How To Survive a Flight if You Hate Flying

Day 82/365: Tips&tricks that I use to overcome my fear of taking it up to the beautiful skies

It’s not that people are not enjoying flying, it’s just that, no matter how many times you did it before, you still get the usual bouts of anxiety before boarding the plane. And who can blame us, when the reality is, we’re about to board a metal tube with seats, two very thin wings and two motors, and we’re about to ascend to over 10 kilometres over our heads in about 10 minutes?

Flying, although perfectly explainable scientifically, simply doesn’t make sense to our tiny minds. It’s irrational, which of course brings up many sorts of irrational (but also some rational) fears.

“What if the engine fails?” “What if the pilot misses the coordinates and lands us into a mountain?” or “What if I get sick on the plane and have nowhere to go?” These are just a few of the questions that most of us hear inside of our heads before flying, and if you’re doing it for the first time, there’s a lot more from where those first came from.

The truth is, after flying for two dozens times, I still get anxious before a flight. The trick is to simply don’t fight the butterflies in your stomach. I know, it sounds easier said than done, but I discovered that by following a set of 5 rules, before and into the flight, I can get from point A to point B mainly without too many troubles. Here’s what I do:

1. Have a relaxed morning before the flight

This is key for me. I wake up, I have a light breakfast, and then I usually do little to nothing before my flight. If the flight is in the afternoon, I have a small lunch and then continue to watch some TV, or read a book or anything else. I don’t do work, I don’t go to the groceries store, I simply relax as much as I can.

2. Music will set you free

The best way to keep calm and enjoy your flight is achievable by having the best music on your phone and a set of nice headphones. By keeping your mind occupied with music, which is literally blasting in your ears, you block out any of the voices in your head that are telling you to stop and go home.

I love to listen to soundtracks from my favourite movies, for example, Hans Zimmer songs from “Pirates of the Caribbean”, “Angels and Demons” and so on, but also to musical pieces from “Aladdin” or “Lion King”.

3. Wear extremely comfortable clothes

While you should never get on a plane without a small blanket or a jacket in your carry-on bag, as it gets chilly sometimes up there, you need to be as comfortable as possible while on the flight. Avoid jeans or any other types of legwear that is uncomfortable or might make you sweat. Wear a T-shirt and a thin hoodie and also a light pair of sneakers, and you’re set!

4. Talk to someone

This is more of a therapeutic advice, but it does apply to flying. Especially if you’re flying alone, try and make a new friend by talking to the person sitting next to you. Ask him or her about their day, why is he or she going where they’re going, and so on. By making small talk, you keep your mind occupied and time will just fly by.

5. Remember that flying is the safest

Flying is the safest mode of transportation today. You have a 1 in 5000 chances of dying on the ride to the airport, and a 1 in 10000000 chances of dying on the flight. Big difference, right?

Basically, if you’re done with taking off, which is the most important part of flying, you are 99,9999991% going to make it out alive. Sure, there’s that 0,0000009% chance that something could go wrong during landing, but the chances are practically zero. So sit back, relax and enjoy the flight!

P.S.: Remember to breathe, and you’ll be fine. Seriously, just breathe!

Thank you for your time!

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My name is Gabriel Iosa, I’m a 25 years old travel enthusiast, food lover, Psychology student, Full-time Freelancer, writer and Instagram fanatic. You can follow me @gabrieliosa, and if you liked this post, give it exactly 47 claps!

I’m on a mission to write 365 articles in 2018. This is definitely the biggest writing challenge of my life so far. If you’d like to be part of the journey, please follow me here on Medium.com for the daily posts!

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