Every month, anxiety forums receive numerous posts from individuals convinced that getting on a plane will end in disaster.
However, this belief that flying is hazardous makes no logical sense; facts and statistics prove otherwise.
1. It’s irrational
Fear of flying is an increasingly prevalent phobia that ranges from mild discomfort to full-on panic attacks or an outright refusal to fly altogether. For those living with this anxiety disorder, managing their condition can be overwhelming; furthermore, business trips or holiday experiences could become impossible due to missing flights altogether.
Fearing flying is irrational because it ignores all of the facts and statistics that show it to be safe. Indeed, chances of plane crashes are extremely remote while chances of delays due to mechanical issues also tend to be quite minimal.
Airlines staff are trained to offer reassurances and check with passengers during delays, often using language that’s designed to numb anxiety and reduce stress levels. It’s essential for new flyers or those afraid of flying to recognize any signs of anxiety so the flight crew can spot and address these concerns more effectively.
Add something fun and enjoyable to the air travel experience by asking a pilot or flight attendants to read from the safety manual, provided with every aircraft. Or listen to news programs or discuss with friends your fears regarding flying.
Last, you should try to persuade yourself that flying is an extremely safe activity. Tell yourself the chances of an airplane crashing are very slim while also telling yourself there is minimal chance that anyone on board could become injured or killed during flight.
Remind yourself that when thinking about flying, any physical sensations or feelings you experience are an indicator that your body is reacting instinctively and sensing danger – this response is known as the Flight or Fight Reflex and should come as no surprise to anyone.
Once you realize your fear of flying is irrational, overcoming it becomes much simpler. One effective strategy to help combat your anxiety about flying is visualising what life would be like when you no longer experience anxiety-inducing flights or panicked journeys.
2. It’s not dangerous
If you suffer from a fear of flying, don’t feel guilty; it is natural to experience anxiety when about to board an aircraft – however it is crucial that these emotions be seen as completely irrational and not rationalized by negative self-talk.
Fearing a plane crash is also unreasonable when statistics demonstrate the greater risks presented by car accidents versus airplanes, both of which are designed with safety in mind. Furthermore, airplanes have proven their durability over many decades of flight.
Learn as much as you can about flying and its safety systems to reduce anxiety and rationalize any unreasonable fears you might be harboring about flying, which will give you confidence to take that next step toward being able to fly without feeling scared or nervous.
One effective strategy for combatting your fears of flying is creating a supportive network in both your personal and professional life. Affirmative relationships can ease much of the stress caused by this fearful experience.
Talking with someone can also help alleviate your fears, as can consulting a therapist or mental health provider. A professional can be immensely effective at helping overcome fear of flying; by helping identify where the source of anxiety lies and what steps can be taken to overcome it.
Consider that your irrational fears of flying may be your body’s reaction to perceived threats. Fearful emotions activate our fight-or-flight responses, raising blood pressure and heart rate as your brain attempts to send warning signals of impending danger.
Your body releases adrenaline when facing danger, making you shaky and dizzy – this feeling may have even influenced how you felt as a child; today these sensations may be associated with flying fears.
Avoidance of flying can only exacerbate your fears; any attempts at controlling, containment, or avoidance will only make things worse and may increase anxiety levels even further. Do not attempt to manage them by trying to control, contain or ignore your anxiety about flying by trying to ignore, contain, or contain it by any means possible; doing this may increase tension and anxiety levels even more than usual.
3. It’s not a big deal
Fear of flying can be likened to jumping at the popping of a balloon: harmless yet still fear-inducing.
Fear of flying is often connected with other anxieties, such as enclosed spaces. Some may fear heights or loss of control; others might worry about losing their jobs, family, or personal safety.
Be proactive and educate yourself on the risks of flying by taking time to educate yourself on its safety. Many airlines provide detailed statistics regarding risks of flight.
Read up on aviation and speak to pilots to gain more knowledge of aircrafts’ safety mechanisms. They are highly-skilled professionals who regularly undergo rigorous tests to make sure that passengers remain secure during flights.
Additionally, airline staff can be invaluable when it comes to checking on your wellbeing during a flight. Spending some time speaking with them could make all the difference if you’re dealing with anxiety or fear of flying.
At its core, what matters is finding what works for you to finally overcome your fear of flying and end your anxiety once and for all. While this might feel self-centered at first, focusing on yourself rather than anyone else increases the odds that it’s done successfully. Consider why and what benefits there will be from doing so.
4. It’s a great way to travel
Though airplanes have long been proven safe forms of transportation and plane crashes are virtually nonexistent, some individuals still fear flying despite its unfounded and unreasonable fear. Such reactions shouldn’t interfere with our journeys or change how we travel.
If flying is something that makes you uneasy, try to focus on what positive things will come of it once it’s all over. Use your time in the air to read a book, play games with others or watch movies; or simply relax and appreciate where you are.
Many people fear flying because they feel powerless over what’s happening up there; someone else appears to be controlling everything from above and there is no chance of them stopping someone else’s driving in flight, leading them to worry that an airplane crash may occur.
If you are truly concerned about their fear of flying, seeking professional assistance such as counseling is advised. Therapists or counselors can help identify the source of the anxiety while offering strategies to overcome it.
If your fear of flying is getting the better of you, seeing a physician may help. There are various anxiety medications available which may provide some relief; it is important to keep in mind that some can be addictive so any dosage should only be taken under medical guidance. Furthermore, medications exist which can assist with sleep disorders and nausea as well.