Fear of Flying – Nervous Flier Tips
Fear of Flying – Tips for the Nervous Flier
People love a little fear! Roller coasters, Halloween decorations, and scary movies thrill and excite so many – especially near Halloween!
But let’s talk about a real scary thing….fear of flying. Sometimes people say they ‘hate’ to fly while others say they are terrified and just won’t get on a plane at all. You are NOT alone. Lots of people have varying degrees of a fear of flying. How many? About 120 MILLION people – 40% of the American population. It even has a name – three names actually.
Aviophobia or Aviatophobia or Pteromerhanophobia
No amount of reassurance that flying is safer than every form of transportation except elevators and escalators helps. Who calls an escalator a form of transportation, anyway? This can be a huge problem if you can’t fly for work or worse….can’t fly for family vacations!!
I’m blessed to not be a nervous flier, but I hear about it all the time and really believe the fear can interfere with a great trip. The fear is real.
What can you do about your fear of flying?
Fear of flying – Distraction
Some find distractions to help calm their fears. Try using a book, game or movie. A simple game like mahjong or solitaire can take just enough thought to distract. Many flights now have in flight moves, music, and even wifi to give you lots of options.
Fear of flying – Logic
Try thinking of the statistics. Flying is not as dangerous as many things we do every single day.
Your chances of dying:
In an airplane accident – 1 in 20,000
In an auto accident – 1 in 100
From heart disease – 1 in 5
Logically we should all be worried abut our cardio vascular health instead of flying.
Fear of flying – Meditation
Meditation is a relaxation technique – a method of breathing. You can do that, right? You are good at breathing! Besides, what could it hurt to try? Download a meditation ap. Then plug in…..listen and breathe. There are lots of aps to choose from. Download a few before you leave.
Fear of flying – Alcohol
Some people drink to get through a flight. I’m not talking about passing out drinking, but a cocktail can soothe the nerves. If it gets you through a flight easier, why not? I’m pretty sure that is why bars are such a common sight in airport terminals.
Fear of flying – Music and happy thoughts
Mentally try to go to a happy place. Think happy thoughts. Use earphones and music to help. Where are you going? What will you see? How will you feel? Review your wedding..your graduation…the birth of your baby ..whatever is wonderful. Download your favorites and have them ready!
Fear of flying – Over the counter meds
How about over the counter meds to help you sleep? Tylenol PM perhaps? I have terrible allergies and always keep benadryl on hand. That stuff knocks me out and might help you, too.
Fear of flying – See your dr
When all else fails, see your dr. There are meds that can help with the once in a blue moon nerves from flying. If you need to take a pill for a once a year family vacation – what is the harm in that? Talk to your dr and get some advice.
Fear of flying – Schedule your time
Plan out the plane ride. Say it is 4 hours. Tell yourself that you will read/play a game for a certain amount of time. Then, you’ll get up and visit the bathroom. Then, you’ll have a drink. Then, you’ll watch a movie. Then, you’ll take something that makes you sleepy (over the counter or from your dr) and try to nap. Breaking the plane right into small parts can help make the trip more manageable.
Fear of flying – Define your fear
What really is the fear? Is it rocketing through the air in a metal tube? Fear of closed spaces? Fear of germs from so many people in a small space? Sometimes knowing the source of the fear can help. You can reason with yourself with self talk. Tell yourself “People all over the world do this every day and I can, too.”
Also, use a rubber band to stop those negative thoughts. Put it around your wrist like a bracelet and snap yourself whenever you have negative thoughts. Try to push those negative thoughts out of your head and choose something positive to replace that negative thought. It takes practice but can really help.
Fear of flying – Endure
A very wise (and handsome) man once told me, “This is a one way street.” and on a plane you can tell yourself, “I just got through the first hour/min and I don’t have to do that part again.” This one helps me no matter the struggle. Thanks, hubby!
My mother had a similar mantra, “You can fight a bear for that long!” If your fear is mild, you might be able to just watch the clock to get through it.
Fear of flying – Take a class
There are classes you can take to help with your fear of flying. Click here for one called Soar. These are especially helpful for flyers that have to fly often on business.
Do you have other ideas? Please share in the comment section below! I’d love to hear from you.
You CAN have a wonderful trip WITH the kids. The Educational Tourist can help you make plans!
Prepare for a flight to make the best of it! These related posts give you more information!
Happy and relaxing travels,
Natalie, The Educational Tourist