On a recent trip to my acupuncturist, I was reminded that Friday the 13th is a really easy day to get an appointment. She told me that people won’t book appointments because they won’t drive. Some people don’t even leave their house or their bed! I was once again, for some reason, surprised; mainly because I consider myself to be a very un-superstitious person. I’ve actually been known to walk under ladders, as long as a black cat isn’t crossing my path at the time.
My curiosity was aroused so I couldn’t wait to get home and investigate the whys, wheres and hows of this apparently widely held superstition. For those who are superstitious about Friday the 13th, the number varies from one to three per calendar year. Every month that begins on a Sunday will have a Friday the 13th. Good to know, I thought. And, the longest period of time without a Friday the 13th is 14 months.For those who are superstitious about Friday the 13th, the number varies from one to three per calendar year. Every month that begins on a Sunday will have a Friday the 13th. #Fridaythe13thClick To Tweet
Fear of Friday the 13th
The fear of Friday the 13th is called friggatriskaidekaphobia, (Frigga is the name of the Norse Goddess whom Friday is named after, and triskaidekaphobia means the fear of the number 13), or paraskevidekatriaphobia. The impact of this day is so widespread that the Stress Management Center and Phobia Institute in Asheville, N.C. estimates that 17 to 21 million people in the United States alone are affected by a fear of Friday the 13th.It's estimated that in the United States, 17-21 million people have phobias and are superstitious. #superstitions #Fridaythe13thClick To Tweet
Wow, that’s a lot of people. I wondered if these people will go to the horror movie “Friday the 13th” because, I admit, I personally don’t like horror movies and always wondered about the type of person who does. That’s another story, so back to the major influence this day has.
Donald Dossey, behavioral scientist and founder of the above Institute, also reported that “[it’s] been estimated that $800-$900 million is lost in business on this day because people will not fly or do business they would normally do.” That’s an enormous impact for one superstition, some say the most widely held superstition of all.
There are varying reports on where Friday the 13th, as a superstition, started. According to folklorists, there is no written evidence of the superstition before the 19th century. There are several theories that it is a modern amalgamation of two older superstitions. The obvious one is that the number 13 is an unlucky number. The other is that Friday is an unlucky day.
Being interested in numerology, I know that 12 is the number of completeness. We see this reflected everywhere in our world, in the twelve months of the year, the twelve signs of the zodiac, the twelve hours on the clock and even the twelve Apostles of Jesus. The list of 12’s goes on and on. Because thirteen is irregular, it infringes on this completeness. There are both biblical and Norse myths that relate to the “unlucky” associations with the number 13.
If I stop to think about it, the fear of the number 13 is so prevalent that most apartment buildings and office towers don’t even have a 13th floor, and many don’t have any rooms with the number 13. When I was recently checked into a room on the 13th floor of a hotel, I admit, I didn’t even realize it might be unlucky until I was in the elevator with another guest who had been placed on the same floor. We fearlessly rode to the floor, commenting and laughing that we might be the only ones checking in who were okay to take a room on the 13th floor. For me, the positive was that I had a great view of the city.
Friday as an unlucky day, however, could date back to the 14th century and “The Canterbury Tales” with other professions regarding Fridays as a bad luck day to start trips or begin new projects. Black Friday, the infamous stock market crash day, is just one of the unlucky associations tied to a Friday. Personally, knowing Friday is Venus day, I love it and look forward to it as my art class is on Friday mornings. I know there are many working girls and guys who spend many of their weekdays waiting for it and proclaiming TGIF (Thank God It’s Friday) when it arrives. Maybe just not when it’s a Friday the 13th, I suppose.
Good News About Friday the 13th
There is so much written about Friday the 13th, I was encouraged to find that there is good news, about overcoming the fear of it. Dossey, among others, offers ways of changing the negative, “bad luck” association with this day, by thinking positive, pleasant thoughts, which in turn creates more pleasant feelings, which might then help diminish the overwhelming aspect of the fear.
Folklore remedies offer up the following: Climb to the top of a mountain or skyscraper and burn all the socks you own that have holes in them. Or, stand on your head and eat a piece of gristle. Reminds me that if you are open to finding it, there is always hope.
So, whatever you decide to do this coming Friday the 13th, I wish you all good luck and an especially wonderful day. As for me, I know for sure I’m getting out of bed, leaving my house, getting in my car and driving, this year to my “Art from the Heart” Friday morning workshop. Are you superstitious about Friday the 13th?
Looking for something to do on Friday the 13th? How about doing something good for your health, as there is definitely nothing “scary” about committing to good health!
PostScript: In 2019 there are two Friday the 13ths, in September and December.
I’m not one to be superstitious and I’ve got to tell you I had no idea so many people feared Friday the 13th. I’m pretty sure, they are just attracting that sort of energy towards them on that day, And of course that just confirms their superstitions, right?
Most of the people who’ve read this post are also not superstitious, Lisa. I was also surprised at how many people are so fearful of Friday the 13th and the lengths they go to, to avoid doing anything on the day. Yes, if we believe that what we focus on multiples, then perhaps they are perpetuating their superstitions.
Wow, superstitions are amazingly powerful, yet I don’t know any superstitious person who really knows why they feel that way. Very subconscious. I personally don’t give Friday the 13th a second thought. I don’t believe in luck; I believe in God.
Carol Rundle recently posted…3 Interesting Facts About Dairy Products in the Bible
It is amazing what people buy into and believe, Carol. Especially relating to superstitions. I think we do take on some of the harmless superstitions without even realizing that they are superstitions. I know someone else said something about saying “knock on wood”, which is a superstition. I also don’t give Friday the 13th much thought. You are very grounded in beliefs and that is very admirable.
Hi Beverley 🙂
Interesting and detailed information about Friday the 13th 🙂 I own a black cat, so I am not very superstitious at all lol
Thanks for the great read!
Joan M Harrington recently posted…What Is The Biggest Mistake You Can Make In Your Business?
Thanks for sharing about your black cat, Joan. Apparently many people will not adopt either a black cat or a black dog because of superstitions. How sad to me. Glad you enjoyed the read too. 🙂
Wow, I learned a lot of new info in your post Beverley. Thanks.
I am not superstitious; however, I do some things that would indicate to an onlooker that I am. Take sneezing, for example. When someone sneezes, I mindlessly call out “Bless you”. Sometimes, I use the word “gezundheit,” but all blessing nonetheless, all calling good down upon us.
At first I thought little of it. After all the idea of blessing someone when they sneeze is rooted in superstition, an archaic belief that in the act of sneezing the soul is thrown from the body, and a blessing is needed for spiritual protection. Today, it is usually offered as no more than a courtesy, a polite response that has come to be socially accepted and expected, yes?
Rachel Lavern recently posted…How to Select Your Ideal Clients
So happy to hear you learned a lot from this post, Rachel! I think you are right about how we humans have taken on some “mindless” habits that could originate from superstitions. I believe “knock on wood” is another one that I know people do all the time. And you are correct when you say that the original depth or intensity of the superstition, is watered down in today’s culture and is simply something we do as a polite way of behaving. Curious isn’t it? Thanks for sharing, as this adds some new food for thought to the conversation.
Beverley – Well, I’m replying to your post on Friday the 13th – and there’s supposed to be a full moon tonite! Isn’t it funny what people do and don’t believe!
Joan Potter recently posted…FIRST, DO NO HARM
Hope your Friday the 13th with the full moon was actually delightful for you Joan. And I agree with you, it is quite fascinating what people do and don’t believe and where those beliefs actually originated too.
Happy Friday the 13th darling! Ah so many quirks and stories and random beliefs – true or not. I have definitely played along in some of those throughout my life too. I am not really sure what I think of it all now. But I do like the Venus picture and used to have it a print on my bathroom wall but with the block windows and Arizona sun – it faded. 🙂 I need something interesting to post on social media about this day – I think this is the one to share. Having fun….
Teresa recently posted…Fake. Fearful. Forgotten.
Agree with you about Friday the 13th, Teresa. Yes, there are so many stories and myths and things people have bought into as truths. I think we all have tapped into some of the superstitions we’ve been exposed to and include them in our lives without even being conscious of it. Venus Day is Friday, so any Friday the 13th, I would much prefer to think of the beauty of the Goddess Venus than of superstitions. Thanks for sharing this piece and I hope your tribe enjoyed it too!
That’s an exhaustive look at the topic! 😉 I’m not superstitious about anything (knock on wood!); the 13th is like any other day of the month to me. And regarding black cats, Brando brings me luck (and love) as opposed to evil. Now if I can just stop him from beating up on Simba, life will be perfect!
Thanks, I think, Jackie! 🙂 As far as black cats, I have never been averse to them and am shocked that people won’t adopt black cats because of the fear of them. Yes, I think cats, regardless of colour, bring joy, love and luck to their owners. Simba will have to learn to stand up to him. Like you, I am not superstitious, although I think my mother might be, as I remember her saying “knock on wood” a few times and she also believes wearing a red ribbon will stave off the evil eye. Personally, I’ve never bought into any of those “beliefs”.
When it comes to Friday the 13th, the only thing I do is be careful of all the folks around me who are afraid of Friday the 13th. That’s when they are the most dangerous. The power to believe in the negative seems to attract a lot of people. I believe that every day is a positive day for great things.
Joyce Hansen recently posted…What’s important in your business?
Love your Friday the 13th philosophy Joyce! I have never been too concerned about it, although I also would stay away from those who buy into the scary and negative that surrounds it. And yes, the power to believe the negative does seem to engulf a lot of people, as the stats show. Aren’t we seeing that now in the U.S. with the presidential primaries. Seems we have the positive and the negative equally gaining ground. Yes, each day is an opportunity to see the positive and to walk through our lives that way.
Great information about Friday the 13th. I am going for a message on Friday the 13th. 🙂 To be honest, sometimes I am superstitious and other times, I’m not. I think it has to do with confidence. If I feel confident, than I am not superstitious. Interesting, right? Thanks for sharing.
Sabrina Quairoli recently posted…An Easy Way To Get Technology Support Through Twitter
Enjoy your massage on Friday the 13th, Sabrina! A girl after my own heart. 🙂 I love hearing that you influence your reaction to Friday 13th based on how confident you are feeling in the moment or on the day. It is very interesting indeed. Something for you to explore further.
I am with you… not too fond of scary movies either… I used to be though.. but as I aged, lost interest.. not digging the feeling.. and damn if some of those people are idiots… don’t go upstairs when you hear shit, ya know? lol
Not one to be superstitious either… but great post, nonetheless.
Kristen Wilson recently posted…Name Your Pictures as You Download Them
I think in my entire life, I’ve only seen two movies that qualified as scary, Kristen. I don’t do dark and menacing very well. Always looking for the light, I guess. I cannot even imagine what the payoff is for those people who are horror film fanatics. I’m not very superstitious either, so am always surprised to hear how many people are!
It’s fascinating how fear of Friday the 13th has become so prevalent, Beverley. I agree that positive thinking is key to avoiding bad luck associated with the day (thankfully, as standing on my head eating gristle is not something I want to do). Did you know in some places in France you can hire a 14th diner to avoid having a party of 13? I found it interesting that every month that begins on a Sunday will have a Friday 13th.
Tamuria recently posted…HOW TO TURN STICKS INTO WONDERFUL AND USEFUL OBJECTS
I’m with you about not wanting to stand on my head and eat gristle, Tami. 😉 I guess you and I are the positive thinking gals when it comes to Friday the 13th. I had not heard of this French fact. How wonderful that for the very superstitious, they can hire a 14th diner so they can circumvent being a party of 13. Amazing the lengths people will go to to avoid the number 13. Yes, I had forgotten that months that start on a Sunday will mean there will be a Friday the 13th. Happy I realized it in time to share this piece!
Personally I am not very superstitious, but I find this topic fascinating. It has a cool long name too.
Christy Soukhamneut recently posted…10 Ways to Lose Your Home (PART 2)
Glad you liked the name that Friday the 13th originated from, Christy! It is a very fascinating topic and like you, I am not at all superstitious.
I have to laugh, Beverley–this is one of my favorite days! The number 13 was sacred to the ancient Goddess communities, which pre-dated Christianity by millennia. 13 represented the number of menstrual cycles in the year, so was associated with blood, fertility, the moon in her cycles.
Of course, as always happens when one culture overtakes another, language and religion are obliterated. The early Hebrews and then Christians, in order to conquer and then assimilate the Goddess-worshiping Pagan peoples, made everything of the Goddess to be that of the devil. Including the number 13.
It became so entrenched in the common lore, that even today folks are terrified of it!
Susan Mary Malone recently posted…This Is Not A Newsflash But It Is A Damn Good Story
Thanks so much for sharing all the lovely info about the number 13 and how it was sacred to ancient Goddess communities. We talk about that in our art classes as well. It is amazing how something that starts out with such a natural and positive impulse, ends up being moulded and used to frightened so many people for so long. It is so startling to me how many people have bought into this fear and perpetuate it in their lives, Susan! Appreciate all the added info you shared. It enriches the story!
I’ve decided to maintain my upbeat attitude about Friday the 13th. In fact, need to have a great morning inspiration for the day. I’m not superstitious and do find it humorous that so many people are. And as I’ve always loved my career and now my business, Friday is another opportunity, not a doorway to the weekend.
Love the idea of having a positive inspiration for the day, Roslyn. I have never given much thought either to Friday the 13th and as I make my own schedule, I also don’t see Friday as a gateway to the weekend. Every day has its own equal value for me, and as I mentioned, Friday is Venus day and often I am creating art on that day. So that is a lovely way to spend any Friday, including Friday the 13th!
The only time I was frightened by Friday the 13th was watching the first movie in that series after which I watched all the others for amusement. They should never have made the sequels, Beverley.
Funnily enough the Japanese consider 13 to be a lucky number and Friday is the day that we are supposed to pray to Goddess Lakshmi according to the Hindu faith and are advised to wear diamonds or zircons to attract prosperity.
All said and done, I do observe this day to see if there is anything to it and so far, so good. 🙂
Vatsala Shukla recently posted…Do you consider Counteroffers when new opportunities beckon?
You are a brave woman Vatsala, to be able to watch horror films for amusement. I find my imagination is too powerful and the images stay with me for days! So, I don’t watch them. Even some TV shows that are excessively violent, stay with me for days unfortunately.
I knew that in Japan Friday the 13th is considered lucky, so thanks for the reminder. The fascinating thing is seeing that in different cultures both the number 13 and the day, have rituals and positive meanings aligned with them. As for me, I often forget it is Friday the 13th until much later in the day. Yes, it is wise to stay observant and see what shows up during the day. 🙂 Enjoy yours!
Howdy I am so excited I found your blog page, I really found
you by error, while I was browsing on Yahoo for something else, Anyhow I am here now and would just like to say kudos for a marvelous post and a all round entertaining blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to read it all at the moment but I have book-marked it and also added in your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read more, Please do keep up the fantastic work.
antique slot machines montana recently posted…antique slot machines montana
Thanks for finding me here and so happy you enjoyed this post and that you bookmarked it for the future! Look forward to having you come back again. Appreciate your comment!
I’m not that much оf a internet reader to be honest but your site’s really
nice, keep іt up! I’ll go ahead and bookmark your website to come back lateг on. Cheers
Side Effects recently posted…Side Effects
Thanks for the thumbs up on my website. Happy you stopped by and have decided to visit again in the future. Cheers to you too!
We were sailing on a cruise on friday the 13th and it was my sister-in-laws boyfriends birthday. we made sure we sat in seats numbered 13, we played bingo and had 13 on each card but didn’t win. We didn’t care- we laughed, and because of our loving relationship born on this day, I have no superstitions that I am aware of. Fun post.
Roslyn Tanner Evans recently posted…Writing Process Blog: My Journey into the Unknown
Love how the number 13 became the focus of your day, Roslyn! Sounds like a fun way to enjoy not only your cruise, but Friday the 13th as well. Hope overall, you cruise and your adventures were lucky. Glad you enjoyed the post as well.
Well, I’m happy to announce that Friday the 13th came and went, complete with full moon, and nothing untoward happened around me! Again. 😉 I would imagine that many superstitions were created when people did not have answers for different phenomena … and with our human need to find an explanation for most everything, found one that fit. That these superstitions persist is what is even more fascinating. $800-900 million in lost business? That’s a lot of persistent superstition!
Sharon O’Day recently posted…Life Lessons from Wise Women
It is amazing how superstitions paralyze people Sharon, especially when you read how much loss of business results. I too was shocked, even to hear from my acupuncturist, that people don’t even get out of bed on Friday the 13th! It is interesting, wherever these superstitions started or what precipitated them, how they grab hold of the human psyche and last, long after explanations should dispel them. Same thing with calories. That’s another post though. 🙂
What a fun post. The play I am in currently opened this past Friday. I am happy to say that it was a roaring success – so no superstition here. (At least for this year! Hehe.)
A. Lynn Jesus recently posted…Are You a Conscious Creator of Life?
Congrats on the play A. Lynn! And how wonderful to open on Friday the 13th to great success. Sounds like the producers aren’t superstitious either, especially premiering their production on Friday the 13th! Have a fun run and continued good luck with it.
I enjoyed reading about Friday the 13th! I’m not superstitious, but I always seem to think about it when a 13th falls on a Friday. It reminds me of a Truman Capote short story in which a character “always stays in bed on Friday the 13th”. I like the advice to focus on the positive. I believe we see pretty much see what we look for on most days. Great post!
Gina recently posted…Saints, Sinners, and Fathers Day
It is a curious thing Gina, that even those of us who aren’t superstitious, still have it cross our minds of a supposedly “superstitious” day. I was shocked when my acupuncturist told me that people don’t get out of bed or leave their house on Friday the 13th and that’s what prompted me to the research and write this piece. Glad the info was appreciated and I thank you for joining in the conversation here.
Personally, I’m not superstitious at all but I understand why people are and I’m comfortable with others being so.
Today being both Friday the 13th and a full moon, it should be interesting to see how those with superstitions find their day! Not superstitions either Don, and strive to understand where those superstitions come from in others. Have a lucky day!
I find Friday the 13th to be a lucky day. Looking forward to it. Also, – I notice that your comments date back to September 1, 2011. Not sure if they go with this article. You might want to check with your webmaster.
Martha Giffen recently posted…How to Get Started Using Twitter for Business
Sounds like lots of us actually have good luck on Friday the 13th, which based on my research, is fabulous to hear. This post originated on my older blog in 2011 and some of the comments do date back to then, you’re right. The postscript was added to let readers know that this year we only have one Friday the 13th, in June and that is happens to be a Full Moon on the same day! Should be interesting for those who have superstitions.
Oh my! This is very eye opening. I had no idea that there was such a history behind Friday the 13th and the fear of it. I honestly don’t believe un superstition, but I found this information very intriguing. We are approaching one soon so it is very interesting to see what happens that folks will blame on the date
Veronica recently posted…Taking Your Dorm Room From Drab to Fab
It was quite interesting to do the research on this Veronica, and I was incredibly surprised myself to hear about how many people had such deep seated superstitions. I’m not superstitious either and I agree with you that it is intriguing to know so many are dealing with phobias and superstitions that stop them from living their lives without fear. This Friday the 13th is also a full moon, so we will see how the day unfolds. 🙂
I normally don’t let Friday the 13th bother me. It is just another day but last Friday the 13th, was a bit disastrous. Some lady decided to open her door into my car as I was pulling into my parking spot. They ended up hitting and running because they didn’t want to wait any longer for the cops to get there. The cops were a bit slow b/c it was in a parking lot and not a priority call. When I asked for insurance, she gave me excuses and said she didn’t have a copy of it. Luckily, I wrote down their license plate number. Come to find out they left because they didn’t have insurance on their car. My insurance company picked up the tab under my uninsured policy (thank goodness for full coverage ins). Last I heard they hadn’t picked up the owner of the car.
What an unfortunate series of events that happened to you last Friday the 13th. I totally get why you would remember that day very vividly. Hopefully this year, it will be a memorable day in a very lucky way, Christy! Wishing you a good luck Friday the 13th this year.
Wow, this is very interesting! I’m not very superstitious, but I guess I am to a certain degree. 🙂
When I did the research, I was incredibly surprised at how many people were plagued by superstitions. I think for all of us, there are some things that would have us say we are superstitious to a certain degree. 😉
Friday the 13th has always been a lucky day for us. Both my niece and nephew were born on Friday the 13th. I know there’s a lot of negative superstition about Friday the 13th, but I always look forward to it and figure it’s going to be a great day!
Since writing this piece, Tina, seems more people I know find Friday the 13th luck vs. unlucky. And lots of people have relatives or people they know born on that day, which makes it a wonderful way to remember Friday the 13th!
This is great! The idea of a superstition so wide spread is very interesting, and you shared some great facts about the possibilities and theories of how it may have come about. Thank you for sharing!
Researching this was very surprising to me as well Meryl, as I had no idea that superstitions were so prevalent and debilitating for some people. Had fun exploring the topic and glad you enjoyed it.
Thanks for sharing this very interesting post, Beverley. Personally, I’ve found Friday 13th to be just like any other day. Of course, I still won’t walk under a ladder or step on a crack! I’m glad you’ll be going out and doing your thing! 😉
Alexandra McAllister recently posted…Daily Marketing Coach Training System
Glad you enjoyed the post Alexandra! I too find this preoccupation with superstitions fascinating and agree I am not at all superstitious. Of course I wouldn’t walk under a ladder leaned against the wall at the same time as a black cat. 😉 Have a good luck Friday the 13th.
Great article, Beverley! I always visit all your blogs. Thanks for posting this informative article.
Lorii Abela recently posted…Should You Stop Dating And Let Yourself Be Wooed?
Thanks for always visiting my blog Lorii! Glad you liked the info in this one too. Have a lucky Friday the 13th!
I believe there are a few cultures in which Friday the 13th is actually a good thing.
So I’ve heard Meli. I believe a friend told me in Italy Friday the 13th is considered a lucky day. Interesting how beliefs change by culture.
Woah! I’m really enjoying the template/theme of this blog.
It’s simple, yet effective. A lot of times it’s tough to get that “perfect balance” between superb
usability and visual appearance. I must say that you’ve done a
excellent job with this. In addition, the
blog loads very quick for me on Firefox. Outstanding
Thanks for stopping by Margareta! Appreciate your comments and delighted that you enjoy the visual appeal and balance in the blog. Also happy it loads quickly in Firefox. Thanks again.
Excellent blog here! Also your site loads up fast! What web host are you using? Can I get your affiliate link to your host? I wish my web site loaded up as quickly as yours lol
Thanks Clay for stopping by. At this point no affiliate link but will let you know. I’m a big Astrology fan myself. Cheers!
Nice post. I was checking constantly this blog and I am impressed! Very helpful info specifically the last part 🙂 I care for such information a lot. I was looking for this certain info for a long time. Thank you and best of luck.
Thanks Alana. Nice to know someone is checking for new posts. Always delighted to be helpful too! Hope to hear from you on other posts in the future.
Thank you a lot for providing individuals with such a breathtaking opportunity to check tips from this web site. It’s always so awesome and jam-packed with a great time for me and my office colleagues to visit the blog a minimum of thrice every week to read the new items you will have. Not to mention, I’m at all times amazed for the unbelievable hints you give. Some 4 areas in this article are undeniably the most beneficial I have had.
Thanks Ressie. Happy to hear you found some things that will be beneficial for you. Appreciate you taking the time to join in the conversation and thanks for having your colleagues visit as well. Cheers and look forward to you staying in the conversation on other pieces.
At last, someone comes up with the “right” asnwer!
Hi Chuckles. The right answer. Hmmm. Glad this piece delivered on that. Thanks for joining in here!