Mind Healing – Flying Without Fear
Understanding Your Fears of Flying
If flying makes you fearful, you are not alone.
Even those who fly frequently, on business or for pleasure, often feel highly anxious as they buckle their seat belts and listen to the engines starting up.
A fear of flying means experiencing powerful and persistent anxiety, not only when in the air but often at the mere prospect of doing so.
As a result, people with this fear will avoid flying whenever possible or only feel able to take to the air if they first sedate themselves. Either with a medically prescribed tranquilliser or with self prescribed alcohol.
In six out of ten cases, a fear of flying is liked to other fears, such as claustrophobia (being in a confined space): social or agoraphobia (fear of the presence of other people) or emetophobia (a fear of seeing people being sick).
Certain aspects of the flight, such as taking off, landing, bad weather, and turbulent are the most likely triggers for increased anxiety. It is estimated that up to 40% of people suffered from this problem to a greater or lesser extent.
If you are among them, you need no longer allow a fear of flying prevent you from flying or spoiling your enjoyment of the flight next time you do so. There are simple, practical steps you can take not merely to fly without fear but to enjoy every moment of your journey, from the moment you start planning the trip to the moment you touch down at your destination.
How fearful of flying are you?
Find out how fearful flying makes you by watching this short video of a take off from Gatwick.
As you do so imagine, as vividly as possible, being on that aircraft. In your mind’s eye picture yourself sitting by the window and looking out as the jet taxis onto the runway and speeds down it before lifting into the sky. Feel the sensations as the plane judders slightly during take off. Listen to the increasing road of the engines as they build to full thrust. Observe the landscape spreading below you as the jet lifts off. Notice as the ground disappears beneath the clouds before you emerge into the blue sky high above them. Observe if there are physical changes in your body. Does your mouth start to dry? Does your heart start to race? Do your palms begin to sweat? Is your mind filled with fearful thoughts about what could happen if anything goes wrong?
After watching the video, answer the following questions. If you felt unable to watch because you knew it would make you too anxious go directly to Question 5
1] While watching the video I:
(a) Had to stop before the end due to rising anxiety.
(b) Experienced great anxiety but watched the entire video.
(c) Felt slightly anxious throughout.
(d) Remained completely calm and relaxed.
2] While watching, I felt my anxiety rising:
(a) Within the first minute.
(b) After 1 or 2 minutes.
(c) Towards the end.
(d) At no time.
3] I experience some or all of the following – heart beating faster, mouth going dry, palms starting to sweat:
(a) From the start.
(b) As the aircraft taxied.
(c) When the plane took off.
(d) At no time.
4] Watching the video brought to mind:
(a) News stories about aircraft crashing.
(b) A scary flight I once had.
(c) Happy memories of holidays in the sun.
(d) No memories relating to previous flights.
5) When I think about having to take a flight I feel?
(a) Sick with dread.
(b) Mindful of the possible dangers.
(c) Mildly apprehensive at the prospect.
(d) A sense of pleasurable anticipation.
How to Score
Bear in mind a flight in the imagination, even when assisted by the sights and sounds of a video, will never generate the same levels of anxiety as an actual flight. Nevertheless, clinical experience suggests that a high level of anxiety when experiencing any potentially anxiety-arousing activity in the imagination suggests a similar response will arise in real life.
If you were unable to watch the video, add 12 points to your score from Q5.
There are 3 points for each (a); 2 for each (b); 1 for each (c) and 0 for each (d) response.
What Your Score Reveals.
0 – 3: You are unlikely to experience any great anxiety over flying.
4 – 7: You are mildly apprehensive about making a flight.
8 – 11: Fear is likely to spoil your enjoyment of any flight.
12 +: You have a fear of flying so intense it may stop you from ever doing so.
Any score above 8 suggests you might derive great benefit from my Fly Without Fear self-help programme.
There are practical, non-scary, steps that will help remain calm while flying whether on business or pleasure. In my audio training programme Fly Without Fear I take you through every stage of a flight from arriving at the airport, through the take off and journey to the moment you land at your destination. You will be guided, in the safety and comfort of your own home to experience sensations not of distress or anxiety but relaxation and enjoyment.
Fly Without Fear
My ten step programme will help you understand your fears and offer practical, easy to implement, procedures for controlling them before, during and after a flight.
In Fly Without Fear I take you, in your imagination, through every stage of a flight from arriving at the airport, the take off and encountering turbulence, to the moment you land at your destination. Actors and sound effects help make your flight as realistic as possible.
In the safety and comfort of your own home, you will learn to experience sensations not of distress or anxiety while flying but of relaxed enjoyment.
“This is a journey in your imagination, with real life sounds from the airport and plane, and the reassuring voice of Dr Lewis as your companion…he explains why visualisation and mental and physical relaxation significantly reduce anxiety during a flight, especially through the control that this restores to your mind. The bonus section on rapid relaxation and visualisation would certainly be worth taking with you.” Tom Spence.
In the Fly Without Fear audio training programme download, I guide you through the ten steps of preparing for and taking a flight whether for business of pleasure. Gradually and easily you will master the skills needed to remain calm and confident from the moment you decide to fly to the time the aircraft lands at your destination.
In this audio training programme, I guide you…
Step One: Understanding Your Fear of Flying.
Step Two: Mastering the Relaxing Breath.
Step Three: Preparing for Your Flight.
Step Four: Arriving at the Airport.
Step Five: Taking Your Seat in the Aircraft.
Step Six: Listening to the Safety Announcements.
Step Seven: The Take Off.
Step Eight: Flying High.
Step Nine: Coping with Turbulence.
Step Ten: The Landing
Bonus Section: Rapid Relaxation & Visualisation.