May is mental health awareness month, and even though we’re planning a trip does not mean we should be taking a vacation from our mental health. This is true whether you are booking a business or leisure trip (or both!). I have put together 3 helpful ways to stay sane when you travel in the post-vaccine world.
1. Put together a travel kit. First, the essentials for overall health: a body thermometer, essential oils for your body and/or for aromatherapy, sanitizing wipes, and of course, any medication that you will need. Take a small notebook or journal to record your experiences and feelings at the end of the day. Journaling is a great grounding exercise.
Then, think about what is unique to you. If it will help, bring a couple of small mementos of home with you, such as a framed picture of loved ones to put next to your bed, or certain decorative items that will make your accommodations seem ‘homier.’ Download your favorite podcasts, music, or whatever you like to listen to.
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2. Practice de-stressing techniques. This can be a simple, 10-minute meditation when you first wake in the morning, or visualization exercises to maintain focus, or a hotel massage. Why not book a spa day? It will rest and rejuvenate you for whatever comes next during your trip. Treat yourself.
Additionally, make plans to check in with loved ones back home. It will help ground you, particularly if you are in unfamiliar territory. If traveling internationally, make sure you have the right phone plan if you are calling or texting.
Lastly, research your destination before your trip so that you have a good idea of how to get around, and where to go in case of an emergency, medical or otherwise. Purchase travel insurance (it doesn’t cost very much!) This will give you peace of mind once you get there.
3. Keep to your health and wellness routine before, during, and after travel. Most of us tend to toss our daily routines out the window when we’re traveling. This is a big no-no! It’s important to keep up with your self-care throughout the process. Make sure you exercise and get good rest before you get on that flight. Drink plenty of water and meditate during the flight, train ride, etc.
Then when you arrive at your destination, make sure you get a good amount of exercise at least every other day, and eat well! If this is a leisure trip, try not to cram a bunch of activities into each day. Carve out chunks of time for downtime (for getting that massage!) and just hanging out on the beach or by the pool.
Some people nowadays travel with companion animals to minimize stress and anxiety. If you’re one of them, make sure you familiarize yourself with your airline and hotel’s policies regarding your pet.
Are you ready to stay sane throughout your next trip? Sign up for my webinar on May 12. Get strategies for improving mental wellbeing at home, at work or wherever you are, and more. See you there!