Overcome your Fear of Flying
Updated: January 23, 2021
Scared of flying. Anxious about getting on a plane?
Polls have shown that around 10 percent of people, have to some degree, a flight phobia, fear of flying, aeroophobia - a fear of being on an aeroplane or helicopter whilst in flight.
Perhaps just the thought of getting on a plane causes you to feel anxious, your heart to race, nauseous feelings and rapid breathing. Some people even take to using strong sedatives to knock themselves out to make sure they are asleep for most of the flight.
You’re probably even aware that you are under threat purely by your own imagination and know that you are far more likely to die in a car accident than a plane crash. However, this fact rarely makes any difference to someone suffering with a fear of flying.
Common Causes of a Fear of Flying
Fear of flying is triggered by a range of things and is different for different people. Often it is a learnt response from parents or can be caused by claustrophobia - a fear of confined or small spaces, by acrophobia - a fear of heights, or sometime just by the fear of having a panic attack in front of other people. In these instances, the issue may have nothing to do with flying. Or it could be a fear of an external loss of control, of a storm, or of something happening to the aircraft which you have no control over
If you have suffered an incident or even read about one, your ability to operate your “fight or flight” response may have become so connected to your emotions, beliefs and memories that your mind has become conditioned to inform you that you are in danger. When you have had a flying incident or trauma, you can expect your mind to want to warn you of potential danger in the future. It will readily protest against any new data you present it with that might disagree with what you have seen, or believe, from the incident that previously occurred. Consequently, your mind becomes on high alert even when your current situation is not threatening.
Can You Help a Fear of Flying?
It’s often difficult to separate your anxiety from real danger because your body has begun to react in exactly the same way to both. However, many people have recovered from their flying phobia so they begin to enjoy a relaxing, calm flight through hypnotherapy sessions.
Hypnotherapy can help you to relax so you can find out what triggers the fear in your subconscious mind. Depending on your individual triggers, you can then learn to set up new patterns of behaving and responding so you reprogram your mind so you start to enjoy flying and are no longer afraid. It wont matter if you can’t remember the initial trigger, as we will be working with your unconscious mind which will recall this information. It may even become a positive experience. So instead of dreading what might happen, you begin to actually look forward to your trip and start to focus on all the positive aspects of the flight and the purpose of the journey
Hypnosis is a little bit like daydreaming. You are aware of what is happening but your mind also drifts off. Most clients find the experience enlightening and are usually very relaxed.
Fear of Flying Tips
Obviously in order to change these associations it would be beneficial for you to have a one to one session. If that isn’t possible here are tips, which although won't take away your trigger, could help you remain calmer on the way:
Drink lots of water, before and during the flight, to avoid dehydration. Try to avoid caffeine and coffee if you know you are prone to panic attacks as they can make your symptoms worse.
Think about why are you going on this flight and what you are looking forward to doing when you get there. If you have a positive outcome or destination you can focus on that when you mind begins to wander.
Make sure that you take deep breaths in through your nose and out through your mouth, when you find you are shallow breathing. Otherwise it will potentially lead to a full-blown panic attack and hyperventilation. If you start to think about your fear, focus on your breathing again until you become calmer.
Being distracted on the flight will help. Have a playlist of music you enjoy, a good book to read, or watch a video. If you are engrossed in something then the sounds or turbulence won’t distract you as much.
Don’t let you fear begin to limit your holiday options, career, or social life. If you flying anxiety is taking over and stopping you achieving what you want to do, contact me for an initial conversation.
Find out more about how your fear of flying could be changed so you can take to the skies in a new more enjoyable way.
I look forward to hearing from you
"Jo really helped me prepare for my flight and enjoy my holiday. Throughout the flight I felt in control. Highly recommend."