View Full Version : How do you conquer your fears?

02-18-2012, 10:43 AM
I have an insanely crippling fear of flying. It stems from my experiences living through 9/11 (I worked on th 25th floor of the WFC). It has controlled my life in so many ways.

We are flying to Florida tomorrow to visit my parents. It will be my whole family, DH and three kids. I'm so anxious that I burst out crying at random times.

I have some valium I could take but I don't want to because I'm scared that it will adversely affect the baby who I still nurse.


02-18-2012, 11:26 AM
Oh, Alisa, I'm sorry you have to go through such stress. And I can totally understand why you have this phobia after being there on 9/11, wow!

I'm lucky enough to not have this fear, but I have the fear of trucks, to the point that I prefer walking in the middle of the street rather than walking on the sidewalk between a house and a parked truck. I feel claustrophobic.

Anyway, maybe some relaxation techniques could help, sort of self-hypnosis: focus on breathing, create a "bubble" of safe space around you and your family, remind yourself that there are more "chances" to die in an elevator than in a plane accident, remember that the security was hugely increased after 9/11. Sorry I can't help more.

(((((hugs))))) to you.

02-18-2012, 11:26 AM
Can you take Dramamine? It's for motion sickness, but it will also make you drowsy. Of course, that doesn't help with anxiety, but you could snooze through it.

The thing that keeps me from being anxious is knowing that there are flights taking off every second all over the world and you don't hear about crashes or accidents very often compared to the millions of flights. Those millions of flights are a SUCCESS! :)

Best of luck. I hope you find a way to calm your fears.

02-18-2012, 10:48 PM
Oh, Alisa! BIG HUGS!!!! No wonder you feel that way. I've heard that some people try to tune out the airport setting (sitting and waiting increases the anxiety or so I've heard) but sounds like you'll be busy with your family so you can't use earphones to tune it all out. Other people have said to do what Donna said (a little dramamine or something) and then every time you get anxious, visualize your destination and all the fun things you'll be doing there (it's kind of like resetting your brain or something to focus on the reward for the stress of flying). One person even said to think about what they'd lose if they didn't get on the plane (ticket prices, the cost of the vacation, etc.). I'm not sure if that is negative motivation or what but I guess it works for some.

Anyway, I'll be sending positive thoughts your way today. Please let us know how it went.
Hugs :)

02-18-2012, 11:51 PM
You know how I feel, sweetie. I know you can do it. I like what Chloe said about the "bubble." It's just you 4. You and your husband and your kids. Maybe you can try to focus on them and what is happening, right in front of you, in the here and now. Getting them settled in. Getting them occupied. Getting them snacks. I KNOW it's easier said than done. You are a brave woman. You are a strong wife and mommy. You can do this. :hearts:

02-19-2012, 01:30 AM
As someone who has suffered from anxiety since my 20's, this is what helps me (in addition to what the others have said): -
-pay attention to your body...when I get anxious I hunch up my shoulders and I have to consciously relax them, having DH rub my back really helps. If your body is relaxed your mind can relax.
-BREATHE. If you feel panicky, take the deepest breath you can and hold it for a slow count of ten, this helps keep you from hyperventilating.
-visualization is good. Distraction works better for me.
-I break up my anxiety-inducing situations into small increments...I tell myself I can handle *whatever it is* for 5 minutes. and then 5 minutes more, and so on. NOT "I'm going to be on this plane for 4 hours."

Personally I love flying but I get so stressed out with worries about getting to the airport on time to not miss the flight, getting stuck in security, luggage, etc. that I spend a fair amount of time in the bathroom before trips. :blink: Once I'm actually on the plane, though, my stress melts away and I always enjoy myself.

You will too!

02-19-2012, 03:09 AM
Angie, I love your suggestion about relaxing your body to relax your mind. Reminds me of Gretchen Rubin's motto: "Act the way you want to feel." And it really works, at least for the happiness side of it, so I'm sure it helps for anxiety too!

02-19-2012, 11:00 AM
You've gotten some great advice here, Alisa! Hugs and I'll pray you get through it without too much stress. Enjoy your trip to see your parents!

02-19-2012, 11:20 PM
Wow really great advice ladies!
Alisa, sending positive vibes your way. I know that it won't be easy for you but like Kate said you are a stong woman you can do this!
Hope that you have a wonderful vacation!

02-19-2012, 11:25 PM
Oh, Alisa, I can't imagine what it must have been like to have gone through what you did. It's no wonder you are scared. Ihope you can get past your fears so you can enjoy your trip.