Healing Lifelong Phobias in a Single Session in a Way that I Never Expected

by Sabriyé Dubrie

Spiritual author, Multidimensional Healer, Founder of Soul Embodiment® Therapy & the School of Soul Embodiment.

Table of Contents

This is my story of how I healed a lifelong phobia in a matter of hours.

As long as I can remember I have disliked elevators and have done everything I could including walking up nine flights of stairs to avoid using them, especially if I have had to use the elevator alone. When I was fifteen I put myself in a bad position at the YMCA in New York asking a young guy I didn’t know to bring me up to my floor in the elevator. Although he was young, he still was a couple of years older than me and things quickly got out of hand when he misinterpreted my fear of elevators for a cute pickup line and was all over me like an eight-armed octopus as soon as the elevator doors closed.

Luckily for me on the way to my room, there were a couple of French teenage boys more my age hanging out in the hallway by joining them, the guy who had brought me up in the elevator realized that what he had hoped for wasn’t happening and left. My virginity stayed intact, but my fear of elevators almost led to sexual assault in that situation, had that hallway been empty things might have gone very differently that night.

I have never quite understood where my fear of elevators came from, I had never had to be rescued out of an elevator or had any experiences in one that created trauma with a big T. I got stuck for a couple of seconds once the year before in a dingy hotel elevator in Paris but that experience was over quickly and I just took the stairs after that, because it was only one or two flights. It was one of those metal art deco elevators that allowed you to see through and it was very old. It had definitely seen the second WW and perhaps even the first WW too. Even at fourteen, I understood that it was the age of the elevator that made it act up at times and simply decided to not use that elevator anymore.

I don’t remember if my fear of elevators started before my teenage years because perhaps I was too young to take the elevator by myself, plus I didn’t live in environments where elevators were common. I grew up in the south side of Amsterdam and suburban California, elevators just weren’t a big part of my life growing up. Perhaps it was also that elevators were still gaining popularity in the 1980s when I grew up and that I would only encounter them while traveling. Later growing up as a teenager I lived in a Dutch village that was so small there were like two streets, twenty houses, and a couple of cows but not an elevator in the miles and miles of farmland surrounding us.

When I moved to the big city in my 20s, elevators became much more of a thing and much more of a pain point that I would try to avoid. Even if that meant walking a ridiculous amount of stairs. I remember when I had to stay in the hospital postpartum for almost two weeks with my youngest daughter who had a rare gestational defect that she died of thirteen days after she was born, I took the stairs. I was of course still bleeding, I had just given birth to another 8-pound baby but if I had to visit another floor and there was no one to go with me, I took the stairs when of course it would have been much more comfortable to take the elevator.

In short, elevators have been a really big problem for me throughout my life. It has not just been a fear, it’s been a phobia that I have managed the same way as public bathrooms, airplanes, and other places that triggered me such as extremely long tunnels or caves, etc. If it had to be diagnosed, I have struggled with a mixture of claustrophobia and agoraphobia for large parts of my life.

But living on a small island now for the past three years, plus traveling always either with my family or at least one family member elevators haven’t been much of an issue. I either didn’t encounter them, or I was with someone while using them. For example during hospital visits for my broken foot in 2021 and my mother’s broken arms in 2022. I was treated in the ER and only had to come back for check-ups, but my mother due to her age was actually hospitalized for a couple of days which included daily visits and me taking the stairs to get to her floor.

Fast forward to last week, when I went back to Amsterdam for the first time in a couple of years and I was getting triggered left and right. First I got nervous about flying again, despite the fact that I am an experienced flyer. Because I know I don’t feel comfortable on a plane, I always book front seats with extra leg space. For some reason, the front seats I booked got canceled and refunded and we had to sit in row 10. The seats are cramped and there are a lot of people in front of you. I was very uncomfortable and had to internally work through a lot of fear coming up. I wasn’t having a panic attack, but I wasn’t relaxed either. It took halfway through the flight to really start to relax.

When we got to the apartment I rented for the week, it turned out to be on the second floor with an elevator thank God because carrying luggage up two flights of stairs is not fun. The first time I had to go down by myself, I naturally took the stairs but these were typical small steep stairs that you will find everywhere in Amsterdam and that you can easily break your neck on. It’s one thing to have steep stairs, but if the stair steps are also half of what they should be you’re better off taking the elevator.

So, what did I do? I made my 18-year-old go down with me in the elevator and asked him to come and get me when I came back. That, of course, felt weird to have to do, but I had to go outside to bring out the trash and my son refused to go for a walk so this was our compromise. We had ordered roti from a Suriname shop which is delicious, but it’s not a smell you want to keep overnight while you sleep because it will stink up the whole place and we both had leftover curry sauce whose smell was starting to dominate the room. However, this was not a long-term solution because my son had his own plans for the week and I could not stay locked up afraid to go down on my own.

To be honest, I was also somewhat annoyed that this still was an issue for me. I had already done so much healing why was I still getting triggered in this way? It was almost as if I was regressing, because although I used to be scared of my own shadow basically. fear isn’t that present in my life these days. As I zoomed in on it, it felt as if the fear programming was being pulled out from my spine. But being a very down-to-earth person, I am cautious of wishful thinking.

I pulled an Inner Union Oracle card and as always the message was spot on. The card I pulled read; ‘Your mission in this lifetime is to shift from fear to love within all layers of your multidimensional being.

The next day I had a session with my mentor and healer that I have worked with for the past 25 years, so I brought in these two situations triggering immense fears that I honestly had thought I had overcome. I reasoned that it was perhaps that I had just gotten my period that made me more susceptible to the fear (as our menstrual cycle tends to trigger the pain body). I had forced myself to take the elevator by myself in the morning as my son was still sleeping and I didn’t want to wake him up. I have clad iron self-discipline so I can make myself do things I am afraid of or don’t want to do.

I pondered why being in an elevator all alone triggered me so much and couldn’t find the answer. The only parallel I could see between planes and elevators was that they are both situations where I don’t feel in control. And it was actually the fear of losing control I found out that day, that triggered so much fear in me that I tried to avoid it as much as I can. I hadn’t let it completely rule my life, but I had created various workarounds and coping mechanisms to manage my fears and lessen their impact on me.

In the session, we went back to an inner child aspect of me that in response to the incest that I had experienced as a little child (2 years old) had used control to keep herself safe from the huge emotions that the overstimulation that took place had caused in her. It was like this aspect of me had lived all her life with one foot on the break not being able to allow in any big emotions including pleasure and joy out of her fear of losing control over herself and her emotions. When I felt through the emotion underneath that had been repressed all these years, there was this deep feeling of nausea and disgust that came up and out. It was really visceral.

In the session, I held the little girl that I was and stroked her hair as she melted back into me. She had been my final block to fully surrendering and letting go, as she had used control to keep herself safe at a time that the people who were meant to keep her safe couldn’t. We saw that on a current incarnation level, this had been the event that triggered the fight-or-flight response and because I was too small to protect myself and because there was no one else to protect me, my survival system had stepped in to protect me.

And protect me it did, because I couldn’t allow myself to lose control I couldn’t allow myself to get drunk or high because in those states I would be out of control. I have never had a problem saying no to alcohol or drugs. On the other hand, the deeper I surrendered to my soul the deeper this survival mechanism got triggered which has led to decades of living with a highly switched-on fight-or-flight response, that now finally got switched off as I no longer needed my survival system to keep me safe in this way.

This session took place on the second day of my 8-day trip and so I had six more days of multiple elevator rides up and down without any issues because the emotional trigger that was triggering my fear all these years before had been removed. Fear thoughts initially still came up, but there wasn’t the same inner emotion to cling to – the fertile ground was gone so to speak. By the end of the week, even the fearful thoughts didn’t come up anymore. Also, the flight back home went pretty well, despite it being a very full flight and being crammed in the second row this time.

That one healing session was absolutely pivotal, in that it changed my reality as drastically as the shift between day and night. In the morning I had to force myself to take the elevator by myself and after the session, it wasn’t a big deal anymore. But it took a lot of previous sessions to get to this layer, where it could shift so dramatically. It’s been a process that has been 25 years in the making.

Granted, we never focussed on healing phobias so perhaps it could have been addressed sooner but as a healer, it really opened my eyes even more to how old unresolved emotions rule our lives without us even realizing it. I mean who would have guessed, that it was childhood trauma that was behind my lifelong phobia to be alone in an elevator and similar situations that triggered my fear of being out of control?

After writing this blog I found that there is a documented link between childhood sexual and physical abuse and the possible development of anxiety disorders. Over the years I have worked on various aspects of this issue with different psychologists and none of them were aware of this connection. They were treated as two separate things, even though they are deeply connected.

I have lived the majority of my adult life not knowing that the fears I struggled with were connected to my childhood experiences, even the postpartum depression with extreme anxiety attacks I had a year after my first child was born is connected. In fact, I now understand that the pregnancy of my first child is what triggered my repressed memories of my early childhood sexual abuse to start to resurface.

But that’s the thing, we can’t find the answer to these questions through the thinking mind and logic. We have to instead go to the unresolved pain, but because our survival system guards our deepest pain we need to work with experienced healers or therapists to be able to navigate past them which is one of the reasons that I even though I am a gifted healer myself, go to other healers for my own healing.

In the end, everything that limits us is something left unresolved from the past that has both roots in our past lives (the macro wounding) and our current life experience (the micro wounding) and needs to be unhooked in both timelines. In the Soul Embodiment® Therapy that’s also what I focus on with my clients to help them find the connection between then and now so that they can pull out the complete pattern by the root. Because of the nature of this method, we do often create huge transformations in one single session because we are able to address the three timelines of the past in one single session, the connection between our childhood, ancestral trauma, and past lives.

Ready To Take Your Manifesting To The Soul Level?

The key to unlocking your Heaven on Earth is healing on a Soul path level.

Everything you want is only being blocked by your subconscious Soul path wounding. The reason why so many people fail to create the life and the reality that they dream of is because their subconscious false beliefs and Soul path wounds are holding them back.

I am here to help you unlock your Next Uplevel in Wholeness, Love, Money & Business and unapologetically embody the truth of who you are while you’re at it!

Do you want a quick check-in just to see where you could come into deeper alignment with your Soul and your Divine Plan? Book a Soul Alignment Session

Do you want to explore your Soul Path history and heal on a Soul Path level?

Book a Soul Embodiment® Therapy session with Sabriyé Dubrie to find the psychological patterns, subconscious programming, and false self-identifications that are keeping you from creating the life and reality you dream of.

With my deepest love,

Sabriye signature

Ultimate Guide to Soul Embodiment

Soul Embodiment Oracle

card back

Free Pick-a-Card Reading to Unlock Your Heaven on Earth

Popular Teachings

Healing the Patriarchy Series: Part II - T ...

Healing the Patriarchy Series: Part II - T ...

There is great interest these days in balancing our inner masculine and feminine parts, to for example attract the right partner or unlock higher levels of spiritual consciousness. The missing piece however in most teachings is undoing our patriarchal conditioning and...

Healing the Patriarchy Series: Part I - Th ...

Healing the Patriarchy Series: Part I - Th ...

There is great interest these days in balancing our inner masculine and feminine parts, to for example attract the right partner or unlock higher levels of spiritual consciousness. The missing piece however in most teachings is undoing our patriarchal conditioning and...

Soul Path Series: Part I - Our Split From  ...

Soul Path Series: Part I - Our Split From ...

The Soul Path series is an eight-article series by Sabriyé Dubrie of Soul Teachings on the origin of our Soul path 'birth' and our evolution into the (human) incarnation experience. The teachings shared are gleaned from my own healing journey on a Soul path level and...

Soul Path Series: Part II - Our Galactic L ...

Soul Path Series: Part II - Our Galactic L ...

The Soul Path series is an eight-article series by Sabriyé Dubrie of Soul Teachings on the origin of our Soul path ‘birth’ and our evolution into the (human) incarnation experience. The teachings shared are gleaned from my own healing journey on a Soul path level and...

Soul Path Series: Part III - Our Lifetimes ...

Soul Path Series: Part III - Our Lifetimes ...

The Soul Path series is an eight-article series by Sabriyé Dubrie of Soul Teachings on the origin of our Soul path ‘birth’ and our evolution into the (human) incarnation experience. The teachings shared are gleaned from my own healing journey on a Soul path level and...

Soul Path Series: Part IV - Masculine &#03 ...

Soul Path Series: Part IV - Masculine  ...

The Soul Path series is an eight-article series by Sabriyé Dubrie of Soul Teachings on the origin of our Soul path ‘birth’ and our evolution into the (human) incarnation experience. The teachings shared are gleaned from my own healing journey on a Soul path level and...

Soul Path Series: Part V - Atlantis, The S ...

Soul Path Series: Part V - Atlantis, The S ...

The Soul Path series is an eight-article series by Sabriyé Dubrie of Soul Teachings on the origin of our Soul path ‘birth’ and our evolution into the (human) incarnation experience. The teachings shared are gleaned from my own healing journey on a Soul path level and...

Soul Path Series: Part VI - The Incarnatio ...

Soul Path Series: Part VI - The Incarnatio ...

The Soul Path series is an eight-article series by Sabriyé Dubrie of Soul Teachings on the origin of our Soul path ‘birth’ and our evolution into the (human) incarnation experience. The teachings shared are gleaned from my own healing journey on a Soul path level and...

Soul Path Series: Part VII - The Lifetimes ...

Soul Path Series: Part VII - The Lifetimes ...

The Soul Path series is an eight-article series by Sabriyé Dubrie of Soul Teachings on the origin of our Soul path ‘birth’ and our evolution into the (human) incarnation experience. The teachings shared are gleaned from my own healing journey on a Soul path level and...

Soul Path Series: Part VIII - Our Current  ...

Soul Path Series: Part VIII - Our Current ...

The Soul Path series is an eight-article series by Sabriyé Dubrie of Soul Teachings on the origin of our Soul path ‘birth’ and our evolution into the (human) incarnation experience. The teachings shared are gleaned from my own healing journey on a Soul path level and...

Ultimate Guide to Soul Embodiment

Free Gift
The Ultimate Guide
to Soul Embodiment

Have you tried everything else to manifest the life of your dreams, but failed? This is because your conscious and your subconscious were not on the same page.

Learn the Secret to Unlocking Your Heaven on Earth!

You have Successfully Subscribed!