Top 10 tips for managing energy when traveling overseas for business

1. Maintain your rituals as much as you are able. For me that includes running first thing in the morning. Running re-sets my body clock faster than anything else because I have been a 20 year first thing in the morning runner. The day after I arrive I get right back into that routine, even if for shorter runs than I would at home. If going to the gym is your thing, do that. As best as possible keep the morning routine routine. It will really help with jet lag.

2. Insist on time to contemplate and connect with your business. On this trip I did not do this well. I found myself by the 4th day feeling very discombobulated. Because I was scrambling all the time to stay on top of everything I put this aside. To daily connect with your business needs to become non negotiable..even if it is for 15 to 20 minutes.

3. As part of this connecting with your business, sink deep into your desire and intention for the day and for the trip you are currently on.

4. Make time to get good sleep. You are probably not going to get the full sleep you need. Better to say no to the late dinner and get a good sleep. If you have trouble sleeping while traveling, learn meditation…that will help.

5. Eat as well as possible. I take food with me overseas…nuts, really healthy food bars..plus my Lindt Chilli Chocolate. (comfort food) Sometimes you have to work hard to eat well. Go to a grocery store, buy some fresh fruit, or a few carrots or such to snack on. Personally I would rather not eat than eat food that will make me feel like shit.

6. Curtail the evening social events. The evening social events are probably going to be more prevalent than usual. All the temptations are there…eating and drinking too much, staying up late…The cost of doing so can outweigh the pleasure. Draw the line. Think tomorrow….of the next day. Can you afford a fuzzy head?

7. Take time out, especially if you are an introvert. I need quiet time. This can be in a crowded cafe of strangers, but the key point is strangers. Create some non thinking/non doing time if at all possible.

8. Make the flight work for you. Australian’s are some of the best long haul travelers. Anywhere is at least 7 hours. Here is how I do it. The moment you are comfortably seated on your flight, set your watch for the time zone you are traveling to. Then behave as if you are already on that time zone where possible, but at the least with your sleeping. Stay up longer to ensure you are sleeping at least in the night of your arrival destination. Or sleep immediately you get on board if it is already night in your destination. If this is difficult for you, learn to meditate and this will help, as sleeping is a discipline of mind. Make sure you have a sleep mask to block out light. Once you have arrived do your best to match the activities of the destination. Then try to get a good 8 to 10 hours sleep in a quiet room with blackout curtains, followed by your usual morning ritual. It takes me two days to get over a complete switch in time when I do this.

9. Where possible, travel in business class. It matters.

10. See some of the local sights, learn some of the customs, study some of the history of your destination. This brings you into present time and ground you. It also is a powerful bridge for conversations and connections.

 

Photo: Thomas Hawk via Compfight

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