Tis the season to travel, and we’re here with some tips for keeping you grounded and calm during your next travel experience. You’ve got your bags packed and you’re all checked in for your flight, but have you remembered to pack your sanity? From the second you begin packing your bags, establishing mental clarity while traveling is of the utmost importance. (Don’t for get to check out our tips for intuitive travel!) Often times we are very overwhelmed with emotions while traveling: excitement for the journey, sadness for leaving someone special, anxiety of the airport or plane. These are normal feelings to experience, however it is important to maintain a firm grasp on the reigns while en route to your destination. We’ve showed you some jet-stretching moves that will keep your body loose and comfortable, so now let’s focus on your mind with some breathing techniques, also known as pranayama in the wonderful world of yoga.
Scenario: You go to check in and there’s a problem with your flight reservation.
Solution: Belly breathe very slowly! These things happen and they will fix it – cool your frustration by breathing deeply, beginning at your lower abdomen. Inhale for seven, hold for seven, and exhale for seven. While your breath may be short at first, focusing on the counting in your head and expanding your diaphragm will help you simmer.
Scenario: You’ve boarded the plane and you are on your way…that is until the captain begs your pardon. Your departure has been delayed and you will be sitting on the run way for far too long.
Solution: You are fine, this is no different than being in the air, even though the feeling of being trapped seems exaggerated beyond belief. Alternate nostril breathing is a technique that helps balance your brain and can help bring you toward a meditative state. Using your right hand, cover your right nostril with your right thumb, inhaling through the left nostril. When you are at the peak of your inhale cover both nostrils, tuck your chin and hold your breath for as long as possible. Cover your left nostril with your ring finger and exhale through your right. Repeat.
Scenario: You have finally arrived at your destination, but unfortunately your luggage cannot say the same. You are faced with sticky situation in an international baggage claim.
Solution: Back to those belly breaths, breathe deeply from the lower belly all the way up into your chest, allowing your back to expand more and more with each cycle. This time, we want you to exhale completely through your mouth, getting rid of any stale air that is not helping your situation. Pull your belly far back into your spine really releasing any left overs that have settled in your stomach during transit.
When situations arise that aren’t quite perfect, or the chaos of travel just gets to you, remember that the travel experience is just as much the journey as it is arriving in your destination. Keeping yourself calm will allow you to be aware and think clearly, something that will serve you for a lifetime of travels. Bon Voyage!