A Few Tactical Approaches to Overcoming Fear of Flying

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Fear of flying is something that is still incredibly common. There are many reasons, of course, that we can experience this, whether it’s a logical spillover from fear of heights or the fact that someone has never been flying before, but there are a number of excellent approaches to overcoming fear of flying, which include the following: 

Educate and Inform Yourself

One of the big reasons we can experience fear about anything is, very simply, because we know nothing about it. There’s a lot that we can learn about flying from the mechanics of the planes themselves, safety features of the airplanes, the training of the pilots and the crew, and even the construction of the airport from the commercial concrete to the departure gates can all help us to understand the finite components of the bigger picture. Sometimes when we are fearful of the unknown, a little bit of information can go a long way. 

Visualization and Positive Self-Talk

These are two excellent tools that can help prepare the mind and the body for the experience. Positive self-talk and affirmations can replace negative thoughts that can work wonders to boost our confidence and our anxiety. Visualization is another approach that can help you to prepare yourself for the experience. We must remember that our brains, on a subconscious level, will just reflect what we put into it, so if we continue to flood it with negative statements, this is why we feel negative. Therefore, if you know you’ve got a flight coming up, taking the time to develop certain affirmations and visualize calmness in your mind and body during a flight can help a lot. 

Seeking Professional Help

Sometimes we need to understand where the anxiety actually stems from. Working with a therapist who specializes in anxiety disorders and phobias can provide personalized support. Something like hypnosis is an excellent tool that, over time, can help desensitize your mind and body to the stresses associated with flying. Likewise, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) helps individuals to identify and change negative thought patterns and beliefs that contribute to their fear. We can challenge irrational thoughts through techniques like cognitive restructuring or we can gradually expose ourselves to flying-related situations, which is also a very common component of therapy. We can start with less anxiety-provoking activities, for example, looking at pictures of planes and then working up to going to the airport and finally taking a flight. Desensitization responses can be fantastic to help us during any stressful situation.

Relaxation Techniques

Sometimes we can’t shake that oppressive feeling, which can be a very physical sensation of anxiety. Relaxation techniques can work wonders because of a multitude of approaches like progressive muscle relaxation and deep breathing that can help to manage anxiety symptoms during flights, as well as in life. 


The key to helping yourself overcome a fear of anything, not least a fear of flying, is to use a combination of these approaches that can help you gradually overcome it. Many people rely on quick fixes or just avoiding the situation. Whenever we experience a challenge in life, we can certainly overcome it, as long as we have the right techniques.

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