You maaaaaay have seen me flexing on Instagram the many, many travel trips I’ve been taking recently. I’ve been to 3 locations in the space of a month and am not even close to finishing! I’ve got so many other trips booked and have been planning a new country to visit almost monthly.
Two years ago if you would have told me that today I would be on a flight to Budapest after just coming home from Barcelona, and before that- turkey…. well I would have just laughed in your face.
Two years ago the thought of getting on a plane filled me with so my dread and anxiety that I would almost cry driving to the airport. I would cling to the person I was travelling with and I wouldn’t be able to breath until the wheels of that plan had touched down in our destination.
So how did I go from an anxious mess to a girl globe-trotting with ease?
Well it took a lot, my friend, let me tell you.
The first thing I want to say is that if you think that travel anxiety is something that you can cure in the space of a short-haul flight then you’ve another thing coming. Travel anxiety takes a hell of a lot of patience, and flights, to get over.
I know SO MANY of you have messaged and DM’d about my travels and asking why and how I managed. Well here’s the post where I spill the beans and let you in on how I managed to get over my travel anxiety.
Before we get into it- please note that I am in no way a doctor, psychologists or trains professional who can offer medical advice. I’m purely speaking about my own experience in the hopes that I can share some light from a personal perspective.
Clear your schedule
One of the main anxieties I had when travelling is the impending doom that I’ll be late/ get delayed/ miss a train/ ruin plans/ generally ruin everything through no fault of my own.
Delayed trains and planes are the bane of your life, but they really don’t have to be the end of the world.
I got over my fear of delays by clearing a schedule for the other side. I didn’t make plans to go to dinner, I didn’t book a specific train and I didn’t give myself a deadline to be anywhere. By knowing that you have no one to disappoint and nothing to miss if your late takes SO MUCH stress away from travelling. Even now if I do have plans/ places to be when I land, I know that a delay really is not the end of the world. I’ll get there eventually and hey, if it costs me a little more money then I can just remind myself how lucky I am to be healthy, alive and in the position to be able to pay for it.
Fly little and often
For me, long haul flights made me want to curl up in a ball and wait for the world to end. So you know what I did? I didn’t do any long haul flights.
For years I only travelled very short flights to local places. I’m quite lucky in a way because my boyfriends family live on the Isle Of Man- so being able to practise flying on such a short haul flight was so beneficial. The flight only lasted about 30 minutes and got me really used to navigating around airports/ deadline with delays/ travelling on my own.
Being able to take short haul flights helped me built up the confidence to fly places a little further, and catch flights that lasted a little longer until eventually I don’t even look at the flight time. Instead I just plug my headphones in and wait for the seatbelt sign.
I am a HEAVY traveller. I’m usually the girl at the airport with the biggest suitcase in the world struggling to carry her extra 3 bags she’s hoping to take onto the cabin.
The stress of lugging multiple bags around the airport really isn’t worth the extra fee outfit choices you give yourself. Teach yourself to travel light and pack it down to one hold bag and one cabin bag. I promise it’ll save so much stress and really help with your anxiety throw out the journey.
Remind yourself of why you’re going
Whether your travelling to see family, take a holiday or explore somewhere completely new, remind yourself of why you’re travelling. Just visualise your destination and keep reminding yourself of why you want to be there and how excited you’ll be when you get there.