The Grounded Traveler
I've been traveling a lot recently, as many of you know, and it has been brilliant! Truly I can't complain and I am grateful every day as it is something I have always wanted to be part of my life and my work, and feel so blessed that it is all now manifesting. However, the truth of it is that it can be a little ungrounding at times. Not only are you not at home and sleeping in your own bed, but living out of a suitcase, a lack of structure and the actual traveling itself can leave me (and maybe you too) feeling a bit 'off'. There always seems to be something unnatural about flying through the air in a plane at ridiculous speeds, to then step off in a new climate, new environment, new time zone.. wow no wonder our bodies and minds get a little confused!
So from my many years of moving around I have come up with a few little steps that helps me along the way, and may help you too..
Tips For The Grounded Traveler
Stay Hydrated - It's tempting to reach for the coffee and sugar, but flying is already extremely dehydrating so I ALWAYS board a plane with at least one big bottles of water (and if I can't find a big one at the airport I buy 2/3 small ones) I know it can be heavy to carry but you will feel a million times better when you land! Oh and go for an aisle seat, with the extra fluid you may need a few extra pit stops to the toilet!
Move - Make sure you move around when flying, it really is so important. I recommend getting up for walks and standing at the back of the plane to have a good stretch. At your seat you can move your ankles in circles to help blood flow, and as much as we don't like to be a wriggler and annoy the passengers next to us, a few little adjustments now and then will help circulation and posture.
Travel Mat - The best investment you can make is a travel mat, it folds into your suitcase so it super easy to travel with and it's light. I have the Manduka One, but most mat brands offer them now. And then once you have one.. use it! The first thing you should do when you get to your hotel room and unpack, is get on your mat, even if it's just for a few minutes to stretch out and shake off the plane journey. You can buy one at www.yogamatters.com/manduka-eko-superlite-travel-mat
Grounding poses -If you're feeling spacey, jet lagged or have that 'plane feeling' then get on your travel mat and do some grounding poses. Asana such as standing poses (Warrior II, Trikonasa) and some seated poses & hip openers (Wide Legged Seated Forward Fold, Pigeon Pose and Supine Twists) will help ground you, leaving you feeling more centered and connected to your new environment.
Sleep with natural light - Let the natural light wake you up to help your body clock adjust. As wonderful as it is to have black out blinds in hotel rooms, it won't help that jet lag at all. So open those blinds and let the suns shine in, it's easy and very effective.
Get Outside - When I arrive somewhere new, the first thing I like to do in the morning is go for a run. It gets me out into the fresh air, I can check out the area I'm in, find the local cafes etc and gather by bearings, and the grounding running motion helps me ground into my day. If running isn't your thing then go for a nice brisk walk and take in your new temporary home.