I’m scared of flying. It’s something I don’t talk about publicly and not many people know about me. Perhaps more so because of my job and love of travel.
I’ve always felt really embarrassed about it, but found it quite astonishing to find out that 1 in 4 of us suffer from it.
I’ve had anxiety around flying since I was about 17, when I had my first panic attack on a flight. I’m “lucky” in that it has never truly stopped me from getting on an actual flight (nearly though!) – but it does cause me to start stressing out about 2-3 days before we fly, and I’m generally not very nice to be around. Imagine going away for a week, and spending half that time worrying about the flight home. That’s me.
I have always tried to hide it from my kids, by planning carefully where I sit, medicating with wine and Valium on a flight (definitely not advised), watching the air stewards every single move and gripping my wife’s hand.
Not travelling much during COVID actually seemed to make my anxiety worse and it was finally time to do something about it.
So I paid for a fearless flyer course with easyJet.
This comprised of an online course to follow at home at my leisure, covering technical aspects, techniques and strategies for coping, a meet the team on zoom and an experience flight. Today was the experience flight.
I honestly have to say, since watching the online course this week, I can definitely feel a shift in my feelings towards flying. I slept well last night which would NEVER have happened. I was also far less stressed during take off and landing and the little bit of turbulence we experienced, especially considering I was on my own.
If you’re feeling anxious in any way about flying, I would be very happy to talk to you in more detail about the course and how it could help you too. Don’t let it hold you back from having the most wonderful holidays.
And if you would like to book an LGBTQ+ friendly holiday with someone who is sympathetic and sensitive towards your anxiety and who can perhaps offer alternatives – Destination Rainbow would love to help.