Monday, March 9, 2009

Learning to fly

I'm preparing for a trip & am choosing to fly after not flying for almost 3 years. Here I am a few months out & I'm starting to feel the anticipatory fear already. You know, some images here & there of the plane going down in a fiery ball & me thinking - Oh no, if I knew this was going to happen I wouldn't have come - it's not worth my kids being raised without their parents! Yikes!

Luckily, it's not consuming, but it is somewhere in the background of my mental landscape & comes up when I start to think about the trip. Rationally, I know that it will alright once we're off the ground and the flight is underway. I am really looking forward to getting away with my handsome man. And, I know that air travel is much safer than driving a car. But anticipatory anxiety & an active imagination team up to get me into trouble sometimes. So, I'll be writing about this current anxiety & how I'm preparing. I'd love to hear your feedback about what works for you when it comes to anticipatory fears or flying.

Here's my prep plan so far:

*Write down affirmations
*Take time to listen to my fear of flying CD
*Plan as much as I can to be comfortable on the flight
*Talk to my doctor about an Rx to relax (I don't love taking meds, but flying is an exception!)
*Begin sitting with the anxiety - not spiraling into the what if thoughts, but sitting with & inviting the anxious symptoms that accompany the thoughts.
*Use my imagination to call up images of having fun & thoroughly enjoying the adventure.


Michele said...


From one anxiety girl to another here's a tip. Like you flying is not my favorite thing to do! Like most people with the big A our thoughts are more dangerous than anything else, so in light of this I try to change my thinking. Instead of being anxious about the trip, I try to remind myself that perhaps I'm not nervous, just excited for the adventure that awaits. Excitement and anxiety share a lot of the same feelings no??? Turn all that nervous energy into excited energy, maybe it will help!!

Anxiety Girl said...

Hey Michele,

So true - an attitude shift is important & I like that connection between - "are you nervous or just excited?" The physical sensations are so similar, we just interpret them differently. I'll work on seeing my anxiety as excitement & place that energy into gearing up for an awesome adventure. Great tip & thanks for your comment!