Overcoming Fear of Flying with Hypnosis


David, a 35-year-old software engineer, had struggled with a debilitating fear of flying for over a decade. His fear stemmed from a turbulent flight he experienced at the age of 22, which left him with severe anxiety about air travel. Despite his successful career and a supportive family, David’s fear severely restricted his ability to travel for both work and leisure. His phobia led to missed career opportunities and strained relationships as he avoided family vacations that involved flying.

David tried various methods to overcome his fear, including medication which gave him some relief but caused uncomfortable side effects. CBT was of some help to understand the root causes but not sufficiently to overcome the phobia. Deep breathing techniques and visualisation were of some help.

After years of struggle, David came across an article about the effectiveness of hypnotherapy for phobias. Sceptical, but desperate for a solution, he decided to consult me after also being recommended by a friend.
The first session involved, after him filling in an initial assessment form, an explanation as to the principle of Hypnotherapy and an induction with some confidence building suggestions. At this stage I did not feel it necessary to regress to any initial trauma which we had discussed prior to induction. I used deepening techniques and, having explained anchoring, I incorporated an anchoring technique. I took him on an imaginary visit to the airport, from packing his luggage to boarding calmly, the plane. This was accompanied by positive suggestions as to his wellbeing and safety.

The following session was to reinforce the first and with the use of an MP3 between sessions, to also give him practise in developing depth of relaxation.

After three sessions he reported a significant reduction in his anxiety and the beginnings of looking forward to his next trip. He did book a short domestic flight to test the effectiveness of the treatment, with great success. I am pleased to report that he has since then made several long haul flights and is thrilled with his new found freedom and confidence.