Travelling can lead to a lot of stress because any number of unexpected events can occur. And when some things don’t go according to plan, stress can start building up quickly, and can keep you from enjoying your trip as much as you had hope to. Whether you are travelling for business or vacation, there are steps you can take to mitigate the stress. The following tips can help you reduce travel stress;
1. Plan Ahead
When it comes to travelling, planning ahead is of paramount importance. Failure to plan ahead can cause a lot of unnecessary stress. You should always try to make sure that everything which needs to be sorted in advance, is sorted in advance. This can include things like booking flights, getting travel insurance and looking for accommodation.
When planning ahead, you should also do some research. Research and understand your travel destination’s culture, customs, language and way of life. Find out where your hotel is located, how to get around using the public transportation, the type of currency used, and such other things.
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2. Keep an Open Mind
No matter how well you plan, there’s no travel experience that is absolutely perfect. Therefore, when travelling, it’s essential to have an open mind and be flexible when certain things do not go as planned. Mental flexibility is key to avoiding stress, in fact some major research shows mental flexibility is directly involved in cortisol reduction. Maybe your flight is delayed, your tour is cancelled or it rains. Whichever the case, once you accept that some things might go wrong, you’ll relieve some of the stress, and you might even discover something brand new which you might not have come across if everything had gone as planned.
3. Pack Smart
You can save yourself a lot of stress by packing smart. You should pack the night before you leave, or even earlier, so as to avoid stress of getting rushed. Give yourself time to remember and pack the things you might otherwise forget. You should also consider packing light; the lighter the bag, the easier your travels will be. Note that, there will be times when you’ll misplace, lose, or even have your items stolen, so consider bringing things which are not very valuable. You can leave the expensive jewellery and other sentimental items at home.
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4. Take Care of Your Body
It is easy to neglect the body when travelling. From poor food options, to long flights which leave you stiff and sore, maintaining a healthy lifestyle while traveling can be a real struggle. You should get quality sleep the night before your trip, eat sensibly, avoid alcohol and caffeine, stay well hydrated, stretch or exercise, and remember to regularly wash your hands. If you do these things, your body will accumulate much less cortisol (a stress hormone), and you will feel much better. Sleep in particular is far more important than people think, lack of sleep has some major negative effects on the body.
5. Have the Right Attitude
Even the very best of trips have some moments of worry, anxiety and frustration. Though it might not feel like it at that time, the stressful events will pass. So, rather than thinking of it as a stressful hassle, try to think of it as a challenge to conquer or an adventure. Also, try to focus on the fun and memorable times to help you recognize that your trip was worthwhile in the broader sense.
6. Be Early
Being early can help reduce the stress of finding a parking space, moving through security, checking bags, and such other aspects of travel which are very stressful when you are in a hurry.
7. Utilize Technology
Using technology can benefit you in many ways. Today, there are lots of apps which can help you easily organize your schedule, find local eateries, confirm your attendance, and even schedule meetings. There are also apps which you can use to help you meditate, relax and manage your sleep. You can use such apps to help you de-stress while travelling.