What are you characters afraid of? Are they small things to other people, like insects or heights or the dark? Did something happen that caused their fear to develop, like getting attacked by a large dog or stuck in a small space?
How do you use this fear against them in your story?
Let’s be real, we authors create characters to make them suffer. If there’s no suffering, there’s not a very interesting story. Sure, there may be a nice story, and happy stories are important, but the majority of stories spew out drama.
Many readers love the underdog, the one that prevails against their phobia and inspires others to do so as well. But what about those that freeze up when faced with their fear? What are the consequences of not breaking out of that stupor? Do they fail once then prevail the next time? Or do they go through the entire story never being able to look their fear in the eye?
It’s a curious thing to think about.