Can you handle the Frustrations of Inevitable Flight Delays?
A few years ago on an unseasonably cold mid-winters day, my daughter and I were preparing to fly from Tampa, Florida to Charleston, West Virginia to do training to help people understand how we, as humans, work psychologically and how we create our feelings via our thoughts. It was a very early flight, and we quickly went through security and boarded the plane.
We found our seats and waited for the plane to take off. We waited, and waited, and waited. Finally, the pilot made an announcement, informing us that the aircraft couldn’t take off because there was ice on the wings, and that Tampa airport did not have deicing equipment, so he would have to wait for the sunshine to melt the ice.
As the wait continued, we watched through our window as an airport employee brought a lift bucket near the wing of the airplane, and went up to do a visual inspection of the ice on the wing. Assuming that we would now be given the all clear for takeoff, we sat back in our seats and waited. And waited. Nervously I checked my watch, and it was going to be hard to make our connecting flight in Charlotte if we didn’t leave soon.
Checking my watch again a few minutes later, I turned to my daughter. “We are going to miss our connection,” I stated irritably, “I don’t know what we are supposed to do. They depend on us to be there to lead the training. People are waiting for us”.
With an amused expression on her face, she let me finish my tirade. It only annoyed me more that she wasn’t upset too.
“Mom, we will get there when we get there, and we can’t help the holdup,” she said, and then continued, “What are we going to be teaching today?”
Wow! So quickly I had gotten caught up in my thinking about a situation that was totally out of my control. I had worked myself up into a feeling of anxiety and distress. As soon as she pointed it out, I saw what I had done. The humor that I had missed only moments before was now apparent, and my anxiety disappeared.
Our plane was soon cleared for takeoff, and by sprinting through the airport in Charlotte; we made our connecting flight, which had been held up too. All of my angst had been for naught. We made it to Charleston and started our training right on time.
As a bonus, I had a great new example to share of how our feelings are created by our thoughts.
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