When I Grow Up: Becoming a Flight Attendant

What does the word flight attendant make you think of? I must confess, I tend to think of that silly movie, View From the Top! Pretty sure that is not what life is like for a flight attendant these day, but why don't we find out now? Stephanie Rhynes is a flight attendant, and I'm so glad she agreed to be featured today!

Becoming a Flight Attendant || MrsRobbinsSparkles.com

As a child, I wanted to be a ____ when I grew up. I wanted to be a singer when I grew up... Really thought seriously of becoming a flight attendant in high school

How close (or far) is your current career from that dream? You could say I'm living the dream! Haha sort of, I do say, "Welcome aboard" in my best sing-song voice

What is your official job title?

Official job title: Flight Attendant

Unofficial job title: Babysitter, trash collector, nurse, fireman, therapist, lavatory and exit director and evacuator... We wear a lot of hats.

What is a typical day like? Haha a typical day. If it's not atypical, then something automatically seems askew. Generally, I fly between 2-4 legs a day in a 3 day trip and about 5-6 trips a month. The flexibility of this career is the reason many people stay and fly up through their 70's (no, really, some flight attendants have 40+ years under their belts - aka "senior mamas". I fly mostly domestic (because only senior mamas get the highly coveted international trips). However, the best perk is the ability to hop on a plane to see friends and family across the country or going someplace fun overseas when time off and vacation allows. My last venture was Germany, but I have a long list of places to see. It's tough to balance work and downtime. Sometimes the last place I want to be after a stretch of 6 days on duty is the airport. Only those of us in the biz understand this dilemma...

How did you end up in this career? After college, I worked in customer service (ticketing, check-in, boarding, etc.) and on the ramp (loading bags/cargo) at a smaller airline. When I tell people I worked on the ramp they usually laugh. Rightfully so - here comes prancing along a cheery, scrawny blonde chick ready to load your mother's meat locker. To this day I wonder, what on earth do people pack?!?!? Loved the people I worked with in OKC and it taught me so much more than I expected. After a year of "ground work" I got hired as a flight attendant. Hello, culture shock. Moved to Denver and started my dream journey. Sadly, that airline had a lot of politics and terrible work rules. Straight reserve (on call 24 hrs with only a set amount of days off) and feast or famine flying = a total stressed out frenzy. Then finally, the big dogs called (the majors; i.e. legacy carriers). Funny enough, it happened at a time when I was most content, hiking with friends and loving Colorado. No joke, got the voicemail after a fun hike with friends. Climb every mountain...

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In retrospect, that removed the creeping giant of interview nerves. On the one hand I was happy where I was, but on the other, this is where I always wanted to be from the get-go. I went in with that attitude of fearless, positive optimism and bam! Welcome to the big leagues!!!

What advice would you give to someone who wants a similar career? To those who aspire to a life in the skies, I would definitely encourage them to go for it! It's an amazing way to see the world, not only through your own eyes, but through others. Just don't go into the interview saying, "I love to travel and I love people!" You have to have interpersonal savvy when it comes to customer service. It's tough up there, and you gotta have true grit along with poise and unfettered grace when a grown man is chewing you out over "HIS" overhead bin space...

Do you have any other career dreams? What do you want to be when you grow up? As far as growing up goes, that never stops. I always want to learn/do/see more. My advice - Do what YOU want to do. At the end of the day, it's your choice and no one else's. Looking back, I can see how everything fell into place. God knows what He's doing. I'm always on the lookout for new opportunities and will follow through as He leads me, but it's important to enjoy the season you're in now, even when it seems like you're in a valley. Keep climbing that mountain!

Thank you so much for telling us about your career as a flight attendant, Stephanie! Keep climbing that mountain :)

Previously on Mrs Robbins Sparkles...