For some, horror movies are great. For others, they are too scary. This article shares five tips on how to watch a horror movie if they really freak you out.
Love them or hate them, everybody has an opinion about horror movies.
Some people are hard-core fans of scary movies and love the adrenaline they feel when a ghost appears out of nowhere. Others can’t imagine themselves voluntarily subjecting themselves to two hours or so of torturous tension. Some people can be in between: they watch horror movies even if they get insanely scared at each jump scare, but love it regardless.
So, what’s it about horror movies that some audiences find so spellbinding while others hate them completely? Part of it all has to do with psychology. More specifically, it has to do with people’s “fight or flight” response of the sympathetic nervous system to a perceived threat. Watching a scary movie can trigger this “treat” response because the brain can perceive a threat faster than it can make the distinction on whether it is real or imagined. The result? Our bodies release adrenaline, leading to increased respiration, increased heart rate, and sweating. That being said, truth be told, horror movies are difficult to watch.
So, if your gathering with friends turned out to be a “let’s watch a horror movie” scenario, and you’re already freaking out, you’ve come to the right place. Here are five tips to watch a horror movie if they really freak you out!
1. Remove visual and auditory triggers if you can’t handle them
Horror movies work on visual and auditory triggers. Those things are what keep people on their toes. In other words, using these triggers is how horror movies trigger your fight or flight response.
Whether the camera tracks around the corner to show that person holing a knife, lying in wait, or a scary sound of someone screaming, those are the triggers that make you want to keep your eyes closed or cover your ears to stop the tension you’re feeling.
Guess what? You should to that if these parts of a horror movie freak you out.
It’s absolutely normal to feel the urge to close your eyes if you see someone in the movie opening a door they shouldn’t, or to cover your ears at the sound of someone screaming or suffering. By eliminating most of these triggers (those you can predict), you’ll make the movie a lot less freaking out.
2. Google spoilers
Most people hate spoilers. After all, what’s the point in watching a movie if you already know who will die, who will find their true love, or whether there’s a happy or sad ending? Yet, this may help you with baring through the horror movie your friends insist you should watch.
More precisely, looking up spoilers will help you prepare for those jump-scare moments that are typically the most difficult parts of watching a scary movie. You’ll already know which ghost will appear where or what a character will find behind that forbidden door they should not open.
Simply put, by looking up spoilers from the movie you’re about to watch, you’ll make it more predictable, which will make it a lot less scary.
3. Try to stay logical about your fear
Think about it: what are you really scared about when watching a horror movie? Do you expect the ghost or zombie to come out through the screen and kill you? We’re guessing that the logical part of you is aware of the fact that this won’t happen.
So, use this logic while watching a scary movie to calm your fight or flight response.
Sure, you will still get scared by jump scare triggers that you can’t predict. But, other than that, try to stay logical about your fear. Keep in mind that feeling that tension is not factual because your health and safety aren’t being threatened in the real world.
Remind yourself that you are safe and there’s no actual threat that you should be scared about. When you stay logical and rational, you feel more relaxed about what is happening on the screen because you are aware that it’s just a movie.
4. Keep the lights on
Fear of the dark is a very common fear, and about 11 % of the US population has it. What’s more, fear of darkness is even more common than the fear of heights.
Now, the thing is that the fear of the dark comes from a very logical place, just like your fear caused by horror movies. People fear dark simply because it leads to a lack of visual stimuli, meaning that people can’t know what’s around them.
Combine the fear of not knowing what’s around you with the tension related to watching a horror movie. The result is likely an even more intense scary experience.
So, how about leaving the lights on? Even if you’re not afraid of the dark in your everyday life, it can help you keep the lights on when watching a scary movie simply because you are aware that you’re in an environment that you’re familiar with.
5. Remove the afterward fear
Let’s be honest. You can’t just move your thoughts to a completely different thing as soon as you see the word “ending” on the screen after watching a horror movie. You’ll still feel the tension even after the movie has ended. And, you likely want to remove it as quickly as possible.
There are many ways to remove the afterward fear of watching a horror movie. If you’re a user of natural remedies for relaxation, you can have a delicious snack like Delta 8 Gummies to help you relax and remove the anxiety. Or, you can start a new activity that you find relaxing, like watching a funny YouTube video or pet your dog. Another thing you can do to relax is listening to music or simply share a funny story with your friends.