Fear of Flying
It’s that time of year when we get ready to jump on a plane and head to the sun for the annual summer holiday. Whilst there may be many who think nothing of plane travel, some shudder at the thought. The statistics indicate that more women than men are affected and the fear begins in childhood or early 20’s. Surprisingly, approximately 30% of the population are apprehensive yet manage their wide ranging degrees of fear, hesitancy and reluctance using various strategies to cope. Some are relatively successful, usually distraction techniques, others such as drinking to excess may work, but are not ideal and not recommended. Again distraction techniques are good, and practice is required especially if a long haul flight is on the cards. You may question how you practice distracting yourself on a flight, and because of this many people don’t feel there is a solution? Sadly between 2 and 10% of the population avoid plane travel completely preferring to stay with their feet on the ground.
Mindfulness is the theme for this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week. Its a word that is commonly used to describe a technique aimed at encouraging people to manage the intrusive, ruminating thoughts and feelings that can create anxiety and depression.
It’s become very popular in recent years, too popular perhaps, according to this newspaper article http://ind.pn/1HjjnMm “It isn’t going to cure our mental health crisis”, and “it looks set to join medication as the one size fits answer to mental health problems”.
However there are, according to MIND, “75% of people with mental health problems get no help at all” and whilst mindfulness may be questionable for deep rooted mental health issues, ruling it out is not an option either. It is an excellent management and preventative technique to help people cope to achieve some ‘peace’ in their lives and create a sense of balance and control. So what is the mental health crisis?
Mindfulness is a technique that you can learn to help you either, change the way you feel or think about yourself, and your experiences, or find relief and quiet time in a busy and stressful life. Whilst mindfulness is recommended as a treatment for many mental health problems, such as anxiety and depression, it can also be utilised by all of us, of all ages, to help us to live in the present moment and therefor not being preoccupied with the past or present.
Around 20% of the world’s children and adolescents have mental disorders or problems (WHO).
About half of mental disorders begin before the age of 14. Yet, regions of the world with the highest percentage of population under the age of 19 have the poorest level of mental health resources. Most low-and middle-income countries have only one child psychiatrist for every 1 to 4 million people. How does the UK compare?
We all know how important it is to look after our health if we are to be able to function effectively at work. Recognising our limitations, strengths and weaknesses is essential and knowing how to cope when life gets tough is vital. The growing concern with good work-life balance has made us aware of the relationship between our jobs, and our mental and physical well-being. Our physical health and our psychological health impact significantly on each so an holistic approach to health & well-being is recommended.
As managers and/or employers we have a legal responsibility to help our employees achieve this too, so are you doing enough to fulfill your responsibilities?