Business trips can be hectic, fast-paced and run on tight schedules.
Good preparation is vital if you’re to reduce the effects of stress and keep an organised, alert mind.
By thinking ahead and preparing well for your trip you’ll not only be doing your health a favour but also your Company, by turning up at your meetings looking refreshed and focused.
Before You Go
Eat Well: Boost your immune system with good nutrition. Start supplementing your diet with extra vitamin C, to help your immune system fight any viruses that might be hanging around.
Alternatively, get more vitamin C from your diet, in the form of red peppers, strawberries, tomatoes, broccoli, citrus fruit and sweet potatoes. Foods that will improve the strength of your immune system include mushrooms, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, oatmeal, green vegetables and garlic.
Be Prepared: Packing a first aid kit might sound like over-caution, but even the smallest of cuts or grazes can be a nuisance without plasters to hand. Essentials should include an assortment of plasters, antiseptic wipes and a tube of antiseptic cream. You might also want to include a few painkillers and aspirin, FOR EMERGENCIES ONLY.
Pack Sun Cream: You may not be heading for the beach, but you d be amazed how many people forget to pack this when heading to hotter climates on business! Make sure you know what factor you need before heading off to the airport. Sunburn really isn t fun and it certainly doesn t look good! Depending on the climate you are heading for, you could need as high as factor 30 on the face and neck.
Don t get stressed: Setting off for a trip on the wrong foot is asking for trouble. Staying calm and focused will allow you to arrive at your destination in one piece without feeling like you have travelled half way across the globe. Start by making sure you have all your important travel documents to hand and get to the airport in good time, to check in, have a meal or snack, and relax before the flight. You could also use this down time to go through work documents or prepare for your meetings.
On the Flight
Try to avoid alcohol. As well as dehydrating your body it can leave you feeling sluggish. Drink plenty of fruit juices or water. Choose still water rather than carbonated, as this will keep you from the bloated, gassy feeling associated with carbonated drinks. Avoid any stimulant such as caffeine as this will only leave you with a false sense of alertness that will soon fade, leaving you more tired than before.
Try to move about regularly on the flight. Just a quick walk up the aisle or circling your ankles around can help improve your circulation and leave you feeling less stifled in your seat.
Another trick is not to change your watch during the flight, so that you stick to your own time zone s sleep patterns. If your watch tells you that it is late then try and get some sleep rather than staying up to watch the in-flight movie. Your body and mind will thank you once you get to your destination.
Packing earplugs and even an eye mask are great ways to ensure that you get some much needed sleep on long-haul flights, to cut out cabin noise and light.
Wear loose fitting clothing and take your shoes off if you can. Otherwise unlace your shoes, to allow for the change in atmospheric pressure, which can make your feet swell. Hardly the best way to start a business trip when your stiff dress shoes are feeling uncomfortable!
Make wise choices about what you eat and drink. Try to avoid too much bread or potatoes and instead stick to protein and vegetables, which will leave you feeling less bloated and more alert. On short flights your airline is likely to offer little more than a bag of peanuts and a drink, so make sure that you have a good meal before the flight, or pack a healthy snack bar and a piece of fruit in your hand luggage to keep you going.
Arriving at your Destination
If you have to jump straight off the plane and head to a meeting then ensure you get some sleep or rest while flying. Otherwise try to give yourself a few hours rest when you get to your hotel or accommodation. A warm shower is a good way to revive you A good workout or swim in the hotel gym can also help to give you a lift. Don t head for the hotel bar or reach for a cup of coffee instead
JET-LAG: It takes about one day per time zone crossed to adjust to local time, so bear this in mind when you arrive at your destination.
Get a good deal of sleep before your journey. It’s also important to rest as much as possible during your flight. Planning to arrive at your destination as near to the time when you normally go to sleep will also help with the adjustment. If you are able to plan your itinerary allow time on arrival for this adjustment.
On arrival at your destination get active as soon as possible and adjust your meals and activities to local time as soon as you can. Exposure to light is also a good way of naturally allowing your body to adjust.
Follow these tips and you might just return from your business trip a little less frazzled!
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