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Few things are more unsettling than a mental health struggle tens of thousands of feet in the air. If you struggle with anxiety, there are a few preparations you should make. Have your favorite songs, movies, and TV shows downloaded to your phone or tablet. Before flying, charge your devices fully and bring an external battery with you as well. Download your meditations, podcasts and mindfulness exercises ahead of time so they can be accessed without wifi. If there are certain activities which help you calm down like coloring or working with a handheld material, bring those with you as well. In addition, look to these two tips for working through anxiety on the plane.

Get Up And Move

Unless the captain has specifically instructed the passengers to stay seated, you’re free to roam about the cabin. Anxiety is energy caused by a misfire in the sympathetic nervous system. Your fight or flight response is firing off the production of stress hormones like adrenaline and cortisol which is preparing your body to take action in order to fight or run from your real or perceived threat. Sitting in anxiety really means sitting in adrenaline and cortisol coursing through your bloodstream. Staying sedentary means staying seated in all of that stressful energy. Make your way to the aisle and take a few laps up and down the aisle way. If you’re on a plane with more than one aisle, walk up and down each of them a couple of times. Include some leg movements and stretches along the way. Try walking with high knees or doing lunges. Try reaching your hands above your head and stretching your arms upward- don’t stretch to the side, you might knock people in the head. When you reach an area with bathrooms or the flight attendant cabin, take a moment to stretch forward, to the sides, and move your body around.

Go To The Bathroom

Being around other people during an anxiety attack can be even more anxiety inducing. Trying to close your eyes and listen to a meditation or song is stressful when you’re surrounded by ongoing stimuli. Thankfully, planes are equipped with bathrooms which offer you some privacy and quiet. Take your headphones and head to the lavatory for a few minutes of concentrated breathing, listening to calming input, and finding a calm foundation again. While in there, you can wash your hands and practice mindfulness with the water. Wet a paper towel and place it on your neck, which will send cooling, calming signals throughout the nervous system. You can splash your face with water as well. For an alternative technique: take a dance break. Plane bathrooms are small, but they’re just enough space to have a standing dance party. Move the energy, get your blood pumping and boost some dopamine production with a favorite song.

The Guest House Ocala specializes in the treatment of trauma, addictions, and related mental health issues like anxiety. Everyone has a story. If you are living with unmanageable anxiety as a result of trauma it is critical for you to know, you are not alone. Help is available. You can and you will recover. Call us today for information on our custom plans of treatment and our private luxury care: 1-855-483-7800