THE ANXIETY FIX: 5 Top Tips for Nervous Flyers

I hate flying – yep, I know. Flying is often one of the only ways to travel, unless it is possible to get there by train, car or boat. Why would I love travel so much if I hate flying? I came to realise over the years that if I wanted to travel the world, it comes at a cost.

This summer I have lots of trips coming up and I am going to need to conquer my fears when it comes to flying. I do this through a variety of ways, including getting lots of sleep, doing yoga, using essential oils and packing my favourite Rescue Remedy. Here are my tips on how to prepare for a flight, if you’re a nervous flyer…

1. Rescue Remedy

Rescue Remedy is a brand I use everyday. It is a brand that’s become part of my daily life, whether it’s an anxious day like heading off flying, or a day at the office.

Rescue Remedy is the most famous of the Bach remedies, but in fact is not ‘a remedy’ at all. Instead it’s a blend of five different Bach Flower Remedies created to deal with emergencies and crises. It can be used to help you get through any stressful situations, from last-minute exam or interview nerves, to the aftermath of an accident or bad news. Rescue Remedy can help you relax, refocus and find calm.

2. Aromatherapy

Essential oils have been around for centuries, dating back as far as Biblical days when Jesus was anointed with frankincense and myrrh upon his birth. Anxiety is a tough battle to face day in and day out, which makes having a natural solution, such as an essential oil blend, important. Here are some of the best essentials oils for anxiety: Lavender, Rose, Ylang Ylang, Bergamot and Frankincense. Aromatherapy for anxiety is very popular because our sense of smell triggers powerful emotional responses and this can therefore improve your mood and improve your wellbeing.

3. Yoga + meditation

There is nothing better than switching off and doing a little bit of yoga in your spare time and you can do yoga whenever, even in the airport before a flight. On the way back from Crete in April I had a panic attack so I popped in headphones in and found a corner in the airport – sat on the floor and did ten mins of meditation and yoga poses. Yoga focuses on strength, flexibility and breathing to boost physical and mental wellbeing.

4. Breathing + grounding

Breathing and grounding means connecting to and being in balance with your body. Whether due to stress, anxiety or fatigue, you may have days where you feel as if you’ve lost touch with such feelings. Performing specific breathing exercises may help restore these feelings, help you relax and unite your body and mind. I do this before any flight, taking time out, and finding a moment of calm.

Find a place where you will not be disturbed and adopt either a seated or standing position, preferably with the soles of your feet on the ground. Set your intention for the practice, which is to become more grounded, and center yourself by relaxing, turning inward to your inner stillness, and placing your attention on your breath. Spend a few moments following your breath, inhaling through your nose, allowing your breath to expand your lungs, ribcage, and belly before exhaling through your nose. Even if your mind wanders, bring it back to the moment. Do this for around 10 minutes and you will find within four your anxiety has subsided and you will have a clearer head.

5. Therapy

Therapy is one of the best things I have ever done. We are such prudes in the UK, hiding our emotions, covering up our problems and always answering ‘I’m fine’ But isn’t it about time we started getting honest with each other. Life is shit sometimes, and sometimes we simply cannot manage this ourselves. We have to seek help! I have been seeing a therapist for over 8 months now, and it is the best thing I ever did.

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  • Emma Hart | Paper Planes and Caramel Waffles
    06/21/2017 at 21:48

    I used to get really nervous before flights and I’m still not quite there in terms of being excited about flying, but I’m definitely a lot better than I used to be. Like you, I just kind of reasoned that it was something I had to do if I wanted to see the world. For me, it definitely helped knowing what all the noises in the plane were and why the flight felt like it did at certain points in the journey. I don’t know if that makes much sense but knowing the clunking just after take off was the wheels being hoisted back up and not a bird flying into the side of the plane, helped a massive amount!

  • Chadwick
    07/03/2017 at 11:33

    I learnt that planes are designed to fly through turbulence. The air might bump you around a bit, but the plane can stay up just as easily as in clear air. The only reason that pilots avoid turbulence is because it’s uncomfortable for the passengers – NOT because it’s dangerous for the plane. I found it reassuring to know that the only ‘danger’ was that you might spill your tea.

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