Californivacation: 10 travel tips for myself

Over two months ago, I wrote an article about travel anxiety and my anticipatory anxieties about the upcoming trips to California and Europe. But I might as well delete the whole damn article because this bitch TRAVELED.

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How on earth did I travel so well? I didn’t, because I was in a plane. 30,000 feet above earth (BA DUM TSSS). Yes, that’s right people. I flew in a plane. And I didn’t freak out one bit because I took ten necessary steps to overcome my anxiety.

Here’s what they are:

1. I wrote down a list of all the people I know who have traveled safely, including my mom who is also anxious, my boss who travels a lot, and Michelle Obama, who is a badass. If she can do everything she does, why can’t I fly?

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2. I told the plane, “I trust you and I thank you.” Please don’t judge me for this.

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3. I stuck a lavender sachet below my nose most of the time for its calming effects.

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4. When the plane took off and I wanted to barf, I reminded myself the barfing feeling wasn’t anxiety. Just barfing.

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5. I snuggled with my life-long homie, Bamboo, a stuffed panda. No joke. I am a child.

messy hair, don’t care

6. I brought all the best movies a girl could think of to occupy the time, including Legally Blonde, Ten Things I Hate About You, and Dolphin Tale.

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7. I kept imagining warm, sunny California weather. It wasn’t real, but it still felt good to believe a lie.

peep the elephant seals behind us

8. I told myself there is no point in having a panic attack. But if I were to, I might as well just get it over with. “Come on panic attack. I’m waiting.”

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9. Off of the plane, I occupied myself with my favorite hobbies, like photography and modeling.

10. I focused on the important things, like bonding with my insane boyfriend, the one who brought a redwood stick on a plane and pretended it was a walking stick to ensure it got through security.

true love

Flying used to be my top fear. I would have nightmares about it—and not even nightmares about falling or crashing, just nightmares about being on a plane. But now, I’m not so scared. Exposure therapy, baby!

As a person with anxiety, it’s easy to identify yourself as an anxious person and let anxiety occupy every opportunity. That’s not healthy. This time, I used these steps to put my anxiety behind me. And now I’m ready for more.

Europe, here I come!

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