Battling phobias in the 5th dimension

Battling Phobias in the 5th dimension - image for article by Greg Alder
Photo by Rolands Lakis

There is a fifth dimension, beyond that which is known to man. It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition. – Rod Serling, The Twilight Zone

Have you been in a building where there’s no thirteenth floor. For some of us, the absence of the number 13 is reassuring. For others, it’s silly paranoia.

Which camp are you in?

What about your clients? Don’t know? Ever thought of asking them? No?

What about other client fears and foibles?

Do they suffer from any of these fears?

  • Anthophobia – Fear of flowers
  • Arachibutyrophobia- Fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of the mouth
  • Cathisophobia- Fear of sitting
  • Cibophobia- Fear of food
  • Clinophobia- Fear of going to bed
  • Coulrophobia – Fear of clowns
  • Eosophobia- Fear of daylight
  • Ergophobia- Fear of work
  • Melophobia- Fear of music
  • Ophthalmophobia- Fear of opening one’s eyes
  • Panophobia- Fear of everything
  • Phobophobia- Fear of fear

Don’t know?

Even if you were to go through the pointless exercise of cataloguing client phobias, you’d face the task of trying to remember each of them. Now is it Tanya who won’t fly on Fridays? Or is that Denise? No, Denise is the one who insists on leaving the lights on during a presentation. And then there’s Tony who’ll only accept documents on yellow paper. What’s that one all about? And remember that client from Taiwan who’d panic any time the number 4 cropped up?

The more you learn about your clients, the more obvious it is that they live in Rod Serling’s fifth dimension. As we were reminded in every episode of The Twilight Zone, that’s a very spooky place indeed – a place less inviting even than Dante’s Purgatory. According to some physicists, the fifth dimension is a place inhabited by mini black holes, gravitational waves, hyper energetic particle collisions and gamma ray bursts. It’s where all the things that can’t be explained reside. This includes our clients. Whatever thrills the fifth dimension holds for physicists, we know it as a vortex that sucks in clients and strips them of logic and sensibility and reason and spits them out again with nothing but unfathomable beliefs, antiquated customs and crippling superstitions.

Even if you have paid for your ticket, you do not want to get on that particular flight. No, life’s too short to ferret around for your clients’ phobias. If they have fears, I’m afraid they’re on their own.

Unless, of course, you want to understand your clients and keep their business. That’s a different story all together.

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