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Pauline McKinnon Fear of Flying Interview

Get Over Your Fear Of Flying Before Before It Affects Your Holiday, Your Reputation – And Your Health!

According to Pauline McKinnon, owner and founding director of the Stillness Meditation Therapy Centre in Kew, Melbourne, "thousands of people will start their end of year holidays this year with an airline flight that they absolutely hate.

"It is completely normal to feel some level of anxiety heading into a holiday however some people are so scared of flying that it affects their enjoyment of the upcoming holiday and increases personal health risks too.

"Anxiety can cause spikes in your blood pressure. This can cause serious harm to your health. Anxiety can cause hyperventilation and lead to panic attacks. Anxiety creates too much nervous tension and when this becomes habitual, anxiety becomes a constant companion.

"Some people are so fearful of flying that they avoid traveling anywhere that involves getting on an aircraft. This reduces their holiday options significantly and fills their lives with potential disappointment.

"I have helped many people over the years to overcome their fear of flying by teaching them intensive meditation. At my Centre we aim to help people master anxiety before anxiety masters them!"

According to statistics, over 10% of people struggle with a phobia. The American National Institute of Mental Health describes a phobia as an intense, irrational fear of something that poses little or no actual danger. Of these phobias, aviophobia (fear of flying) is the most common with some 2.5 – 6.5 percent of people scared of flying.

"The underlying issue associated with fear of flying is control – or the feeling of not being in control. For some there is also a feeling of claustrophobia, because they are trapped in a confined space," Pauline McKinnon added.

"The bizarre thing here is that while people realise they can't seek comfort by going up to the cockpit to find out what is going on, some will resort to hiding in the toilet which is an even more confined space. This is the problem with phobias, they can make you do funny things that are not rational in a bid to feel safer.

"In stillness meditation therapy, people learn to deeply relax their mind. In this way, reactivity is reduced naturally and travellers can look forward to an easier journey. A calm mind creates a calm body – which is relaxed, comfortable – and in calm control."

Pauline McKinnon and her team love helping people feel happier ... at ease and in control – not only of their upcoming flight, but in greater control of their entire life!

The Stillness Meditation Therapy Centre offers regular meditation sessions for all age groups with options of daytime or evening attendance. Stillness Meditation Therapy sessions are available one on one or within a personalised group.

"I recommend booking in now so you are well and truly ready to really enjoy your upcoming holidays," Pauline McKinnon said.

Interview with Pauline McKinnon

Question: How common is aviophobia (fear of flying)?

Pauline McKinnon: A fear of flying, or Aviophobia, is one of the most common anxieties, with an estimated prevalence ranging from 2.5% to 6.5% of the population.

Question: What affects does aviophobia have on people?

Pauline McKinnon: Restricts freedom of choice, denies visiting loved ones, creates high stress levels which leads to further anxieties.

Question: Can you talk us through how a fear of flying risks a person's health?

Pauline McKinnon: Too much anxiety can increase blood pressure and there is a strong likelihood of stress/anxiety leading to a range of further illnesses. My mentor Dr Ainslie Meares linked high levels of anxiety especially to the possibility of cancer and was the initiator of this line of thinking.

Question: How can aviophobia be treated?

Pauline McKinnon: Most effectively by intensive relaxation – if following my path, then this style of relaxation must involve mental rest within the experience of 'stillness' meditation – he Aiinslie Meares original therapeutic meditation created by him in the 1950's – 60's and promoted since 1983 through my work.

Question: What is meditation therapy?

Pauline McKinnon: Ideally, mental rest. There are numerous styles of meditation promoted today but in my own experience, Stillness Meditation as the original therapeutic meditation proves highly effective.

Question: How can this therapy be used for other fears and anxiety?

Pauline McKinnon: Please refer to my book In Stillness Conquer Fear for all details on the effectiveness of this approach.

Question: How can we practice intensive meditation, at home?

Pauline McKinnon: Yes, of course – and in fact home or private practice for always is the ideal maintenance treatment. However, most people benefit best by initially experiencing this formally and within a therapeutic environment, with the assistance of the therapist.

Interview by Brooke Hunter

Photo by Tom Barrett on Unsplash


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