Tips for Air Travel Anxiety


Fantastic! You’ve just booked your flight, you managed to nail down the dates, get the best deal, choose your seats Just one tiny problem…..you hate flying! So I’ve come up with some tips today to keep your nerves at a manageable level for your next flight So tip number 1 is way before your flight start a wellness routine What do I mean by that? Well all those things you know you should be doing to keep yourself in tip top condition Things like eating regular, healthy meals having a stillness part of your day, like a meditation routine Why am I recommending a wellness routine? Well, anticipatory anxiety is often worse than when we’re actually doing the event itself. So what I mean by that is, you anticipating your flight is much scarier than when you’re actually on the flight So if you can do you best to keep your stress levels down and your fitness levels up you’re going to help yourself with that anticipatory anxiety so that it doesn’t get out of control for you. Tip number 2 is pack a carry-on that helps you. I love this, I’ve got a couple of these weekender bags by Vera Bradley and I love them because they’re big but they’re flexible So I can stuff them under the seat in front of me and I don’t have to put it in the overhead locker. And I have it full of things that are going to keep me occupied like books, maybe a puzzle book, I normally keep a pen and notepad, my headphones are a definite, I don’t go anywhere without my headphones I keep sweets or snacks in there, may be a mint Tip number 3 is deal with your body’s reaction to stress And the number one way you can be in control is to become aware of your breath Notice the natural movement and the natural rhythm of your breath Notice if it’s become shallower, which is what often happens when we become stressed Bring awareness to the natural movement of your breath and if you can elongate the out breath, really pushing down so you squeeze out all the air in your breath. And then that will help regulate the in breath. When you regulate your breathing, your body will tell your brain that you are feeling calm and relaxed Tip number 4 is to remind yourself of the positive reasons why you are traveling. Now obviously this is much easier if you are traveling because you’re going on vacation If you are doing something that ‘s not pleasant, say for example, you’re going to a family member’s funeral and you have to take a flight for it. It’s hard to find the positive in these moments but maybe you can be thankful of the fact you’re actually able to go and celebrate this person’s life and it’s a reminder of how much they meant to you. Number 5 Find stillness in your own way. This could be meditation, prayer or mindfulness. A particular meditation I like to do while I’m on the plane is sa ta na ma And I use my fingers for each segment of the mantra. So, it’s sa ta na ma. Sa ta na ma, And the reason I like this is because it manages to focus my mind on the words, but also because I’m actually pressing the pads of each finger with my thumb it’s giving me some movement and it really helps to keep me focused and concentrated on what I’m doing. And I will just do that for a couple of minutes when I’m feeling a little bit agitated. Now mindfulness is about keeping yourself focused and aware of yourself and what’s going on around you And you can do this with simple things like attending to the noises that are going on around you maybe noticing the temperature of your body. Simple things that keep you grounded in the present moment. Number 6 is my final tip, and that is to sit in a powerful way. Now it is notoriously difficult to find a comfortable position on a flight especially if you’re around strangers on either side. That you don’t want to take up much room or touch them. So it’s easy to adopt that concave, inward, scrunched up position And that’s the worst thing you could do because you’re not helping yourself to breath. You’ve caving in your ribcage. But it’s also a posture of weakness, if any of you have seen Amy Cuddy’s work on Power Posing the best way you could sit is to have your legs both on the ground and take up a lot of space Now this isn’t easy when you’re on a flight But just be aware of your posture. Try and keep sitting with a straight back. Take up as much room as you possibly can without being rude to your sitting partners next to you. But also, when you take a break and go to the bathroom do the wonder woman pose, which is where you put your hands on your hips and stand with your legs apart looking straight, posture of your back nice and straight and Amy Cuddy suggests that you hold that for 2 minutes And it sends a signal to your brain that you’re in power, that you’re in control and that you’re not in any danger in any way. So keeping your posture straight will do wonders for feelings of security and keeping calm. So I really hope these tips are going to help you with your next flight. If you’re feeling fearful start taking some of these tips. You can start doing it as soon as you book that flight. And I wish you well on your travel adventures. Take care, bye.

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