The hustle and bustle of planes, trains, and automobiles can be exhilarating, nerve-wracking, and sometimes exhausting. Being out of your own comfort zone, removed from your normalcy, thrown into different time-zones, cultures, new situations, language barriers….the list goes on and on! I personally embrace the opportunity to go beyond what I am used to and embrace the awesome change travel brings. It can be an adjustment though and let’s be honest, doesn’t always run smoothly.
Stress doesn’t need to take over your trip and throughout the years, I’ve learned to unpack the things I don’t need to carry with me when I travel for a healthier, calmer, more mindful journey. Before you even begin the first step of travel, here are a few things that I’ve found help me find calm while traveling.
When the body gets stressed, it tends to tense up and your breathe can become shallow and erratic. Breathing deeply relaxes your muscles and releases tension, allowing oxygen flood your cells. This will calm you and put you in a relaxed state for your journey. Anytime I feel a bit stressed while traveling, or even after I arrive at my destination, I mindfully check-in on my breathe and take a few moments to take a few deep breathes.
Prepare the Day Before
This may sound obvious, but giving yourself at least 24 hours to set aside the things you’ll need on your trip will make the beginning of the journey more enjoyable. I set out my liquids, headphones, water bottle, any books/magazines I’m bringing and light coat out the night before, so I don’t have to rush around on my travel day. Mike often underestimates the time it will take to get out the door, so preparing beforehand makes exiting a breeze!
Don’t stress about Unknowns
Traveling to a new place will mean you’ll be learning as you go. This is ok! Having everything figured out immediately isn’t realistic and honestly, takes the fun out of exploration! Yes, it can be unnerving to be in the dark about things in a foreign place, but people are generally pretty kind, so don’t be afraid to ask them questions. And discovering new things is half the fun! Don’t worry if you don’t have dinner reservations, are unsure of where the grocery store is, or can’t read the road signs. Do some research beforehand, then enjoy. Stressing about that which you don’t know, before you get a chance to face it, is a waste of energy.
Be Kind & Positive
When you’re in a new place, not completely sure of things, it’s easy to loose your temper, snap at each other, even get in full-blown arguments. Mike and I are usually travel beautifully together, but there is an occasion where foreign road signs bring out the beast in us and snippiness occurs. If I’ve learned anything in my years of traveling, it’s there’s no need to talk to each other in a nasty tone. You will figure whatever it is you’re squawking about, out. You will arrive at your destination, figure out how to get back to your hotel, find a pharmacy to pick up all the crap you forgot to pack….and you could embark on that journey with an angry mindset or a positive one and make it an adventure. Life works out when we are kind to each other, so travel happy.