia of phone calls. If your in the UK you will covered by the reasonable adjustment act and they will have to deal with you through email. You could also get someone else to answer the phone for you?

If your a UK Citizen go to your gp and tell them about it. I did the same regarding job interviews last week and I've been referred to a specialist.
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#4
I used to suffer from this with both phone calls and the front door. I wouldn't answer any withheld numbers and I still google unknown numbers now. I would only answer the door to family/friends and couldn't even go and answer the door if it was a stranger I was expecting (e.g. takeaway delivery - I'd get my housemate to do it).

There are only a couple reasons I can think of. One is I don't handle failure or bad news very well. I'm hitting the highest high when I'm doing well, but I get stressed easily and tend to internalise negative emotions. I think this was due to a couple of bad experiences in my life where I failed things I'd applied for or whatever. I also lived in fear of the phone ringing for two years because I was in debt, not getting paid as much due to a change in circumstances and companies were obviously demanding money. Finally I spent a couple of days in my life scared to leave the house/answer the door because of... well it's a long story but basically I felt scared because someone close to me had issues and was potentially harmful.

Oh and there was the time I worked 60 hour weeks and on my day off I was guaranteed a phone call from work asking me to come in because someone was sick... and if I didn't answer I'd get shouted at the next time I was in for not answering.

Lol so I guess there were reasons.

I'm better now though. As life went on and I sorted things out and grew confident I just dealt with things there and then. If you put things off or try to shield yourself from them you're still going to worry, and worry and worry some more. It's best to just answer, deal with the good or bad news and either celebrate or move on. The more you put it off the more it eats at you. The more you answer them the better you will feel. You have to remember that no-one on the phone can harm you and you have the end call button ready to press whenever you need to.


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