Foreword Review — Jan / Feb 2003
The fear of flying has escalated in the last year, with approximately forty-four percent of Americans admitting that they would prefer other modes of transportation. The author-a lecturer, advice columnist, creator of in-flight relaxation programs for major airlines, and author of Healthy, Wealthy and Wise-refused to fly for nine years. Having overcome her own fears, she wants to help other white-knuckle flyers conquer their discomfort.
Arguing that fear “affects the quality of life, often both emotionally and financially,” Edstrom has arranged ten meditations to help her listeners. Using breathing, relaxation, and visualization techniques, she takes the fearful flyer through a series of exercises designed to make it second nature to enter an airport, wait in the boarding area, get onto the plane, take off, and land. She urges flyers to start their exercises several weeks before going on a flight.
Using the metaphor of a “spa-in-the-sky,” the author reminds listeners of the freedom associated with birds in flight, how to release tension from the body, how to stay “grounded in your breaths.” In inviting her listeners to think of a plane ride as both “an enchanting magic carpet ride and your own private retreat,” she makes a strong case for mind over matter. Realistically, a person has to want to fly in order for this audio book to work effectively.
While Edstrom intended her exercises to help fearful flyers, the techniques she teaches can be applied to other areas of life, including: stress management, dealing with fear, managing pain, deep motivation, self-healing, and weight management. Her goal is to “impart skills that you can apply to any fear or phobia for the rest of your life!”