When the plane encounters turbulence, I get really, really nervous. I know it’s a phobia. It isn’t rational. Turbulence is normal and rarely causes a problem for a commercial aircraft.

The thing about phobias is that they are hard to get over with logic and rational thinking.

Has anyone else overcome a fear of turbulence? What was your secret? I travel a lot on business, and I’m really tired of the stress I feel when the plane starts bouncing around the sky.

Meditate on your fear. Visualise in minute detail what is happening. Accept it. Let it go. Rinse and repeat. This lets you explore consequences in a safe context, and learn to calm your autonomous reactions, so that when you are in the situation, the calmness kicks in, rather than the fear.

Or Klonopin and Stilnox. :thumbsup:

Thank you Buttercup. That sounds better than what I normally do, which is too ridiculous to write about here.

I like the drugs idea. Can you buy those OTC in Shanghai? I’m there on a job right now.

Stilnox wasn’t available OTC when I was there two years ago, but I had lots from Taiwan and a friend asked me for some. Klonopin, I don’t know. Maybe not if Stilnox isn’t available. Serenal might be easier to source as it’s abused less.

zolpidem 10–20mg
clonazepam 1mg
oxazepam 10mg

Generic names. Obviously, google 'em – don’t take benzos on my say-so. Don’t drink on clonazepam, and don’t stay awake on zolpidem – you’ll trip balls which won’t be fun if you are nervous.

how do you know so much about drugs?? just curious?? medical background?

Nope. I’m just a neurotic self-obsessed hypochondriac web-doctor with a great appreciation for Asia’s laxity on the prescription and vending of psychoactive substances.

Weird. I had a dream about turbulence last night. Utterly freaks me out. I HATE flying. I always have a few quick Scotches, then gobble down some Diazepam or Flunitrazepam. Then another three or so glasses of red wine. By that stage I’m looking forward to crashing.

I usually treat my fear with 2-3 beers, jimi. It does help.

And I can relate to your last comment. After a really bad flight, I get so tired of being freaked out that my attitude is “If I die it will be a relief.” Of course, I don’t want me or any one else on the plane to die. You know what I mean. Fear is exhausting.

I was on a flight last year that ran into some pretty serious turbulence. It doesn’t usually bother me at all, but we were really bouncing and I was starting to get pretty nervous. Then I heard some giggling and looked a few seats back across the aisle to see this 4-5 year old kid having the time of his life. He was so excited, with a huge grin on his face, laughing like crazy about the fun ride he was having. It went on for a pretty long time, but that kid just kept on laughing. His joy made me forget my worry (and really made my day). But I guess you can’t always count on a giggling 5 year old to distract you from your fears…

I always think: “The kid’s too young and dumb to know he’s about to die.”

It does help me to distract myself by chatting with someone, but I hate to bug the people around me.

The thing to remember is that you have no control, at all, so there’s no point dwelling on it.

I know. I do get to that point eventually, and I calm down. It’s just the first 30 minutes or so of a rough flight that get to me.

Even worse is when everything is smooth for hours, and I relax totally, only to be jarred into a panic when we suddenly run into a rough patch.

I’m prepping a bunch of stuff tonight, hence the late posts. I’ll have to get to sleep soon, and dream of a very smooth flight home.

You’ll be fine. Just focus on your breathing.

Tapping therapy might be good for you, in the longer term. Some of the info out there is a bit stupid and faux mystical (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emotional_ … _Technique), or claims to use acupressure points (I don’t think it does), but don’t be put off by that. You simply make up your own sequence of taps on your body which sort of resets / distracts your brain in the short term. If you use it with positive visualisation, you can stop any weirdy behaviour in its tracks, simply by distracting your brain from its thought loops and making it focus on movements. Paul McKenna teaches it as a technique to distract yourself from fears and addictions.

Here’s a link from one of his sites which explains how to do it: mckenna.com/default.aspx?pid=45

(This is about losing weight, but that doesn’t matter.)

I have a theory that phobias are ‘good’. They say that nothing gets rid of hypochondria faster than being ill; irrational fears about things over which we have no control are a way of projecting genuine fear about the unknown and uncontrollable onto an everyday situation, which ultimately helps us deal with real demons.

Or they may just be there because we have no fear of predators, and that sort of thing any more, yet we haven’t evolved away that extreme rush of fight or flight hormones that a sabre-toothed tiger excites in us, so we ‘waste’ them on irrational situations, instead, because we don’t really need them any more (well, you scooter drivers in Taipei do, but most humans don’t …). Like our autonomous nervous system’s prehensile tail, almost?

Phobias fascinate me.

I can tell you that arriving safely always makes me appreciate the life I have. In that sense, the phobia is a good thing (and I do have a good life–if it sucked, I might not be afraid to lose it).

I wasn’t afraid of flying, but now when we fly as a family I get mad. Hyper. Not turbulence, it’s the take off and landing. I have developed this fear that the flight has all gone well, and as soon as the tyres touch the ground, BOOM! We go up in flames. :loco:

BC, phobias scare me, at least my own do.

That is what is so insidious about phobias–there is no logic involved. I am most at ease on landing. I also don’t mind take off. But those are the most unsafe parts of the flight. No rationality involved at all.

I am terrified of spiders, and hospitals/dentists/doctors/death/being ill.

I’ve checked into hotels to avoid spiders, and as a child, I hurt myself to get rid of imaginary diseases. Both are completely retarded and shameful, and the second thing is something I really hate about myself - it’s selfish and insane, to the extent that I do it.

I had, and I don’t have it anymore, but I always had to sit with my back against something, preferably a wall coz I felt sth. would attack me. Or someone. I did not get crazy, but would quietly change my seat. No way could I sit with my back to a door or a large open area behind me.

ne doesn’t have the energy to maintain phobias with kids around and suddenly a year ago, I noticed my daughter looking for back support. She always sits everywhere facing the door. If she has an open area bhind her, you’ll see her nervoulsly glancing behind and straightening up. After weeks of observation, I talked to her…exactly the same phobia.

No she has never seen me afraid and I out grew it automatically, but makes me ponder :ponder: co-incidence?? Or just a very common phobia?

I have a fear of getting into a lift (elevator) with strangers. Even if I’m late for work or an appointment, I wait until I’m absolutely sure that nobody else is in the elevator. But most of all, I fear flying. I sweat and shake until I fall into the calm bliss of serene oblivion after my …th drink.

I grab the seat rests and hold on for dear life when the turbulence hits. I try to rationalize in my mind what the wings are doing, the disrupted airflow, the low risk, the captains experience, the kid in the next aisle oblivious to it all. It all works…

Until the next big bump.