Get to the airport in good time
To take some of the stress out of the equation, make sure you arrive at the airport earlier than you might otherwise, ideally a couple of hours before your flight is scheduled.
Arriving late and being stressed that you will possibly miss your flight will only add to the anxiety, and very likely make you feel more apprehensive. This can substantially worsen your fear of flying, as you’ll find yourself in a heightened state of tension.
Being at the airport early will make you feel more comfortable with the different things going on, the unfamiliar sights, and sounds connected with flying.
Let the flight attendants know about your situation
Letting the flight attendants know that you have a fear of flying will enable them to be able to check in on you during the flight. As trained, professional staff, your comfort and safety are in the forefront of their mind. They will look out for you and make sure that you are OK during the flight. Should you begin to panic, they will know how to help you as needed.
It is advisable to avoid coffee and other caffeinated beverages as these will cause you to become more energized than normal. Caffeine consumption will likely result in your body being over-stimulated and you feeling more nervous and jittery as a result. This is not what you need if you want to have a peaceful journey in the air.
To avoid becoming dehydrated during your flight, keep your water intake up. You may also find that electrolytes help in keeping hydrated; I’ll let you in on a secret, that is what I do to avoid heavy jetlag on long flights.
Take slow, deep breaths
When you experience anxiety during a flight, slow your thinking down as much as possible, take slow and deep breaths to help calm yourself. Slowly inhale, counting to ten, for a few seconds hold that breath in, and then slowly exhale to the count of ten.
With this you don’t want to force the breath out, just let it come out on its own. This will help you to prevent hyperventilating and will help you feel more relaxed. While on the note about hyperventilating; the old trick of breathing into a paper bag is not a good thing to do. You may breathe in more carbon dioxide than is healthy and find you don’t feel so good. Done for too long, this can also result in some serious medical issues.
Sign up for a course to conquer a fear of flying
You may believe that your fear is so intense that you need help from a professional. This is a specialist field, and can be quite expensive. If you do choose to enroll in a course to conquer a fear of flying, look for one that can provide believable testimonials that you can connect with.
The major carriers, such as Singapore Airlines and Virgin Airlines, can provide these courses, but they do come at a fee. Qantas also runs a Fearless Flyer course, where the course culminates in an activity where you get to take a flight in one of their aircraft. The course can be a bit on the expensive side, but it is well and truly worth it when you consider the results you can get.
If you don’t take steps to conquer a fear of flying, this can get in the way of you enjoying the good life, but it doesn’t need to stay that way forever. You have the ability to take the required steps to overcome your fear and go see the world!