If you’re always wound up, how do you wind down? That’s the question I always get as a travel enthusiast, because I seem difficult to pin down for most people.
The truth is that I’m an easy-going person, and health is always on my mind when I’m journeying. The stress of making a flight or fitting in everything on the to-do list is still challenging at times, but the best medicine the wanderlust lifestyle has given me is to let the wind carry you.
So, if you want to travel but the pressure makes you nuts, I’m here with a few tips to help you keep your balance on the go, whether that’s on water or stuck in a security check line.
Don’t Stress Layovers: Layering is Awesome
Yes, this is me trying to be clever, but there’s truth here: Whether you’re stuck in layover or rushing to get into heels for a fancy dinner after having a tour at a muddy farm, layering is awesome.
I never knew how to properly layer before I got into the swing of traveling regularly. I thought that layering was tying a sweater around your waist or wearing a tank underneath a baggy shirt. That’s a good primer, but layering is an art form that will save you from weather and other worries.
Keep statement pieces to a minimum and choose classic styles over trends. I love my tank tops, but a pair of black skinny jeans or a black tube top dress can dress any look up or down stat. Scarves are stylish but also shield you from the elements. Creating a capsule wardrobe has informed my packing and abilities to layer, transforming five items of clothes into multiple outfits in a pinch.
Hangry Traveling is Fun for No One
Sometimes, I think that angry people on trains or airplanes are most just hungry folks who need some nourishment. “Here, have some chocolate,” I’d love to say, but I haven’t dared volunteer my sacred chocolate to a stranger yet, because I think I look like the weirdo trying to get someone to take my questionable candy.
Start by keeping yourself properly nourished while on the go. Trail mix isn’t just for the trail, and that fake instant coffee that comes in one serving does the trick for sleep-deprived crankiness. Dried fruit, such as organic fruit roles or banana chips, are a healthy, sugary and crunchy option to fill the hanger-hunger void in your gut until proper sustenance can be found.
Honestly, eating a big, properly balanced breakfast has been the best thing to see me through a busy day. A cinnamon flavored candy helps perk up my mood as a treat, and I always have water on me.
Stress slides more quickly off the shoulders when you stop talking about it, when you stop flinching and grinding your teeth. Let your mind and body listen to your environment.
Listen to the hum of the plane or the clink of ice in your cocktail. You missed the bus — so what! Take in the cacophony of a busy street and notice the line of people at a street vendor. Get in the line. Wait. Make conversation, and then mindfully listen to what others have to say, as well as what the surroundings are telling you.
While you’re listening, you may get an unforgettable tip about a new place to check out or a better way to get to your next destination. Your environment will provide. You just have to open yourself up to your surroundings, and let your roots sink in to where you are in the moment.
Many of my problems have been solved simply by listening, whether to facts or letting myself be distracted by something colorful in the distance. Rather than be in pieces, let the pieces give you peace in a time of stress.
Travel well, by making the material things less important. Don’t focus on getting from point A to point B. Focus on the journey, and nourish your mind, body and spirit as you travel often.
Staying healthy on the go means checking in with yourself first and frequently, letting all parts of yourself listen and take in the beauty of the world around and within you.