Maybe you had to turn down a holiday or a promotion abroad because it required flying frequently? Fear of flying is very common indeed. I provide hypnosis for fear of flying at my London clinic to many people who go on to enjoy flying once again. For details of my London sessions click here.
Hypnosis for fear of flying explained
Hypnosis for fear of flying has very good success rates, with people able to take flights after just a few sessions of hypnosis for fear of flying. If you have ever suffered from a fear of flying, it is more common than you may realize. More than one in 10 people will suffer from this phobia at some point in their lives. The intensity will vary from person to person. For some, it can be quite easy to overcome. They just experience something that feels like having some butterflies in the stomach. For others, they can experience anxiety or panic attacks or feel a real sense of paralysis, unable to get on an airplane at all.
This can make life quite difficult, especially if you have friends or relatives who live abroad. Even if you are able to board a plane, you may find the journey difficult with a feeling of distress when there is turbulence, or you just have a feeling of unease during the flight.
It’s quite common for people to ask for medication from their doctor or to rely on alcohol during the flight to get through experiencing the symptoms of a phobia of flying. I do hope that with the help of hypnosis for fear of flying, you will soon be able to fly again. Flying without the need of medication or drinking a stiff drink to get through.
At first our work will be to make flying feel manageable again. Following this, you will gain tools to ensure you can feel more relaxed and feel calm when flying.
It’s always important to remember, of course, that in terms of methods of travel or transport, flying is still the safest way to travel, out of any form of travel.
What is the ‘fear’ that hypnosis for fear of flying helps?
Fear of flying is a phobia much like any other and therefore it can also be driven by a number of factors. Your fear of flying may be related to a fear of being in an enclosed space or a concern of not being in control. For some people a fear of flying may have resulted from being in an airplane when there was turbulence, or even from simply seeing crashes or disasters in movies. The imagination can be very powerful and a scary movie can create a phobia response for some people.
Fear of flying or aviophobia, aerophobia, involves an almost instinctual response to a fear of potential danger. Therefore hypnosis is a very powerful tool to reduce this phobia since it addresses the subconscious mind and the imagination, with an aim to redress and reduce the level of anxiety. Fear, of course, is quite natural to experience when danger is perceived. Indeed, it is said that all human beings are born with two phobias, namely falling over and loud noises. This means that a fear of flying is, in fact, something that has been learned or gained over time.
If we can identify the underlying causes or factors that resulted in you gaining a fear of flying, we can then work to safely reduce those factors. Hypnosis is very powerful for achieving that since it addresses your subconscious drives and imagination. It wouldn’t be realistic to expect you to immediately be skydiving without a parachute of course, but it is reasonable to expect that the anxiety you may feel even driving to an airport will be reduced. We will reduce your general anxiety levels and the specific fear of flying anxiety. The aim is that very soon you will feel comfortable to get on an airplane and, in fact, hopefully even enjoy the journey. Rather than feeling anxiety about the journey, you will focus on looking forward to reaching your destination, which might involve visiting friends, relatives, a business trip or a wonderful holiday.
A phobia is really an exaggerated or sometimes even irrational fear about what might happen in the future. For example, some people have phobias about being on a train, insects, dogs, crossing a bridge, or being at a height. And this can be even though they know rationally that they are very safe. However, unlike those types of phobias, flying is not something that we do on a regular basis, every week and so flying can become something that feels unique and special.
It also means there are fewer opportunities to face your fear. We simply don’t have frequent opportunities to get used to flying unless you fly for work on a regular basis. This means that occasional flying experiences can become quite big sources of fear or anxiety, especially if other concerns are combined together. That is why hypnosis for fear of flying is an effective treatment. In the safety of the consulting room, I guide your imagination to believe you are experiencing a flight. However, rather than feeling nervous, I give you tools so you more easily feel calm and safe.
Let me explain how a fear of flying can be created when there are other factors involved besides flying itself. I will tell you about a client who came for help to reduce his fear of flying.
Having booked a family holiday, he was very motivated to reduce his phobia. When we discussed his fear of flying in more depth, we discovered that the phobia was actually to do with a memory of a distressing journey.
A few years before, a relative had died abroad. It was a close relative and he was naturally very distressed about this bereavement. He had to take a flight to get to the funeral. On the airplane he was feeling very anxious, nervous and distressed about the death of his relative and sat thinking about this and the sad reality of traveling to attend the funeral. On the airplane he felt very anxious and the whole flight felt distressing and unpleasant. It was this event which has sowed the seeds of his future flying phobia.
Since his mind now connected this distress together with being on a plane, he then found, in later years, that he would have anxiety on airplanes. He was reliving a echo of that anxiety he had felt on the journey to attend his relative’s funeral.
If you think about it, in a sense, his anxiety had nothing directly to do with the airplane itself. It was simply that a previous anxiety provoking experience in this case, bereavement, had become connected and associated with flying on an airplane. This meant that airplanes had somehow now become symbolic of that previous distressing time of anxiety and loss. In fact just by becoming aware and noticing this fact meant the anxiety was reduced. By using hypnosis for fear of flying techniques and tools, he was able to let go of that previous anxiety.
He also found that there was some bereavement work to be done. And when that was completed, he felt more closure and calmness about the past traumatic events. Getting on an airplane was much easier now. It no longer represented and symbolized that previously distressing incident.
You can see from this example that sometimes a phobia of flying isn’t strictly always directly to do with flying per say. This can be true of other phobias too. Once we identify the underlying causes, we can help you feel calm and more relaxed.
There are many thoughts and irrational fears around flying. Some people might have a concern that the airplane may crash or that there will be engine trouble. Unfortunately, we often only hear bad news. When we listen to the radio, we don’t hear about the literally thousands of successful and incident free flights that happen every day. We only hear of the big and exceptional incidents and get scared because of them. Scary things stick out in our minds and we exaggerate the risks and dangers. But, as mentioned already, flying is really the safest form of travel. We think it’s more dangerous than it really is since our subconscious can exaggerate and make something that is really quite harmless more fearful. When we’re looking out for crashes on the news, that’s exactly what we notice more often. We don’t remember or notice the thousands of successful journeys which happen every day and pass without incident.
It’s important to remember that pilots are some of the most highly trained professionals in the world. Often pilots will come from a military background, which means they have many years of service and experience in pressurized flying situations. Commercial pilots are trained to very high levels of expertise and they never fly alone, there’s always a co-pilot. Planes today are very sophisticated, with many safety features and of course the training is very rigorous for pilots. So, in fact, your pilot’s high level of expertise means that you’re in very good and safe hands.
What happens during a hypnosis for fear of flying session?
During your session, we will discuss, in detail, your phobia. Of course, you will be in the safety of the consulting room. So even if you feel a little anxious discussing this, you will be safe in the knowledge that you are on the ground and safe. We will discuss what could be the underlying reasons for your phobia. The second half of the session is normally a hypnosis relaxation and visualization. This will help you become less concerned and more relaxed about flying. It may involve running through memories to do with flying or it may be simply helping you identify and let go of things that have been on your mind that may help create your fear of flying phobia. There may be small home assignments to be carried out between sessions. For example, a home assignment might be to simply drive to the airport and coming home again, if that journey was a source of stress for you.
If you feel that hypnosis for fear of flying is something that will help you, please get in touch and book your initial consultation. During you initial consultation, we will discuss how hypnosis for fear of flying will help you fly again. Soon you will feel more comfortable to board a plane and enjoy again holidays, business trips and visiting friends and family abroad.