Monday, 23 December 2013

Beat or continue to beat the fear, starting right now...

Christmas and New Year are sometimes our busiest time of year.  We literally get loads of bookings over this period getting ready for the coming year.  This is great for us as we get to help loads of new people. However, this blog is for those that have yet to come onto our course or those that have been on our course already...
We have always said a certain message since 1997 and we are going to repeat it again here.  Beating a fear is a process.  Whilst a lot of people are able to treat our course like 'a one stop shop' and get over their fear in a day, we believe it is important to remember the 'beating fear is a process' idea again. 

Some people can have a fear of flying for years and years. This means years and years of being fearful of flying. Can you imagine how many hours of practice at being fearful that must equate to?!  If you do anything for many hours, days, weeks, are going to get better at it. Being fearful is no different.  It is a thing that you can practice and get even better at. The more hours that you are maintaining the being scared, the more hours that you are practicing being scared.

Whether you come onto a course or not, there is a lot that you can do right now.  If you can accept the idea that beating a fear is a process, then there is stuff you can do right now.

Here are a few simple ideas:

  1. If you have a question about flying, safety, or anything like that...please post on our message board via One of the team will answer it as best we can and at least you know that you will get a proper answer.
  2. Stop watching any of those programmes on TV related to flying such 'Air Crash Investigation' 'Seconds from Disaster' ... You know the type.  Believe it or not, these programmes are not designed to help you beat your fear of flying.  They are put on because they know that 1 in 5 people have a fear of flying which equals 12 million potential viewers just in the UK alone!
  3. Don't watch any programmes that are on TV to do with airports, airlines - even if we are in the programme!  Most of the time, the contributing airlines etc. don't have any control over what actually goes out in the programme.
  4. Don't read any newspaper articles about aviation for the same reason as point 2.
  5. Buy some books written by fear of flying experts that help you to understand all the technical side of things that go on to make flying as safe as it can be.  (shameless plug - our book 'flying without fear, 101 fear of flying questions answered' is pretty good!)
  6. Find an activity that helps you to learn to breathe and relax. This is to get your general anxiety levels down. Living our busy lives is stressful enough so, adding in the stress of flying for anyone can deplete our reserves of calm.  Whether it be 3 deep breaths once a day or taking up tai chi, martial arts, yoga or listen to relaxation CDS; It is all good and will help.
  7. Travelling anywhere is about research and planning. The more you prepare yourself for where you are going, the more that you feel in control. The reality is that you are not in control at all - you become part of a procedure/process once you enter the airport.    You can check out the websites of airports that you are flying from and to so you can see the layout and facilities available. Once you are in the airport 'system' there is a certain amount of 'go with the flow' that we all have to just fit in with.
  8. Nothing is 100% safe.  Western World commercial aviation flying is doing everything that it can to become as near to 100% as possible.  The pilots, crew, engineers, ground staff and air traffic that you put your lives in the hands of are extremely well trained and regulated.  If you want an example of this, we challenge you to look into the training and testing that a commercial pilot has to go through - before they are even offered a job as a junior first officer.  Do the same for air traffic controllers - it might pleasantly surprise you.
Remember this. You were not born with the fear of flying, it is something that you learned at some point. In our experience, it is never too late to learn something new.

Evaluation of our courses

We randomly evaluate our courses to check their effectiveness.  We use two measures.  The most important measure that we use is the amount of improvement per attendee from the start of our course to the end of course.  We ask everyone to rate their fear of flying on a scale 1-10 (1 = hate it: 10 = love it)  at the beginning of the course. We then ask them the same question at the end of the course.  On the two recent courses that we evaluated, the improvement score (in other words, 'do you feel better about flying or not?') was 100% positive.  That means 100% of the feedback forms that we collected in showed an improvement from every individual in the room.    The reason that we measure this figure is because whether someone flies at the end of the course or not, is not necessarily the most important measure.  This is because the ratio of our attendees is roughly as follows:

  • 50% currently fly to differing levels of anxiety/fear
  • 40% have flown at some point and stopped for some reason (some flew once, others flew 'for years' and then suddenly stopped)
  • 10% never flown
That is why we measure how differently people feel about flying from the start to the end - not just count 'bums on seats' as the saying goes.

We hope that you are able to get a break over this holiday period and from the FWF team we wish you 'Happy Holidays'

Take care
Paul & Richard

Future Dates


Adult premium group course – £255 inc VAT
London Luton 19th January 2014
Birmingham 2nd March 2014
Gatwick 9th March 2014
Manchester 13th April 2004

Group ground only course (no flight) £120 in VAT
Leeds Bradford 12th January 2014
Newcastle 2nd February 2014
Bristol 23rd March 2014

Children’s course is £375 (for one child, one fear free adult, inc flight and refreshments)
Gatwick 9th March 2014

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