Here's one other fun thing I can recommend - build a plane that you EXPECT to fly like an albatross. If it crashes, and you have to rebuild it, you know what it's like to crash. If you've NEVER crashed before, and you put something in the dirt, that feeling is over and done with. I've killed several planes already, and I feel SO much better now that it's happened.
I even built a flying pig once (and yes, it flew EXACTLY like a pig would - went up, did a little dance about 6 feet up, flew for about 15 seconds, and then spiraled down out of control). Was it meant to soar like a glider, or do acrobatics like a Sukhoi? HECK NO. It was meant to elicit laughs from everyone at the field. And it did JUST that.
My recommendation is to get out, build a Nutball, and try flying it. If it crashes (and it probably will; they're just barely aerodynamic enough to fly), you've gotten your expectation out of how the plane's going to react! It's all fun, and at the end of the day, if you're smiling and laughing about your flight, isn't that what it's about?
Being a little nervous/fearful when approaching a maiden is normal. It will lessen over time but never truly disappear.
The nerves can actually be good as they tend to bring with them a high level of caution! Do your preflight thoroughly, Make sure that the weather/wind is in your favour, make sure the field is as close to ideal as is possible and is as clear as you require.
After doing all of the above you can rest assured that you have done all that you can to ensure that it is capable of flying.
Next if hand launching do not launch at full throttle, (this may cause it to roll and crash due to low airspeed and high "P" factor. If ground take off is used ensure that the plane stays on the ground until it is moving almost as fast as it can and only then do a gentle lift off and climb.
If your nerves actually effect your ability to function get someone else to prove that it flies, or buddy box with someone who has a lot more experience and get them to do the take off and landings for you!
Once you see that the laws of aerodynamics are constant your confidence in them and the planes you fly will improve and the "Nerves \" will decrease markedly.
Do not push yourself to do things ahead of your own internal judgement as this can and almost always does end in disaster!
I maiden a lot of planes for others. I fly others planes sometimes just for the heck of it. I fly one of my planes I have not flown in a while. All of these things make me nervous. Sometimes for no reason I will go to fly a plane I have flown 200 times and that once nerves hit me. Nerves and butt clenching are just part of the experience!
If I remember, I also take out a tried and true plane (usually my tiny trainer) and fly it first, just to warm up (remind the thumbs to behave themselves). If I’ve forgotten, a nice LONG preflight helps that adrenaline rush to subside a bit (and as mentioned, gives you another chance to check cg, controls etc.)
Thanks, tomorrow I will be flying with an old friend that has flown for about 7 years. I am about to try my first fpv wing. Thank you! also I find maidening planes with a friend even if he/she is a little less experienced than you are. as my name states I have quite little funds for aircraft and am currently in the 8th grade and about to start FT stem.
One of the big reasons I'm still in this hobby is that I still get that adrenaline rush, especially on maidens. Pretty much all the time when flying LOS and ALL the time flying FPV I'm at least a little nervous. If that goes away it will probably be time to find a different hobby.