How to stop being afraid to fly
So, I suggest to talk about aerophobia.
To many, aerophobia restricts life, hinders the dynamics of movement, does not allow enjoying the benefits and achievements of mankind. And although statistics say that airplanes are the safest mode of transport compared to cars and trains, this does not reassure aerophobes. Let's figure out why?
Causes of aerophobia
- The main reason for aerophobia is the fear of being in a desperate situation. “The cabin in which you fly is locked, the doors are locked, you don’t know how to fly a plane, you don’t have a control panel, you don’t know what to do if the plane starts to fall” - such thoughts occur to those who are afraid to fly . And therefore, on a psychological level, a trip on the ground seems safer: "Well, at least I will not fall from a great height, I will jump out somehow." Although the problems with rail and motor transport accidents are not less.
- According to aviation psychologist Alexei Gervash, half of people suffering from aerophobia are not afraid of airplanes as such.People are afraid of their bodies, namely, their reactions to an unusual situation, they are afraid of losing control over their behavior, they are afraid of panic attacks, they are afraid of headaches. And for many, the basis of aerophobia is generally the fear of confined space.
- Suggestion is also one of the most common causes of aerophobia. Many people before their first flight especially do not even delve into the news related to the crash. This topic seems so far away. But after the first, even quiet flight, they begin to be afraid. Do not miss a single program, participate in conversations and forums, discussing fears. Learn the weather statistics. And on subsequent flights watch for other aerophobes that are nearby. They empathize, live their fear, pass it through themselves: “There, my neighbor shakes, probably knows something ...” And only then this fear acts as a conditioned reflex.
Is the aerophobia of therapy amenable?
Yes. Aerophobia, like any other fear, goes away if we go with it to confrontation. And anyone can learn to control the physiology of fear and stop panic. If, however, from fear simply "running around", it will increase and grow according to the principle of a snowball, touching the beginnings of other fears.
How to drive away fear?
We will show you several methods of dealing with aerophobia.And you choose the most convenient for you.
- Literature.If you have a flight you are afraid of, study the literature on the history of aeronautics. Try to compare the dubious design of the first aircraft and the power of modern airliners, which are equipped with additional security systems.
- Man from the side.Imagine yourself a man from the outside, looking at yourself afraid. How do you look? Not very presentable, eh? Shaking like an aspen leaf, blinking more often than usual, having a bluish complexion, sweating? Pity yourself, smile to yourself and mentally pat yourself on the head: “Everything will be fine!”
- Film about yourself.Imagine yourself in a movie theater. The screen shows a movie about you. More precisely, about your fear. You clearly see your fear in one or several images or you see yourself - shaking, fading. Sit a bit in the front row, then sit down in the middle of the room. Then change to the most rear seats. You are not so interested in this film, it bored you, especially since this film is not about you at all. Get up from your seat and exit the hall. You said goodbye to fear.
Tasks and amenities.Brighten up the waiting time at the airport with something pleasant. Take a walk around the shops, read a book that you have long wanted to read (do not read at home, leave for the airport to have intrigue and motivation), listen to your favorite music. In short, distract yourself to close and pleasant trivia.
Takeoff and flight
- Abstraction.Before take-off do not follow the hands of the clock. The pilot already knows when to take off. Carefully read the safety instructions on the plane. Take a break from an interesting book that you started reading at the airport, play logical computer games. If you are traveling with a fellow traveler, small board games for traveling are well suited.
- Relaxation.Relieve anxiety during takeoff, you can use relaxation. Sit comfortably, unbutton the top buttons of the clothes, stretch your legs and focus your attention on soothing breathing - inhale briefly, exhale slowly. Think about the pleasant things that await you: about the upcoming holiday at the sea, the warm sun, delicious food or, if you fly home, about your home, relatives and relatives who are waiting for you.If it is difficult to think about the future, stir up pleasant memories, for example, how you had a great rest in camp, as a child, or went on the most successful fishing in your life.
- Sneaky part.Analyze where your fear is? Maybe he is hiding in the spine, in the stomach, legs or throat? Imagine that you breathe through this part, passing a uniform flow of inhaled air through it. Once, second, third. Feel how this part relaxes, the muscles surrounding it relax, you feel warm and fear recedes.
- Chatting with a companion. Unobtrusively talk with fellow travelers. On any neutral topic. Rest, weather, hobbies, work ... I usually discuss with the neighbors the upcoming or subsequent vacation, talk about the places that I liked, ask for advice. If the neighbor himself enters into a conversation with you, support the conversation. Perhaps he himself suffers from aerophobia.
- Contact with physical sensations. There is a concept in psychology - "I am here and now." We rarely try to live in the present moment, all worrying about the future. To return us to the present state helps us to contact with physical sensations.Feel how comfortable / uncomfortable you are in an armchair, how you hold a book in your hands, how you are sorting out sweets in your pocket, and how it smells like pastries that are carried by stewards. And most importantly, feel: right now nothing threatens you, right now everything is going according to plan. You are here and now.
We asked a few people to talk about their personal experiences in dealing with the fear of flying.
“I always take work with me on the plane. Even if I am on vacation, and even if I have a night flight. I still can not sleep. And I try to take the topic more difficult, especially if the flight is long. It helps me cope with anxiety. All with books, and I'm flying with a notebook. People sometimes ask: “What are you writing?” Such attention is also pleasant. ”
“I read that there is no point in controlling the work of the pilot. Often he flew and over time studied the sequence of sounds in the cabin. What follows what. If, as it seemed to me, something was wrong, he called the flight attendants and clarified whether everything is in order? This, of course, relieved the tension.
Now I try to get distracted by the world around me. Here's a baby chews a bun, chomping. Here are the neighbors looking at the map.And that bored grandfather near the porthole probably remembers his youth. ”
“For many years I was very hard on the flights: my ears were very deep and my head hurt, the first flights I just sat and howled, and the flight attendants ran around, not knowing what to do. Even this fear of flying ... Over time, the body has learned to fall asleep - somehow everything turns off by itself, in order to more easily endure pain, a defensive reaction. I just turn off with the first signs of pain. Wake up on landing. Once we flew from Istanbul, there was a strong migraine; We went into the plane with my husband, fastened my seat belts and chopped off. A man sat next to him, shaking straight with fear, looked at us with horror, and when the landing was announced and we woke up, he sat there, never taking his eyes off us. ”
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