Learned to fly as a teen. Flew up until my early twenties and then stopped (did the whole family thing and no longer had the ability to waste the money because I was no longer a young single dumb@$$, got a "real" career that demanded all of my time and then some, etc). A few years ago, I decided to get back into it. Did a flight review and all of that fun stuff, but one problem... My confidence evaporated! That was a few years ago. I've kept my biennial flight reviews more or less current since then, but that's about it - I can't bring myself to fly solo. I do NOT have a fear of flying. A band of goons could break down my door and kidnap me, and if they took me to an airport my first thought would be "hey sweet we're going flying!" I'm pretty much willing to go flying in anything that leaves the ground - hell, I get excited to go on commercial flights, despite the associated suck factors. See, the problem here is that any time I try to kidnap myself and go to the airport for a solo flight, I end up with a totally different mindset. Thoughts begin to race through my mind, like... "what if I have an engine failure after takeoff?" "What if this 40 year old hunk of begging to be beer cans is corroded all to hell from the inside and is going to disintegrate in mid air?" "What if the aileron control cables are held together by two strands of wire?" "How long since the last annual? Did the IA actually look at everything? If he did look at everything, could he actually see anything?? Do the wing attach bolts get looked at? What if fatigue cracks are developing in the wing attach bolts right now?" "When was the last corrosion treatment? Did the corrosion inhibitor actually reach all of the critical areas?" "What if I hit a bird on landing, shattering the windshield and the airplane sits out overnight and it rains, allowing water in the cockpit and thereby destroying the salvage value of the airplane and my renter's insurance isn't enough? Will I get sued into oblivion, lose my house, my wife divorces me because she doesn't want to be married to some poor loser that kills birds with airplanes and then has the pants sued off of him and I end up living under an overpass with alimony payments racking up by the month? Will she hire some goons to kidnap me and beat me up? If so, will they fly me somewhere to do it because that would be pretty sweet..." Ok, sorry to go off on a tangent playing out some of my overactive imagination, but I want to make it clear how my mind works. I feel like the next time I'm up for a flight review I need to find an instructor, and come clean that I have a confidence problem and that needs to be the primary focus of our work. But, I also feel like that with the machismo present in aviation, this would be not only a difficult subject to broach, but I might also hear something that I don't want to hear - and that is that I should just hang it up... which leads to my other concern. So, I guess my questions are: 1. Has anyone here ever felt the same way, and if you did, what did you do to overcome it? From my research on the matter, this seems to be a fairly common mindset of students, but that's to be expected. Licensed pilots are another story, something I've not found much on. 2. Should I just hang it up? A part of me feels like my conservative nature* is a good thing for a pilot to have, but another part of me feels like that p***ies don't belong in the left seat. What do you think? Do I just need to take up getting old and yelling at kids that ride their bicycles too fast down the street? *I'm a very conservative and risk adverse person, but aviating is the riskiest thing I partake in, and it seems to be the one area where my risk aversions go into overdrive.