Airports are getting more and more crowded as people are flying to their desired destinations. Travel season is peaking and so is the stress around it. If this is you, keep reading for tips to ease your own travel stress.
Being a travel lover, I’ve never particularly enjoyed the travel process. Except for my favorite part of course, the airplane ride and being at your final destination. There’s something about being up in the sky and disconnected from the world that’s so therapeutic.
I’m reflecting about travel stress (especially holiday and summer travel) as I’m sitting here at the airport right now headed to visit family and attend some weddings. These last few days were a bit stressful but they were much less stressful than my travel experiences used to be. And it’s because of these travel tips that I was able to experience less stress and more ease.
Try these tips to ease your own travel stress:
Create a Personal Travel Ritual
There are so many moving pieces while traveling that can make it feel chaotic. Having a personal travel ritual can help organize these moving parts to create more flow. A ritual is a set of activities you do in a particular manner. Similar to how a morning ritual is how you do mornings, a travel ritual is essentially “how you do travel.” This could be a set of decisions or the way you decide to travel.
For example, after a stressful experience of last-minute packing, I decided I was going to commit to having my bags packed the night before my trip, even if this meant staying up till 3 am. Because of this decision, every time I travel, I remind myself of this and plan accordingly. Does it always happen perfectly? No, but having the intention helps direct that focus and make ease a possibility.
What do you want to do in your personal travel ritual? What would ease your travel process?
Make space for rest before and after your trip
Traveling can be so exhausting and we often forget to make space for recovery time. This can leave us feeling groggy, moody, and depleted. Traveling creates additional work on top of your regular routine. Planning, shopping, packing, deciding what to wear, getting to the airport on time, making it through security, etc. It’s a process that takes up your time and energy leaving you drained. Not to mention traveling across time zones or at odd times like red-eye flights leaving you feeling out of sorts.
Once I started realizing the travel exhaustion I feel, I started to clear my schedule the day after my trip if I’m able to. This helps me to recover and integrate into my space. When I have a go-go-go schedule after landing it creates more exhaustion and I don’t enjoy my trip or time back as much.
How can you create space for recovery time before and after your trip?
Allow yourself to feel the emotions of the transition
Whether you are traveling for business, leisure, or personal reasons, it can bring up a lot of emotions. Leaving one space and moving into a new space can be disrupting for our need for comfort and safety. This is something I learned the hard way.
Whenever I leave my current space I would notice my sadness and attachment about leaving. And this is even if I wanted to leave! Although I’d have tension and sadness in my body, I would just push through the travel plans. Ignoring my sadness created more stress and tiredness in my body. Now I allow myself to savor the space before I leave, grieve the space I leave, and also make friends with it and say goodbye to it. This might seem silly to some, but it really helped reduce my tension around leaving. I felt more complete rather than grasping on with separation anxiety.
Now, instead of forcing myself through each situation, I allow myself to savor and grieve and also make space for integrating into my new space. This made a HUGE difference in my experience of leaving one space and entering another.
How can you nurture your emotions through the transitions of travel?
These 3 tips have tremendously helped me ease travel stress and help me enjoy my trip more. Allow yourself to try 1 or all 3 of the tips for your next travel plan.
Remember that each of these tips will look different for everyone. The examples I shared are just from one angle and from my own experiences. Try these tips with adding your own sugar and spice to it and find what works for you. It is a discovery process and you can make it like a game. Try different things and enhance and tweak your travel process each time.
And most importantly don’t forget to have FUN!
Aditi helps professionals turn their stress habits into self-care habits. She became a Life Coach & Emotional Wellness Speaker after years of battling with her own depression, burnout, and a half-paralyzed face at age 20 due to stress. It’s her personal mission to reduce emotional suffering in the world and teach wellness tools that were never taught in school. Grab her Stress Less Guide at: aditicreative.com/stressless and follow her on Instagram for more self-care tips at @aditicreative.