I love visiting new places. I enjoy my time at the airport before a flight and landing in a new city ready for adventures. However, one thing I’m not so crazy about is the flight. It’s during the run-up to the take off that my nerves really swing into action. Luckily, over the last couple of years I’ve found some simple ways to try and keep calm during the take off and throughout the rest of flight.
Here are 10 things I do to try and feel relaxed during take off:
- Arrive at the airport early: The suggested 2 hours should be enough but if I’m flying on my own or I’m in charge of a few friends then I’ll happily arrive at the airport with a little extra time to spare. My holiday starts at the airport and if you’re flying from a big airport there are plenty of shops to browse. I find this helps me to calm my nerves before the flight.
- Leave enough time to walk to the gate: I like to ensure I have enough time to walk to the gate without needing to rush. Those gates can sometimes be situated quite far away. If I have to start rushing/waddling quickly or get lost then that’s when I can become more nervous.
- Eat simple before a flight: I don’t know about you but I do not enjoy using the toilet on a plane. So, I try to eat and drink simple food before boarding a flight. I find herbal teas are the best. I also take a few snacks onto the plane, especially if it’s just a short flight.
- Take a bottle of water onto the flight: Having a bottle of water to hand makes me feel at ease. I can have it to hand during the take off and I don’t have to ask for an emergency cup of water.
- Don’t focus on being nervous: I know this sounds silly but I really works. When I flew to New York a few years back it was my first time flying alone. Normally I tell my friends or family that I’m nervous, I ask what noises are, you know the normal! But, on my own I couldn’t do that. I had to sit back and focus on other things. This made me feel much more calm before the flight. These days I try very hard not to mention to my friends if I’m feeling nervous. If I do, I instantly become more nervous and feel very closed in.
- Think about the destination and what you’ll do there: I like to think about all the exciting things I have planned for my adventure. I imagine getting in the taxi and making your way to the hotel, dumping the heavy bags and heading out for the first ice cream of the holiday. I also like to try and plan blog posts in my head (during take off) and then I note them down once we’re in the air.
- Focus on reading: Even if you don’t read the words, just take some time to browse the pages. I like to slowly start looking at the pictures and finding a story to focus on when the flight starts to leave. I try hard to read each word and then by the time we’re in the air I can usually relax a little. The other option would be to focus on playing a game on your tablet or phone.
- Browse the snacks menu: I like to slowly browse through the menu and decide if I need any snacks. I usually order a peppermint or ginger and lemon tea.
- Breathe: If I really can’t focus on something I close my eyes and breathe deeply and very slowly.
- Safe hands: Take a moment to remember that pilots and cabin crew do this on a daily basis and you’re in safe hands.If things get very bad then let a member of the cabin crew know that you’re a nervous flyer when you board the plane. They’ll take good care of you and in many cases they’ll also let you chat to the pilot. Check out my review of the 787 Dreamliner to find out Captain John Murphy’s 3 suggestions for nervous flyers.Do you get nervous when you’re flying? If so, how do you calm those nerves?