Unless I’m in a car, I’m not a good traveller.
I’m not afraid of flying or anything like that. I just feel disconcerted by the whole ‘hurry up and wait’ nature of flying anywhere.
I feel like I’m stuck in the in-between the whole time I am travelling, and the fact that I usually have to head to the airport around 3am never helps. (Such are the travel woes of living on this island – fewer flights and limited departure times.)
So, really, it’s the perfect recipe for a cranky Christine – disturbed sleep, a lack of control over my schedule, feeling crowded, disrupted meal times, limited bathroom access, and an even looser sense of time than usual.
I do my best to minimize how disruptive these things are for me and I do what I can to remember that travelling makes me cranky so I need to be patient with myself and with everyone else.
I think (I hope!) I’ve gotten pretty good at being patient with other people but I sometimes forget about being patient with myself so I often arrive at my destination feeling rumpled, frustrated, and fed up.
But, on a recent trip to Sudbury for a conference, I discovered that I had an unexpected ally in my desire to arrive at my destination a little less frazzled…
My wrist spy! (Content warning: the post at that link is about grief.)
Yep. My Apple watch made a HUGE difference for me in this trip.
The fact that it changed time on its own helped me to *be* in whatever time zone I was in, which helped me feel a little less in-between.
My reminder to take my meds was obviously helpful.
But really, the most useful thing was being able to see that I wasn’t getting my usual movement in – I was sitting too long, my exercise minutes weren’t increasing, and I wasn’t working toward my move goal.
When I was on the plane, those flat numbers inspired me to stretch a little instead of just sitting still. (Yes, I was careful not to disturb my seat mates.)
In airports, I did a little chair yoga, stood up to wait, and did a little extra walking around, just to keep those numbers moving. (Like I’ve said before, I love how my Apple watch helps me to remember that little bits of movement all count…and they add up!)
By the way, if you ever find yourself in need of a way to baffle some burly young men in an airport, I highly recommend chair yoga. They were perfectly nice burly young men and I’m sure the fact that they moved slightly further away from me was merely a coincidence. 😉
As a bonus, my watch also helped me during every day of the conference, reminding me that I needed to stand, reminding me to work toward my move goal, and showing me that I hadn’t gotten my exercise minutes yet.
Continuing to track (and work toward) those things was a wonderfully familiar thing amid the chaos of travel and the fun but out-of-my-usual-routine days of the conference.
Keep up with those three things not only helped anchor me while I was away from home but the fact that I kept moving helped me to feel less tense, less stiff, and more relaxed the whole time.
I didn’t transform into the poster girl for contented travel but I was definitely less cranky.
I’m calling that a victory.