Ironically, summer travel can be as stressful as your 9-5 but with our expert tips summer travel can feel like a vacation again.
Though no one can can argue with the benefits of being heavily medicated when dealing with the TSA, there has to be a better way to deal with the stresses of the summer travel season. And that’s exactly why we turned to Dina Kaplan for advice. After studying and practicing meditation in India, Kaplan saw the anxiety, panic attacks and high stress levels that had plagued her begin to fall away. Back home, in NYC she founded The Path — a company that teaches ancient meditation techniques in a modern way, making them more accessible for fast-paced urbanites.
Here’s a look at Kaplan’s top five recommendations for staying zen whilst traveling – no Xanax required.
Flights get delayed, boats can be canceled and drivers often don’t show up at the right time. At home we have control over our schedule, but while traveling— it’s impossible. What we can control is our reaction, by choosing to let go. In the meditation world we call this surrender. Stephen Covey tells us: only focus on the things you have control over. If you can’t control something, you can choose to smile and do nothing. Don’t get angry. Stare at your frustration and realize it’s impermanent. Then smile. Pull out your Kindle and enjoy that book you’ve been wanting to read for a year. This is the zen of travel.
Falling into the travel vibe
There’s a rhythm to the best days on a trip. It’s the delight of being on the no-plan plan. What does that mean? You’re open to meeting new people, stumbling into a restaurant you know nothing about, or exploring a neighborhood you’ve never been to before. If you meditate when you travel, you’re more relaxed. You pay attention to what’s around you in this exact moment, rather than focusing only on the destination.
When you meditate, you gain the tools to rise up from arguments and see the bigger picture. Travel can be trying on relationships. It’s also easy to get tired walking around museums or visiting endless monuments. If an argument starts and you don’t meditate you’ll be more inclined to fight back. Instead, realize you’re lucky to share this experience, even this moment, with someone you care about. As Dale Carnegie would say, it’s better to be smart than right.
When you travel you make decisions all day – where to go, when to eat, what to eat, whether to go out at night or to relax. Though everyone in your travel group will have their own agenda, make sure to listen and feel your intuition.
The power to relax
There’s a lot of pressure on a trip, especially if you work a lot and have limited time for vacations but sometimes the best thing to do is nothing. Harness the power to say: I’m good enough as I am. If I want to relax, I can honor that feeling and, for this moment, simply “be” rather than “do.”
Want more advice on making the most of your travels? Read on: