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15 Irrational Fears That Take Up Way to Much of Our Attention

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The collective anxiety that frequently emerges in group settings possesses a distinct intensity, causing individuals to often amplify their worries beyond reason. This phenomenon gained prominence when an online inquiry prompted people to share anecdotes of things far less menacing than commonly perceived.

1. The Bermuda Triangle

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The idea that there’s a big, bad, mysterious hell hole just waiting to swallow anything in its vicinity has been a source of horror stories for years. As it turns out, there really isn’t much mystery about it.

A contributor confesses, “Man, I was stressed about the Bermuda Triangle when I was a kid. It didn’t matter I was living thousands of miles away.”

Someone explains, “The Bermuda Triangle was never more dangerous than any other ocean part. It had as many ships sink as most other areas on average; it was just a very common trade route. More ships going through means more crashes.”

Another adds, “Even with old ships, it wasn’t any more dangerous than other parts of the ocean. The mythos behind it started essentially as a tabloid half a century ago.”

2. Solo Traveling

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People get mini heart attacks when someone, especially a woman, reveals they’re taking a trip alone. A myriad of reasons why that’s a terrible idea are laid out. But are the fears real?

A user shares, “Travelling alone as a woman. So many people looked at me in shock when I told them about my solo trips. Sure, it’s not without risk, but nothing in life is, and I’m not gonna miss seeing the world and living life just because I haven’t got someone to go with me. And so far, I haven’t had a single negative experience. The world isn’t always as evil as some make it out to be.”

3. Alligators

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They may look menacing, but you’re not their first choice for dinner. An online user says, “They are pretty dangerous, but they’re ambush predators mainly. They’re not usually going to come after you if you’re not hanging out by a water source.”

Another added, “They’re also very easy to outrun on land. That whole zig-zag thing is a myth.”

4. Snakes

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Few reptiles elicit fear like snakes.

Someone on an online platform says, “People get so freaked out (by snakes), but come on. It’s a noodle with a face. Almost all snakes are non-venomous, and even the ones that are are NOT coming to hunt you down. No snake is coming to get you. If they attack, it’s only out of defense.”

Another one says, “(I) completely agree. And I’m from Australia. I have kept a few of the native pythons as pets, and they are docile sweethearts. We have many venomous snakes, like king browns (dugites) and tiger snakes, and it’s true they keep out of your way and won’t chase you. They only ever attack in defense.”

If an Australian said it, we believe it.

5. Phones on a plane

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It’s among the first in-flight instructions, but how dangerous is it? Some online users didn’t think it was as serious as we may have thought.

One user says, “To be fair, I wouldn’t trust a plane that could crash because candy crush decided to update.”

Another one adds, “Using a phone anywhere they tell you not to, surely. When the only form of policing is a sign that says “don’t use your phone,” I’m sure the rule has been broken plenty of times.”

Better safe than sorry?

6. Spiders

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Spiders would be pretty proud if they understood the terror they evoked in humans. Are the arachnids that dangerous, though?

A user shares, “Yeah, some of them have a medically significant bite, and you should be aware of what those spiders look like, but the vast majority are not going to bite you without provocation.”

A user who lived in Australia says, “They are pretty fast when they want to be, but I’ve only really seen them go fast AWAY from a person unless they’re just really confused and panicking.”

Seems like humans are really the problem.

7. Sell-by Date

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How long after the sell-by date is food unfit for human consumption?

Someone shares, “Eating off date food. Seriously, people act like they’re going to die by eating it all because it’s six hours past a magical date.”

Another user adds, “Depends on the food. If you left raw chicken on the counter for 6 hours and then cooked it, you might be in trouble.”

A more daring user adds, “I have my limits but I take pride in eating “expired” food.”

8. Firearms

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Being afraid of firearms in the hands of the wrong people is justified, but many people are terrified of seeing, touching, or being anywhere near a firearm. Is it necessary?

An online commenter says, “So long as you know what the f*** you’re doing.” Give it respect and all is good.

9. A Career as a Cop

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A job that involves meeting bad people regularly is a cause of anxiety for many, especially parents. An online commenter thinks it shouldn’t.

He says, “They (police officers) might have a scary job, but it’s less dangerous than working at a convenience store.”

Someone adds, “Being a cop in the US. Doesn’t even crack the top 20 jobs, not even close.”

10. Nuclear Power

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Despite what the movies have portrayed, many online users seem to think nuclear power isn’t that bad. Unless, of course, it fails.

“One user explains, “The average nuclear power plant emits far less radiation than a coal plant because coal and uranium deposits tend to be near one another, and the uranium goes up the smokestack and into the air.”

“The problem is that if/when one fails, it tends to be spectacularly bad, just like with planes.” Another one adds.

Well, we really don’t want to find out, do we?

11. Swimming After Eating

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A general motherhood rule passed down for generations is that a kid can’t jump into the pool immediately after eating, or they’ll drown. Will they, though?

One user says, “I believed I would drown in seconds if I didn’t wait a full hour before getting back in the water.”

Didn’t we all?

“I think I read something about it being from a very popular cookbook from around the turn of the 1900s.” Someone adds. A few people have a theory that parents made up this rule so they can take a nap after lunch.

12. Australia

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The sheer size of the fauna in Australia has discouraged many from venturing there. But it’s not as bad as they make it sound.

A user says, “They (Australians) would always tell me that all the stories about Australia are mostly exaggerated to fool outsiders.”

“Of my friends who have remote camped in both Australia and the US, everyone says the US is way scarier. They had far more encounters with dangerous wildlife in the US than in Australia by a long shot.” Another user narrates.

Someone else shares, “An Australian acquaintance told me that the most dangerous thing in Australia was a kangaroo that ran out into the roadway.”

13. Genetically Modified Organisms

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Health fanatics are hyperventilating over GMOs, but how bad are they?

An online user says, “Literally every single plant/animal that has been domesticated since before humans lived in settlements is a GMO.”

Another user adds, “GMOs aren’t inherently dangerous.”

“Technically, we are all a GMO.” Another user adds.

That’s not very comforting, now is it Karen?

14. Strangers

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Who hasn’t been warned against strangers?

A contributor says, “Strangers. Most of the violent crimes you hear happen between acquaintances.”

An online user adds, “People seem to think you’ll be raped and murdered instantly if you talk to anyone you don’t know these days.”

It highly depends on who spoke first, you or the stranger.

15. Vulnerable Feet

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Leaving the feet hanging out of the covers and off the edge of the bed can lead to feelings of anxiety in people of all ages. Many people agree that it’s not a smart move when there are monsters lurking under the bed.


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