The fear of flying is quite widespread with around 1 person in 5 experiencing at least some fear connected with flying. This can range between mild concern and an over powering fear that completely stops you from travelling by plane. Most people fall into the mild to moderate fear category however, and there are ways to manage these fears and cope with them.
There are a number of ways you can look at to try and resolve your fears. Some airlines provide courses to help those with phobias of flying. Hypnosis can be quite useful for some people, while counselling and talk therapies can help you look at the root of your fear and develop ways of coping with it. For many people however, the option of ‘self help’ is enough.
If you’re looking at the self help option, there are a number of tips and tricks you can try to help yourself relax and feel less fearful and more in control of the situation when you do fly. The first place to start is by learning some simple relaxation techniques.
Yoga, centring exercises, meditation and other relaxation techniques can all be useful and different things work for different people so find something that will suit you best. If you’re trying to help younger children then focussing on being in a place they love can help them to relax – get them to describe where they are and what they’re doing and tell you about the things around them. Practice this lots before travelling so that when you’re on the plane and get nervous you can recreate the exercise more easily.
For some people writing down their fears and discussing them can help as can watching films of planes taking off and landing and even visiting the airport and getting used to the whole idea of what’s happening. There are also books out there written by people who have struggled with this and learned to cope, and online forums where you can talk to others and hear their coping mechanisms and techniques.
When you are actually on the plane talk to the people around you – the people you are travelling with or your seat companions or even the flight attendant. Distraction at the right time can help you remain calm through the parts of the flight you find most difficult to experience. Think positive thoughts and try to remember that you’re about 10 times less likely to have an accident flying than you are when climbing your own stairs at home!
One last thing that can help is to eat a decent meal before you take off, and carry some boiled sweets to suck during the journey. Keeping your blood sugar levels up can help you cope better with stressful events. We always recommend travel insurance to help with anxiety of flying too.
We understand that if you have a family holiday booked and you need to over come this quickly, its a good idea to see a specialist,