I love flying. As far back as I can remember, my favorite part of traveling has been enjoying the blissful silence of the airplane. Unfortunately, my mother feels differently. We traveled to India a lot when I was a kid and each flight seemed to be progressively more difficult for her. Before the plane even starting rolling off of the tarmac, her anxiety would start to build. To prepare herself for the nausea, headaches, and intense nervousness to come, she’d swallow a few pills and have her brown paper bag at the ready. Inspired by a better solution for her, I did a little digging into products that help flight anxiety and thought I’d share them here for those who might need a way to take the edge off!
1. The Cubix
Fidgeting is one of the best ways to deal with anxiety. Most people that deal with high stress or anxiety find themselves impossibly restless, but finding a healthy way to fidget and direct uneasy attention can help promote instant calm. The Cubix was designed with fidgeters in mind – it features six sides on a hard cube, each with a different “fidget”. The main fidget themes are: spin, click, roll, glide, breathe, and switch. With varied objects on each of the sides (including a small joystick, a clickable ball, and a rotating dial), you’ll be able to keep yourself busy throughout the entire flight. The real beauty of the Cubix, though, is its size – it’s small enough to fit in the palm of your hand, so you won’t have to worry about extra cargo.
2. An Oil Diffuser Necklace
If you haven’t already jumped on the essential oils bandwagon, now would be a great time to start. Oils can help eliminate your anxiety by improving circulation and blood flow, relaxing your muscles, reducing headache, and getting rid of nausea. They do tend to get a bit messy though, and fussing with a large oil diffuser on the plane is just not feasible. Thankfully, getting an oil diffuser necklace can solve this problem in a snap. Pick your favorite oils (peppermint, lavender, and eucalyptus are best for nerves) or carry around one blend of them all and place a few drops inside the pendant. The necklace uses air to diffuse the oils instead of steam, so you’ll be able to smell your blend and calm your nerves without your flight neighbors getting headaches of their own.
3. An Acupressure Pillow
If you have a travel yoga mat and can squeeze in a few asanas before you board the plane, do it! If not, or if you want a little extra tranquil security, an acupressure pillow will do the trick. It’s no secret that acupressure is an ancient goldmine for stress relief, but most people think you have to make an appointment with the local healer to get your dose of repose. That’s where the pillow comes into play. The tiny raised spikes along the entire surface of the pillow help you reach pressure points you might not even know you have. For a soothing plane ride, try positioning the pillow behind your lower back (to hit the pressure point Will’s Chamber). Or, if true calm is what you seek, place the pillow behind your Shoulder Well – the midway point between your shoulder and the base of your neck.
4. An Adult Coloring Book
This one is a no-brainer: coloring makes everything better. As grown-ups, we’re told that coloring is a “kid-only” activity, but adult coloring books have challenged that notion in recent years. You can find books with animal designs, mandala patterns, floral prints, and even iconic landscapes. Whatever your artistic jive might be, throwing a thin activity book and a pack of your favorite colored pencils in your carry-on bag will be easy. There is no technology involved in this peace activity, which means you can open up your book and start rainbowing your life away as soon as your board the flight.
5. A Meditation Playlist
If you don’t like fidgeting and would rather sit still and find your perfect flow, meditating will be the best way to combat your anxiety. Being a seasoned practitioner may be helpful in achieving calm sooner, but being a newbie is perfectly okay. For some direction to your meditation (and a good way to block out the noise of the plane), pop in your headphones and listen to your favorite guided CD or playlist. Some good examples are Oprah Winfrey and Deepak Chopra’s stress and anxiety CD, Roberta Shapiro’s calming collection, and this nature sounds box set.
Find What Works For You
Whether you’re a fidgeter, a meditator, an artist, or all of above, finding the flight-proof relaxation method that works for you will help add the positivity back into your trip. Of course, this is just a short list of the hundreds of relaxation products and tactics out there, so if you have any favorites, leave a comment down below! And of course, happy (and peaceful) travels!