1 - Fiona's
Flying Phobia Case 1 - Fiona's Story
I am struggling to put into words my experience with Neil and the hypnotherapy sessions I had with him in the run up to the Christmas holidays. I think the reason for this is that the fear and anxiety I felt six months ago is so far from my thoughts now it is quite difficult to conjure them back up and to put them in writing. Perhaps if I explain what I was thinking six months ago and compare that to what I am thinking now - it might help.
I got married in October last year, and had booked a few weeks honeymoon to coincide with the Christmas holidays - skiing in Canada. A truly dream once-in-a-lifetime experience. Unfortunately instead of being excited I was petrified. Despite going on holidays abroad all my life, my fear of flying was beginning to take over my life. It was no longer confined to the day before the flight and the flight itself. Instead I was being kept awake at night with nightmares, losing my concentration at work, having panic attacks at home and in public places - if I saw anything to do with planes or flying on the television it would set me off.
This was almost three months before the trip - I knew I had to do something otherwise I felt sure I wouldn't be able to get on that plane and my honeymoon would be ruined before it even started - not to mention what that would do to my new husband! I had been prescribed tranquilizers previously from my GP and had read every fear of flying book I could get my hands on but nothing really worked, in my research I came across this webpage and decided to email Neil and see what he could do for me. Well, I was terrified writing the email, forcing myself to think about the things that scared me the most - but I went into a lot of detail and Neil phoned me back very quickly and booked in a session.
To say I was a little nervous going to that first session is a bit of an understatement - I am not sure if it was because of all the nonsense we hear about hypnotherapy, or because I didn't want to spend two hours talking about flying. Either way Neil immediately put me at ease and gently and quietly started the session. The time went by incredibly quickly and I left with another session booked and a lighter feeling in my heart. The second session a few weeks later was where we got into the nitty gritty - how a frightening mountain walk had manifested itself into a fear of flying - and how by facing this situation now could free me from the feelings I had then as a child. All very emotional but a highly rewarding experience none the less. One final session just to relax some more, and to practice my hypnosis techniques then I was ready for my holiday.
The day of my flight came quickly - but I wasn't nervous at all - remembering the techniques given to me by Neil I breezed my way though a fog bound flight to Heathrow, and an eight hour flight then to Canada. I was actually excited about the flight - we got upgraded and I got to drink champagne and laugh and enjoy myself. I just did not have any fear left in me. I did keep Neil's CD on my iPod - although mostly because it helped me to nod off, which is a huge advantage on a transatlantic flight!
I did have the most amazing experience on the transatlantic return flight, the whole plane was in darkness as it was a night flight - I couldn't get to sleep because of jet lag so I was staring out the window looking into the pitch black night - then all of a sudden the aurora borealis, as green as emeralds shone out across the sky - it sparkled and lasted for about 20 minutes - its the only time in the whole flight that a tear came to my eyes - absolutely awesome! I would never have even looked out the window previously.
As for how I feel now? Well I am flying to Dublin next Friday taking my husband on a surprise trip for his birthday, we are heading to Spain at Easter to visit family and I am going on a round the world trip next autumn - taking in as much of South East Asia as I can.
To say that my time with Neil has changed my life is not a gushing overstatement, I am a much more confident person now - I feel almost liberated, like somebody has opened some sort of box I had been hiding in.
It has been a challenging journey, but it has most definitely been worth it.
Neil, I wish you all the best for the future, and if any of your clients want any more reviews from me I would be happy to supply them.
Chris' partner had booked a skiing holiday as a surprise for her 21st. birthday but as they had never been abroad before he was unaware that she was terrified of flying. She also had great problems with bus or train travel.
In the course of age regression under hypnosis and analysis it turned out that she had been accidentally locked in a cupboard under the stairs when she was six years old. It was summer-time and the family had friends around for a Barbeque. They were all out in the garden when Chris ran inside to get a ball or something from under the stairs. The door shut behind her, she couldn't get out and of course no-one out in the garden realised for quite a while that she was stuck. When they unlocked the door and let her out she was very upset and had been shouting and crying for quite a while. She had not recalled this incident until during the therapy which was quite a surprise to her.
The childhood reaction of fear caused by being trapped in the cupboard under the stairs was no longer appropriate to adult life but the subconscious mind looks back to ways we have dealt with a problem before and responds accordingly. The fear and panic reaction caused by being shut in and trapped had never been resolved. Children can't and don't resolve issues, they do not have the emotional or psychological maturity to enable that. They just forget it, bury it and get on with living in now as children do. They then relive it when a trigger event fires it off again. (This is a common cause of phobias.)
This bad event in her childhood was, unknown to her, the cause of her distress, and through additional therapy the problem was removed.
A few weeks later I received a postcard. "Hi Neil, Just to say Switzerland is wonderful. I feel great & having a panic free time!! Thanks."
When I saw her next she was looking happy and radiant...
As discussed after my last appointment, I have attached a note of my experience from hypnotherapy. Sorry it's taken a while - my last trip was delayed - so I only flew again a week or so ago.
Thanks again for everything, Kathryn
I used to love travelling all over the world - and have lived abroad when I was young, so it made no sense to me when I started to feel nervous about flying. I decided that it was a case of mind over matter - I knew flying was the safest way to travel. After bottling everything up over several years I got to the point where I was making excuses, avoiding flying and becoming increasingly stressed. Eventually I confessed everything to my family who were very supportive. I approached my Doctor, who referred me to a clinical psychologist. Talking things through with them helped me to find the source of my fear - a combination of a bad flight while I was severely stressed due to other factors. This helped me to resolve some of my stress issues - but the fear of flying remained.
Having recently started a new job, my boss asked me to visit a customer in the South of England. I didn't want to let my boss down, and I wanted to get over my fear - so I researched hypnotherapy on the internet, and booked an appointment with Neil - the night before my flight!!! I didn't know what to expect from Hypnotherapy, and found that I was aware of everything that was going on all of the time, but became very relaxed. We again explored the reasons for my fear of flying, and the hypnotherapy helped me to get rid of some of those stresses that I had held on to for many years. I got up the next morning and got on my flight, I was still quite nervous - but Neil had given me a CD to listen to - to keep me relaxed. I got on the flight and they asked me to put my CD player away until after take off. Initially I thought "Oh No!" but I was fine through take off - and chatted to my boss - which was a major step forward for me, as take-off was always the worst bit. The flight back again was great, I sat and read a magazine during take-off and landing.
I went back for another hypnotherapy session about a week later - really just to re-inforce the first session. About a month later I took another flight - this time on my own - with no one to talk to, to take my mind off it, and in slightly windier weather! This time I did not have the anticipation that I had always experienced in the past. It was quite strange - my brain was telling me I should be nervous - but my body wasn't responding!!! I find the hypnotherapy CD very useful to shut the little voice in the back of my head off. Although I was still a bit nervous, that's all it was - nerves, and once I settled down I was fine.
I now feel I am back in control, and will happily fly again. If the nerves get too much, I know I can always go back for another hypnotherapy session if I need it, but I think that the more I fly again, the more relaxed I will become. I need to practice being relaxed when flying, rather than practicing being stressed like I did before!!
I have now booked a holiday with my boyfriend and some friends this summer - and I'll have to fly. It's my first foreign holiday for about 5 years - and I can't wait!!!
© Neil Robinson 2013
The contents of this website are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or medical treatment.