What is Clear-Air Turbulence?
Clear-air Turbulence (CAT) is an aviation term defined as, “the turbulent movement of air masses in the absence of any visual clues, such as clouds, and is caused when bodies of air moving at widely different speeds meet.”
As a pilot, I feel the title serves nicely as a metaphor for life. Much like CAT, I believe many of us deal with problems the rest of us can’t see – such as self-doubt, depression and anxiety – yet the turbulence we feel is very real.
This blog intends to explore these issues and look at what strategies, if any, one might use to help deal with the CAT we all experience at work and everyday life.
More than coping strategies however, I also want to explore the question of self-improvement. How to love the good times as much as cope with the difficult. To really make sure I enjoy the ride when the air is smooth…
Can you tell us a bit more?
I view this blog as a therapeutic, creative, safe space, if you will, in which I can come to collect my thoughts and feelings on a wide range of topics. One in which I not only get to practice my limited skills as a writer, but also use it to work out where it is I’m trying to go, and how I can get there.
Ultimately it’s another selfish self-help website centred around asking how I can be better. Whether that’s a better father or husband, writer or artist, aviator or professional, environmentalist or overall human being.
While I’ve left it open to you the reader, please feel free to ignore my random ramblings. However if it does exceed my limited expectations and serve as some sort of inspiration, or even entertainment, then great! Should you also feel the need to add any comments, or simply seek further advice, then please don’t hesitate to write a remark or get in touch.
I should also say what I really want to do is start a dialogue. To interact with you the reader. Get your thoughts and feelings on the things I share so that we may help one another in some small way. Starting a dialogue and affecting change however small would a dream. In the end I believe helping others can only help myself.
Who are you?
I thought long and hard about whether I should disclose my identity on this blog. For a number of reasons, for the time being at least, I’ve decided not to. Chief among them is the very personal nature of the things I want to write about, namely depression and anxiety, and specifically about dealing with those problems in everyday life and at work (which is, sadly, very much a taboo subject in the realm of aviation!).
Of course I understand, to have the biggest impact possible, I ought to be courageous and put name next to ink, however this simply isn’t a risk I’m currently willing to take. Like many industries, the mention of problems such as depression and anxiety in aviation, despite the crucial need to talk about them, would be career suicide.
One day, as a promise to you fine readers, I will disclose my identity and put my real name next to writing. In the interim however, so long as piloting pays the bills, I won’t. Should the world of aviation move forward and really start to address the issues of mental health maybe, just maybe, we’ll all be allowed to talk openly about these issues without the fear of losing ones career. Currently, sadly, this is just a dream.
So who am I? Well I’m a commercial airline pilot living out of Hong Kong with a particular love for family life, flying aeroplanes, traveling the world, improving the self and writing poorly. For lack of anything better that I can think, you can call me AP. I hope you enjoy, or better yet, I hope you can help.