Pilots: Lets Get Real

Posted by Gienne Van Engelen | 12/6/17 10:30 AM

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How Instagram is there to inspire but sometimes does the opposite

It’s been awhile since I wrote something from my point of view. I feel like I have to share my thoughts and findings on this subject. In this blog I’ll talk about a subject that a lot of #aviators suffer from. Actually, not only #aviators but a lot of people. Do you have this constant pressure or weight on your shoulders that you need to get somewhere, or achieve something? Is that a good thing? Is it alright for you to put a lot of pressure on yourself? Especially in an environment like aviation where seniority is everything and you can get there fast by really hustling & grinding? Do you feel like everything looks perfect on #instagram and you want to achieve that too?  Let's look at these questions a bit deeper and how this links with Instagram, aviation and yourself.

It’s a fact; everything looks better on instagram. Now a days it’s a trend that everybody wants to inspire each other and only shows their good side, the fun days, the best pictures, the time of their lives. But don’t forget. Everybody has hard times too, all those beautiful pictures you see of pilots flying at  30.0000ft while sipping on a nice warm coffee. You don’t see the struggle they had to go through to get there. These kind of pictures create something called FOMO. Which stands for “Fear Of Missing Out”(Check out this great article from one of my favorite writers Mark Mason).

“During the time I studied to become a pilot, I met no one and my social life took a hard hit.” - @Pilotmaria

I sometimes catch myself with FOMO when I am scrolling through Instagram pictures. Even though I am on the right path, It gives me the feeling I had to be there yesterday. Instead of enjoying the whole process of becoming a pilot I sometimes get a bit anxious. That’s not supposed to happen, and I am not supposed to do that to myself. Everybody has their own pace, and journey how to get through flight school. For some people it’s a breeze, for others it can be quite hard. A good, quite funny, depiction of flight school is this meme actually;

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One of my favorite blogs is actually this one that @pilotmaria, probably the biggest #aviator on instagram, wrote. She explains that she has a great job, but it was a real struggle to get there. She writes “I often times make it look like the sky is always blue, roses are red, and the sun is always shining. That has not always been the truth. Flying an airplane requires dedication, patience and sacrifice. During the time I studied to become pilot, I met no one and my social life took a hard hit.” These words really got me as I am experiencing the same thing. I don’t talk to my friends back home as much anymore, even with all this technology. I usually stay home in the weekend to prepare or study or not spend too much money so I can invest more in my training. Even Though I know all my investment will pay-off at least tenfold in the near future it can be quite tough sometimes(Insert FOMO here haha). Basically I am just really focussed on getting my ratings. It’s just study, work & flying for me the past year. And that’s one of the great things about @pilotmaria. She’s honest. But not a lot of people know and see that. But it’s good to know, right? Now when I look up and I see a jet flying by, I don’t only get excited because it’s a jet that’s cruising through the air. But now I also have a lot of respect for those pilots in the cockpit. It’s not an easy road to get there!

Another great example is @Iamthedrizzle. In his podcast with @pilottopilot (listen to it here) he explains the hardships that you have to go through to get that job at the airlines, the grit and persistence you have to have and how fast the industry can change.

Even our own Instagram page, it looks beautiful! All the sunrises, flights across Florida. These are all great, but you don't see the flipside. The instructors that wake up at 5AM to go flying, the students that study hard, put in blood, sweat and hundreds of hours to make their dream come true. Becoming a pilot just doesn’t happen overnight, don’t forget that.

It’s important to not take things too serious, work hard but know when you have to rest up and recharge your batteries.What i’m trying to say is; enjoy YOUR journey to your goal. Don’t compare yourself to others, have fun, learn and be the best pilot you can be. Trust me, you’ll eventually end up where you need to be anyway.

Safe landings & feel free to leave a comment, i'll be happy to help you out with whatever question you might have.

GR

 

 

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