One of my first memories of fearing bridges was shortly after I started driving. Crossing bridges in a car was not too bad as long as I was riding, but when I started driving, my fear of bridges started to get a lot worse. Eventually, I could manage the smaller bridges but would avoid the taller ones at all costs. When I was 31, I knew I needed to do something.

One day I was caught on draw bridge and thought I could walk on the bridge to conquer my fear. As my foot touched the concrete, my legs felt like they were made of Jell-o! They were wobbly, and all they wanted to do was get back into the car. I can’t imagine what this looked like to the people behind me sitting in their cars. I am sure that they were thinking I was having some sort of epileptic attack, but they must have had a fear of bridges too because they didn’t get out to help me. After I was sitting back in the car, another fear emerged, claustrophobia. I felt trapped on the bridge and could not move.

Several months later, I wanted to try again to address this unhealthy phobia of bridges. I felt confident because I had been able to cross several Mississippi River bridges recently without soiling my underpants. When I was in New Orleans, I decided to take the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway to conquer my fear once and for all. What better way of doing it than on the longest bridge ever built? I thought that when I made it to the other side, my fear of bridges would subside. I was feeling pretty proud of myself.

My journey to cross this bridge started out OK, but as I approached the point where I would not be able to turn around or exit, my fear of bridges woke up as if to say, “What in the world are you doing?!” I pressed on saying to the bridge, “Bring it on, baby! You are MINE!” The weather was clear and sunny so I could expect a nice leisurely trek across the lake.

I was driving for a few minutes, singing something like “Ain’t no stopping us now, we’re in the groove…” Then, I looked in my rear view mirror and NO LAND was in sight! What do I do? The Causeway Bridge is thirty miles long, but it never occurred to me that at some point I would not be able to see land. Big miscalculation! There was no turnaround, and I knew I had to go to the other side. My thoughts immediately went from “what a wonderful experience to conquer my fear” to “I’M GOING TO DIE!”

I started screaming at the bridge that it had sold me out and plotted its revenge on me. I then saw a sign that said “Road Work Ahead.” I thought what else could go wrong? A minute later, another sign said “One lane traffic ahead,” which had me nearly slamming on the brakes and saying, “You have got to be kidding me!” Then the fatal blow hit: a flashing emergency light, “Fog Ahead, slow to 15mph.” Oh, that can’t be good! Within five minutes the fog hit, but I still had not seen any lane closures. My hands had a death grip on the steering wheel.

I slowed to 15 mph hoping not to be in the lane that dropped off unexpectedly, sending me to a watery death. I kept slowing down to until I was driving at about 5 mph because I wanted to be able to jump out of the car before it plummeted into the lake. As cars raced by me, I could see drivers shouting and blowing their horns. It was as if they were saying, “Be Strong! You can do it!” Well, maybe that wasn’t their intention, but it does sound more positive stating it that way now.

As you can imagine, my nerves were shot. After well over an hour and a half, I finally made it to the other side. “THERE IS A GOD!” I thought to myself as I pulled into a convenience store. I looked at my hands and all my knuckles were white from lack of blood flow. I went to release my death grip, and my fingers did not move for a moment. They were actually stuck to the steering wheel! I realized that I had never moved my 10 o’clock – 2 o’clock grip for the entire trip.

I wanted a soda, but I didn’t want to walk in the store looking like I was riding an invisible motorcycle, so I waited until the blood returned to my fingers. As I was checking out, the man behind the counter told me that just a week earlier there was a 194-car pile up due to the fog. He went on to say some idiot was driving so slow that another car hit him from behind causing a domino effect. I looked at him and smiled weakly saying something like, “What an idiot! Where in the world do these people come from?”

As I look back now, I truly feel grateful. Driving over that bridge forced me to face my deepest fears. If I could make it through that, I could make it through anything. Within a few short years, I had found a job in a bigger city, had taken a promotion that meant I had to fly often, more than tripled my salary, and started my own business helping others.

I have learned that what you focus on expands. During that drive, my focus was, “how could this get any worse?” instead of “look at what I am accomplishing.” When you put your focus on the things that you want, what you want will start showing up.

Author's Bio: 

Bill King is a writer, speaker, and consultant. His latest website teaches the Law of Attraction from a completely different point of view. It’s called, and it is built on the premise that negative thoughts stink. His approach is geared toward Law of Attraction newbies, and he uses humor to break down the barriers many people have to taking full responsibility for the circumstances of their lives. There’s a quiz they can take to check their stink-o-city, tons of easy-to-follow exercises, and even a kindness meter where they can log kind deeds.