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I'm sure you're going to laugh at me - phone phobia - and important calls I really HAVE to make today..........

(36 Posts)
FAQ Wed 17-Sep-08 09:39:30

I'm ok making calls to people I know (most of the time - if it's someone I don't know very well, or don't get on with I'll try to avoid at all costs). Phone calls to get quotes/arrangement appointments/find out information I'm terrified of doing and rarely do.

However today I have to make some calls.

I need call some solicitors to try and arrange an appointment to see someone.

I need to call CAB (if they're open - website says they're not open today anyhow) to make an appointment to see someone there.

Also need to call the council housing department as well.

All of these are vitally important as I could find myself homeless within a few months (exH can't afford to keep paying the mortgage on this place - and I can't either)

However I'm sat here with the numbers in front of me and I'm too terrified to pick up the phone and ring - it's really stupid I know - the fear of finding myself without a home with 3 young DS's is even more terrifying - but that thought isn't helping me get on with these calls..........

Lazycow Wed 17-Sep-08 09:48:08

Can you email the CAB office to ask for an appointment?

For the council housing department - Write down the things you want to say.

Thent take a deep breath and DON'T THINK ABOUT IT ANY MORE - just dial the number.

After you have made the list of questions you want to ask/discuss, just make your mind go blank and dial the number.

Once someone at the other end answers you will be forced to talk (refer to your list if you forget/get flustered) and get on with sorting whatever it is out.

You just need to actuially dial the number which isn't too difficult when you think about it.

FAQ Wed 17-Sep-08 09:52:30

oh god it all sounds simple (and should be - it's only a phone call) but I just turn into a wreck at the meer thought of it..

I'm aiming to try and make the calls this morning while DS1 and 2 are at school - but I'll probably end up taking a walk to town and speaking to them in person (I find this hard too, but a hell of a lot easier than calling) hmm

God what do I sound like, I'm a mother of 3 and I can't do a simple thing like this

quickdrawmcgraw Wed 17-Sep-08 09:53:13

All that LC said.
I also hate making these type of phonecalls and things can often turn out worse because I've delayed making the call. I'm ok once I'm on the call it's just starting it.

Usually I make a list of things i need to ask then make a cup of coffee and then without thinking about the call I dial the number. The coffee makes me feel like I'm a casual-not afraid-of-making-calls type of person.

Seeline Wed 17-Sep-08 09:55:15

FaQ - I know how you feel, I hate making ophone calls like that. I'd much rather speak to people in person. Bizarrely I seem to be OK if people ring me though. I sometimes ring at lunchtimes in the hope that I'll be able to lave a message to get someone to ring back blush Good luck

thebecster Wed 17-Sep-08 09:56:02

The trick is to trick your fear response into not activating until you're already doing it. So say 'I'm not going to call them right now, I'm just going to write down everything I need to say to them', and then 'I'm not calling them, I'm just writing down the number' and then 'I'm not calling them, I'm just picking up the phone' 'I'm not calling them, I'm just dialling the number' and miraculously there they'll be on the phone and your fear will dissipate as soon as you're actually doing it, as long as you can trick your subconscious into thinking you're not 'about to do it', because that's when the fear tends to spike. Works for me. Yes, I am barking mad. Have to do a lot of awkward phone calls in my job!

CaptainKarvol Wed 17-Sep-08 09:58:19

I do not laugh at this - I feel just the same about phones (and about going into shops / restaurants I don't know).

The thing that helps me most is to write down my 'script'. All of it. From 'hello, this is me, can I speak to x?', to I really need... and 'thank you for your time, x, may I call you back on this number if I need to speak to you again about this?'

I quite often won't need it, but I have to have it there.

Best of luck!

Carmenere Wed 17-Sep-08 09:59:00

FAQ I actually suffer from this fear a bit too although I have pretty much gotten over it. All I can say is to focus on the relief you will feel when you do it. And you just have to in this case. You will be fine and once you take control of the situation you will feel much better.

BecauseImWorthIt Wed 17-Sep-08 09:59:04

Work out what your opening sentence is going to be. Have a list (if necessary) of the things you need to ask/achieve in front of you.

Then stand up, smile, drop your shoulders (you'll probably find that they're so tense that they're up by your ears!), take a deep breath and then dial.

It's the getting started that's the problem.

(BTW the standing up and smiling thing was something I was taught when I had to go on a telephone sales course. It does really help you to feel more confident and in control, and it also comes over on the eother end of the phone - try it - you'll be really surprised!)

Good luck. I hate the phone, but have to do it for my job. Which is why I'm sitting on my backside on the sofa on MN!

ShowOfHands Wed 17-Sep-08 10:02:09

I have the same fear FAQ. I'm terrible about phones, get shaky and worried when I know I have to ring somebody. I do the same as people on here, just blank my mind, pick up the phone and dial. I tell myself if I can pick up the phone and do it NOW, I don't have to worry about it all day/night.

I sympathise.

Mimsy2000 Wed 17-Sep-08 10:07:38

i'm the same FAQ - good luck and agree wiht other poster, just focus on the relief you will feel when you get the awful task over.

Saturn74 Wed 17-Sep-08 10:10:00

make notes of important points before you call.
once you make the first call, you'll be on a roll, and the others will be less scary.

minorbird Wed 17-Sep-08 10:12:41

I suffer a bit from this too! Infact, I was putting off calling DD playschool just now, as she hasnt gone in. But reading this thread gave me the umph to do it! grin

I dont know where this stems from. Usually the phonecalls go fine, its just doing it isn't it! I'm a bit the same with calls from friends, I rarely answer straight away. (It drives them mad) I have to be in the right headspace for calls. Couldnt work in a call centre! LOL.

Best of Luck FAQ, theres some great advice here and I've just done it! smile

Celery Wed 17-Sep-08 10:13:14

I hate phones too. won't even phone the chinese takeaway.

scattercushion Wed 17-Sep-08 10:17:49

Yup feel the same! What about you pick one of the numbers and call it before 10.30? Then we can all congratulate you!

scattercushion Wed 17-Sep-08 10:59:51

or 11.30? wink

geogteach Wed 17-Sep-08 11:14:07

so glad its not just me, I need to phone some builders to come round and quote for a job. I am petrified - rate i'm going it would be quicker to train to be a builder myself.

FluffyMummy123 Wed 17-Sep-08 11:15:39

Message withdrawn

DaisySteiner Wed 17-Sep-08 11:22:09

I worked in various call centres during university vacations, even making those horrible marketing calls where people tell you to fuck off constantly, and I STILL hated making personal calls to people I didn't know. I'm a bit better now, but I'm currently procrastinating because I need to phone a bunch of people!

PinkTulips Wed 17-Sep-08 11:38:24

i have no advice but as a fellow sufferer you have my utmost sympathy.

i practically have a nervous breakdown if there's call i absolutely have to make, i've been known to cry blush dp does any he can for me but some have to be done by me or have to be done when he's out of the house and i really find it impossible. things often get left for months as i'm afraid to do them.

the weird thing s once i'm on the phone i'm ok and can speak fine, it's the initial making of the call that has me quivering in fear.

Brangelina Wed 17-Sep-08 11:42:43

Oh good, I'm glad it's not just mesmile.

The sad thing is I work remotely so need to use the phone a lot. Like PT I'm fine once I'm on but get worked up beforehand trying to plan what to say. The trick is, I found, to take a deep breath, pick up the phone and dial quickly and not think about anything at all.

ninja Wed 17-Sep-08 11:44:09

I'm the same. Convince yourself it'll be an answer phone message and just go for it.

Hope you've managed to make one. Once you do one the others will seem SO much better

FAQ Wed 17-Sep-08 11:53:03

woohoo - I don't need to make the calls - a solution has been found to stay where I am grin (x2)

Kathyis6incheshigh Wed 17-Sep-08 12:10:50

Gosh this thread is a revelation - I thought it was just me grin

My personal solutions are having the calls written on a big guilt-inducing to-do list preferably emphasising the good/bad consequences of the call - eg 'phone to arrange study visit so that will be all sorted', 'phone student before she complains to my head of department' etc.

Actually it also helps doing it sitting in front of the computer with only half your brain on the phone as you dial, rather than going somewhere else and getting all hyped up.

And as Lazycow says, having notes in front of you.

HereComeTheGirls Wed 17-Sep-08 12:19:14

I have this in my personal life..but work as a receptionist making all sorts of difficult calls without a problem...strange, isn't it! [GRIN]

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