How To Overcome Telephobia And Make More Follow-Up Calls

I suffer from telephobia. Look it up! It’s a real thing!

The truth is A LOT of people suffer from the same affliction. It’s just not a fun thing to do!

Unfortunately, many of those people, myself included ARE IN SALES!

Phone follow-up is a critical part of our jobs. I’ll share with you my tricks for getting over telephobia.

It’s time to make some follow-up calls. Let’s see, what else is it time to do?

  • Fill out your commission report.
  • Catch up on emails.
  • Check social media. (Bound to find some leads there, right?)
  • Floss your teeth.
  • Check social media again.
  • Pull up your Ring Video Doorbell to see if your Amazon package has arrived.
  • Hey, you’re off in 20 minutes. You don’t have time for follow-up calls.

What is it about making follow-up calls that makes our brain say, “Oh, I don’t want to do this!”

I can only tell you this. You can override your brain.

And you need to if you want to win.

Sometimes you don’t want to do the very thing that you know you’re supposed to do.

We don’t want to do the very things that we know we are supposed to do, and oftentimes the reason we don’t want to do it is because it stresses out the brain.

When we think about things that are undesirable, our brain gets stressed out.

The brain is an energy-conserving machine.

Now, part of that is primitive.

You just never know when a threat is going to come around.

This goes back to the days when we were worried about saber tooth tigers.

And part of this is chemical. It’s dopamine-related.

Dopamine is the happy hormone.

Our brains get flooded with it when we anticipate fun things or things that we enjoy.

Dopamine goes away when we think about the other stuff.

Now, in my book, Follow Up and Close the Sale, I talk about an issue called telephobia. It’s a thing. Look it up.

There’s a trigger in our brain that says, “Don’t make the call. Something bad will happen.”

This is closely connected to a psychological tendency towards catastrophizing.

We think of the worst-case scenario, in this case, rejection, and we play it out in our mind.

We don’t just think the customer is going to say no. We think we’re going to get punched in the face.

Now, the very idea of call reluctance is all in your head, but you already knew that, didn’t you?

The question is, what do we do about it?

And the remedy is that you need to override your brain. You need to manipulate your brain chemicals, and here’s my advice.

Defer the dopamine. Defer the dopamine. Use the dopamine chase as a reward.

Suppose I have two things to do today.

Number one, I have to make my follow-up calls, and number two, I need to play with the dog.

Now, if you’re a dog person, you really want to play with your dog. I know I do.

It’s a dopamine-inducing activity. Here’s the problem.

If you do your high dopamine activities first, your brain will simply want more of it. So then when it’s time to do something lower dopamine, like making a phone call, your brain is dulled.

So use that to your advantage. Use your high dopamine activity as a reward.

Make the calls.

Until next time, learn more, to earn more.


Are you floating in the GOOD ENOUGH Zone™ or stuck in the SHUTDOWN Zone™?

from Jeff’s new book, Follow Up and Close the Sale

The Follow-up Resistance Scorecard™ will help you to assess those areas where Resistance presents a stumbling block to your sales success.

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About the Author: Jeff Shore

Jeff Shore

Jeff Shore is the Founder and President of Shore Consulting, Inc. a company specializing in field-tested and proven consumer psychology-based sales training programs.

Jeff is a top-selling author, host of the popular sales podcast, The Buyer’s Mind, and an award-winning keynote speaker. He holds the prestigious Certified Speaking Professional designation from the National Speakers Association and is a member of the NSA’s exclusive Million Dollar Speaker’s Group.

With over 30 years of real-world, frontline experience, Jeff’s advanced sales strategies spring from extensive research into the psychology of buying and selling. He teaches salespeople how to climb inside the mind of their customers to sell the way their buyers want to buy. Using these modern, game-changing techniques, Jeff Shore’s clients generated over $30 billion in sales last year.