DYNACII's Life Coach
September 16, 2014
I am being offered a job that requires me to travel, but I have a fear of flying

Dear Life Coach,

I am a 25-year-old female. Recently I applied for the job of my dreams, but it seems that I am unable to take it because it requires me to fly once per month to other territories. The truth is that I have a serious dislike (fear) of flying, because it makes me feel sick and uncomfortable (I sit for hours with absolutely nothing to do but wait and I cannot move about). I must respond to this company within six months and I do not know what to do.{{more}}

Fearful Flyer (FF)

Dear FF,

You are so fearful of flying that it is preventing you from launching into your career.

Your Situation:

Here are some factors that have contributed to your present situation: aviophobia, motion sickness, a crippled career launch, and unemployment. I will address these briefly.


Aviophobia refers to the fear of flying on an aeroplane. This phobia may be complicated with other related phobias such as claustrophobia (fear of being confined, restricted, or being unable to escape from a closed space), acrophobia (fear of height), agoraphobia (fear of being unable to escape from a place in the event that one has a panic attack). Aviophobia has prevented individuals from being involved in travel related to work, business, or pleasure.

Motion Sickness

Motion sickness is a feeling of nausea and dizziness, sometimes accompanied by vomiting, (resulting from stimulation by motion of the semicircular canals of the ear) during travel by vehicles, including aeroplanes.

Crippled Career Launch

Millions of individuals the world over avoid travel related to work (crippling their business or career even before they get started). You have been given a good offer, and as the saying goes, “opportunity knocks but once”. You may never have this chance again. The good thing is you have a six-month period in which to respond, and maybe during that time you may be able to do something about this condition.


You are a young professional on the verge of your vocation for which you have studied hard and waited long. You have been unemployed for a while and now there is an opening. You should think carefully before you decline, because in a decade of recession(s) you are quite fortunate to have an offer, unlike millions without a job.

What to Do:


Decide whether you view flying merely as an inconvenience or whether you have a serious phobia (fear).

Weigh the Pros and Cons

Take the time to figure out what is more important to you: being employed and having to deal with flying or being unemployed and far away from aeroplanes. Either way it is your choice and you can decide what is best for you, as you are the one who will have to live with the outcome.

See a Counsellor/Therapist

If you do decide to brave it and take the job, you may benefit from work with a therapist using exposure therapy in order to overcome your fear of flying. One or more of the following techniques may be used:

In Vivo – This involves direct exposure to the feared object, situation, or activity in real life, such as taking an aeroplane flight.

Imaginal – Imagining the feared object, situation or activity e.g. Imagining that you are taking an aeroplane flight.

Virtual Reality – Virtual reality technology can be used to create the sensation of taking an aeroplane flight.

Interoceptive – Deliberately bringing on the physical sensation created by flying that are harmless, yet feared such as nausea/motion sickness.

Guided – Help the client construct an exposure fear hierarchy in which feared objects, activities, or situations are ranked according to difficulty, starting with the mildest.

Flooding – Beginning exposure with the most difficulty in the fear hierarchy tasks.

Systematic Desensitization – Combining exposure with relaxation exercises to make them feel more manageable and to associate the feared objects, activities or situation with relaxation.

These techniques are intended to help reduce and or eliminate the fear of the object or situation (such as flying), or help the individual to feel more comfortable with the event. It will also help the individual to feel more empowered over the situation.

Use Gravol

Gravol is a medication that is used for the treatment of nausea caused by motion sickness, including that caused by aeroplanes. You may consult your doctor on this.

Occupy Yourself

Flying can certainly be confining and boring. Many individuals sleep, read, watch movies, listen to music, play video games, or do intellectual work while they fly. If you become absorbed in one of these activities you will be surprised at how quickly the time passes.

FF, in life there are many challenges and obstacles, but we must find ways to surmount them and not let them stand in the way of our success. All the best as you make your decision.

Life Coach


Need help with relationship and other problems? Ask DYNACII’s Life Coach. Email your questions to [email protected] To chat with the Life Coach, visit: http://www.dynacinternational.com. Dynamic Action Center International Inc. (DYNACII) a non-governmental organization committed to social and spiritual empowerment.