How to Overcome the Fear of Flying in an Airplane
Learn about 12 useful Therapeutic Tips. How to Fly without Fear?
Sweaty hands, trembling legs, palpitations of the heart, facial pallor, breathing difficulties, nausea and even fainting - no, this is not a description of a person waiting for an exam result or a recruitment interview - although this could, of course, be the case. These are typical symptoms for people who suffer from aviophobia, i.e., panicky fear of flying a plane. Fear of flying sometimes takes on such proportions that it hinders normal functioning, and the help of a therapist is necessary.
Only 4 percent of people die in plane accidents! Statistically, the chances of survival are 96%.
How to Fly without Fear?
However, the statistics for air accidents are very optimistic. The risk of death in a car accident is almost 1600 times higher than in an airplane crash. Does that mean we should stop driving cars?
A sense of anxiety and panicky fear are often completely irrational. It's no use explaining to a person with a phobia that their fear is merely pointless. Is a visit to the psychologist's office necessary then?
The answer is: it depends on. Before we go to a specialist, we can test several methods of dealing with anxiety. If they help, it's excellent, and if they don't, you should seek medical help.
How to overcome the fear of flying a plane
The most important thing in "home" therapy is that it is based on the small steps method. As children, we first learn to sit down, and only then to walk and run. Flying anxiety should be managed similarly. It is best to start like this.
#1 Identify and name your fears
Tell me what you're terrified of. Is it turbulence, or is it an engine failure or a pressure drop in the cabin? It may also turn out that you are terrified not of the flight itself, but of falling. Once you have established what scares you, you can start managing it.
#2 Get the necessary knowledge
Get on the plane with the latest in flying knowledge. Check the current statistics on air accidents vs. car accidents. Don't design catastrophic visions in your head; don't watch airplane crash programs. Instead, gain expertise and remember that:
- every pilot goes through a check flight and psychological tests
- every pilot has to "fly" for thousands of hours before he or she can take the wheel of a passenger aircraft
- each pilot checks and improves his or her piloting skills in simulation cabin training
- every plane has a fuel supply - just in case
#3 Demonstrate the turbulence
Remember once and for all that turbulence is typical for flying. The same principle applies to birds floating in the air. The phenomenon of turbulence is perceived differently by aircraft crew and passengers. At ebatuk.org we can read a report on a particular flight from 2016, which is as follows:
"I thought we were already falling," said the Canadian daily Jordan Case, a passenger on a 206 American Airlines flight from Miami to Milan. The reactions of other flight participants were similar. They called the situation terrible compared to catastrophic films, claiming to have wiped themselves to death.
- It was not pleasant," said the pilot of the plane, Captain Bertrand Lecocq. For the crew, turbulence is nothing unusual or hazardous. It's just an inconvenience."
#4 Try to upgrade to business class
If you're afraid of flying a plane, the idea for its survival might just be a dream. By buying a ticket in a higher class of travel or trying the significant upgrade, you will be able to go to sleep comfortably and wake up just before landing.
I'm sure you'll also be interested in the text How to move to business class - that's a plane upgrade without secrets.
#5 Select a seat at the beginning of the plane
You know for sure that if you take a seat at the back of the bus, you'll probably be more likely to experience shocks than sitting right behind the driver. It's very similar in an airplane, so always choose the seats in the front row. Another relatively comfortable position is at the height of its wings.
#6 Separate fear from danger
In the same way, our body reacts to fear and real danger, although, in reality, these are two different issues. So try to realize that fear is only fear, and you are not threatened by anything. It is certainly not easy, but as therapists say, it is possible to practice.
#7 Repeat in your mind that "flying is very safe."
If turbulence or other stressful situations occur during the flight, just close your eyes, breathe deeply and like a mantra repeat in your mind, "I am safe, flying is very safe." Try to focus on your breathing and imagine how the air circulates through your body continuously from head to foot.
#8 During and just before the flight, give up coffee and alcohol.
You don't need any form of extra stimulation now. On the contrary, reach for herbal teas and herbal sedatives. Your pharmacist will undoubtedly help you choose them.
#9 Tell your fears to those sitting next door
Tell the "plane" neighbor; you're afraid to fly. Don't be scared of being laughed at; at most, you won't understand. I'm sure you'll be able to count on your fellow passengers' support if you get nervous. Remember that you will not be treated like a freak in this way but like a person requiring assistance and help.
#10 Apprecite every flight
Don't think of another plane ride as punishment from heaven. Consider it an opportunity to practice because you know perfectly well that "practice makes the master." So fly as often as you can.
#11 Sign up for flying lessons
Perhaps the moment you sit behind the wheel of an airplane will make you understand tangibl3 what flying is really about. After all, steering an aircraft is pure mathematics and physics. Of course, flying lessons are quite expensive to deal with a phobia, but if it proves useful.
#12 Look in the cockpit
Many therapists claim that direct contact with the person responsible for our safety can work miracles. A pilot will certainly not drive you out of the cockpit if you openly admit that you suffer from aviophobia. What's more, he will assure you that you are in the best hands and can feel 100% safe.
It is also worth realizing that sometimes other fears overlap with the fear of flying.
The most popular are:
- claustrophobia - the anxiety of closed spaces,
- agoraphobia - the fear of open space, or
- acrophobia - height anxiety.
On the other hand, others are afraid that they cannot control what happens to the machine. So, in the end, it may turn out that the fear of flying is not our biggest problem.
How to overcome fear of flying quickly
To sum up, one more reflection comes to my mind. It seems to me that the fear of flying is mainly compounded by media information. Aircraft crashes are instantly publicized all over the world due to their "uniqueness," many victims, and often a sensational course of events. Paradoxically, it is on the roads that most people die.
Instead of being afraid to get on a plane, we should probably start being scared to drive. Fears of flying are entirely unfounded, the number of air accidents is falling from year to year, and there is no indication that this trend will reverse.