The fear of flying can put a damper on your travel plans. If you are submerged in a small plane, you feel claustrophobic, uncontrollable and anxious, here is how you take care of it to achieve the trip of your dreams.
People shudder at the idea of getting on the plane for several reasons. They may be afraid of heights or simply hate being stuck between strangers for hours. Other typical fears include a plane malfunction or crash, terrorist hijackings and not being in control. Even if statistics to show that flying in an airplane is safer than driving in a car, it is difficult to shake these fears with the only logic.
Here are some common steps to help you overcome this anxiety.
Talk to a professional
We suggest starting here even with mild cases of flight anxiety. Talking about your fears with an unbiased professional can help you get in touch with the root of your anxiety.
Is it limited space? The lack of fresh air? Or all the assumptions?
Whatever it is, knowing your specific fears means that you can go ahead with more knowledge.
Some popular options to combat your fear of stealing include cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), Exhibition therapy, and neurofeedback (also known as EEG biofeedback). Some people even try hypnosisHowever, we first recommend well-established methods such as CBT.
If you can not afford a therapy, consider recruiting a friend who will accompany you and listen to you while you talk about all your fears. Make sure that they act as a harmony table, allowing you to treat everything without offering concrete suggestions.
You can also create a free online help program to overcome your fear of flying at Anxiétés.com.
Learn more about planes
Even though the use of logic is not enough to combat a deep-seated fear or phobia, learning as much as possible can help you remember that even when you feel in danger, you have every chance to stay totally safe.
Spend some time reading about the planes, their structure, their mechanics, what happens during the turbulence, even the protocol step by step in case of emergency. By knowing how much safety training all pilots and flight attendants receive, you will be assured that you are in good hands.
Once aboard the plane, pay attention to the safety demonstration. This will allow you to focus on something and help you feel better prepared during the flight. You can even ask to take a look inside the cockpit – sometimes seeing all the details helps dispel the mystery of what a plane is.
Find your ideal seat
Where you sit in the plane can make all the difference. Near the front has less turbulence and is often quieter. Some people find the seat near the window more comforting as it allows them to look outside, allowing them to better control their surroundings. Others feel better in the driveway so they can get up as needed.
If you have additional funds, definitely improve. Being in a wider and more comfortable seat will not eliminate your anxiety, but will help make your flight a little more enjoyable.
Meditation and medication
silverkblackstock / Shutterstock
First, try meditation. You can start by attending classes at home or view these 6 best apps to help calm nervous flyers. Download the tracks in advance and listen to them at the airport, boarding or at any moment of panic. Concentrate on your breathing by taking deep, regular deep breaths.
Medications can help alleviate anxiety in flight. You can talk to your doctor about getting a prescription for anxiety medication or ordering an alcoholic beverage once on board (but do not mix drugs with alcohol!).
Avoid caffeine, because it will make you more nervous and more awake, and the goal is to soften you.
Navigating in a crowded airport can make all travelers feel exhausted, anxious or overwhelmed. If you are already worried about the flight itself, you certainly want to minimize the stress before. Here are some tips to keep your cool once you enter a busy airport.
To arrive early: If they say to arrive two hours before your flight, listen to this advice. This will give you enough time to collect your belongings, check your luggage, go to the bathroom, take the security, and perhaps have a drink or snack before boarding.
Use an airport lounge: Many lounges offer a daily pass and are well worth the money spent. The seats are comfortable and snacks, drinks and free Wi-Fi are usually available. It's a great opportunity to lean back, close your eyes and listen to a soothing meditation app.
TSA PreCheck: Even if you do not plan a lot of traveling, It's really worth it. Security lines can be incredibly long, especially during holidays. The logistics of managing your luggage, removing your shoes, laptops, etc. can make you turn your head. The pre-check line is often shorter and much easier to navigate. In addition, you keep your shoes!
Look through the window: Spend time watching the planes take off and land. If looking at planes causes some anxiety, breathe deeply through.
Power through your fears
In the end, it's up to you to decide how much you want to overcome this fear. If arriving in Aruba is at the top of your to-do list, practice these deep breaths and trust yourself.
Spend some time separating fear from danger. Remember, even if you feel anxious, you are always safe.
And above all, anticipate your anxiety. If you simply ignore it, you will be caught off guard and even more powerful. By kissing her, you will get more control over the situation.
Learning to overcome any fear or phobia is a challenge. The benefits for this one include opening your world to endless possibilities of travel and adventures. Just remember to take one step – and one breath – at a time. And if possible, take a friend.