Hello Keith,
I just wanted to pass on my (and my partner’s!) huge thanks to you for helping me conquer my fear of flying. If you remember I came along to your course on 19th March. I’ve since notched up a staggering 20,000 air miles, flying to Fiji and back!
When I flew this time, I didn’t feel the crippling apprehension I have previously. I remembered a very important phrase – “live in the present” – this was such an important thing for me to remember. You also advised to “think positively” and try stop all those awful negative thoughts that have frankly chewed away for years. I “dared” to try it (!), and it was a revelation! Another thing which I found very helpful was your honesty “there WILL be turbulence” – fact! So when it came, it didn’t send me into a blind panic, I just tried to live in the moment, and remembered it was “uncomfortable, but not dangerous”. In actual fact the first flight experienced no detectable turbulence at all (and I’ve been very receptive to it over the years!). This was on an 11 hour flight! The second flight was certainly more bumpy (one of the other passengers started swearing she was so worried!), but I held on in there and tried to get used to it, and it passed eventually. You also said “frankly you need to try to change, otherwise you will never lose your fear” – it made me take responsibility for it, and I think that was the push I needed.
Having a young child with me definitely helped – I didn’t have time to be permanently fearful, my focus was on her. I also travelled on fantastic airline (Air New Zealand) part of the way. I found their approach very refreshing, professional, but extremely warm, and “human”. The fact we managed to get upgraded really helped as it made the flight more of a “pampering” experience, than being made to feel squashed in, something that I think has been a problem in the past. Their safety videos are so light hearted and funny – it just took away that sense of dread I’d had before. Air Pacific had a fairly ancient jumbo, but again their customer service was just excellent – what a difference that makes. For the first time I fell asleep on a plane… unbelievable! It feels like I’ve been given the key to go and enjoy the world – it’s a massive relief and I realise how incredibly draining the fear has been for me and people close to me. I know that for sure, turbulence will never be my favourite thing, but feeling terrified just doesn’t help anyone, and now I know I can do it!!
Thank you so much yet again (and do feel free to reproduce any of the above if you think it could help others).
With very best wishes and a sincere thank you.

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