Zen On A Plane


Zenify (verb) zen-ehh-f-eye

To bring calm and surrender to a most often unsettling and nerve wracking experience; Dropping illusion and seeing life without distortion 



  Okay, okay, so I made up a word...but I feel it is a proper way to describe the process of remaining calm in otherwise stressful situations. One of these situations for some is air travel! I have the pleasure of flying from Los Angeles to New York and back every month. The airport has become an intrinsic part of my life and to keep myself from going postal, I strive to be as mindful as I can from the moment I wake up in the morning till the moment I arrive at my destination; from uber to uber! Without trying, I have created a self-care routine for myself and all the globetrotters and business class professionals, that if applied, is sure to turn any travel turbulence into a peaceful glide! 



What time of the day are you at your best?

  Know thyself! Some people thrive in the morning while others live vicariously under the moonlight! I am most animated in the evenings, so I always book the earliest flight out at 6am. This allows me ample time to pack, shower, call my credit cards, prearrange my uber, lay out my "planewear" and prepare for my trip the evening before when I am at my best, ensuring that all my i's have been dotted and t's have been crossed. The day before travel, I avoid caffeine so that by 9pm I am ready to get a good nights rest so that when my clock goes of at 4am I am not a complete zombie! Being mindful of myself plays an important role in the organization and planning of my trip!



Are you taking that?

  Packing can be stressful, causing anxiety to rear its ugly head before you even step out of your home! I love to create a positive mood when I pack. Pour a glass of wine, put on some 90's Janet and have fun...you are headed out on an adventure! Make packing part of the experience and unless you are going on a maiden voyage across the Atlantic, put away the Rose Dewitt Bukater trunks and pull out a mid sized suit case. Let's be honest, you wear the clothes you feel most comfortable in the most. Certain clothes are like cozy friends: you always want them around. Pack what you know you will wear and perhaps two mono chromatic outfits that can be mixed and matched to suit any occasion. Still scared it's not enough? Find out beforehand if your hotel or Airbnb has laundry facilities. One wash of your entire suitcase will double its wear ability, allowing you to travel much lighter, feel less encumbered and save the hefty fee associated with oversized bags. A zenified luggage is a happy one and that is why I try desperately to limit myself to one carry on and a backpack. Avoiding having to check any luggage saves time and energy!



Navigating the airport?

  To stay in the zen zone I leave for the airport super early. One reason is to factor in that horrid LA traffic and the other is to save me any grief or stress associated with the thought of missing my flight! I have already checked in the night before via the iPhone airline app (which saves time) and because I rarely have to check luggage, I head straight to security which limits my airport experience to one line. Now I have plenty of time to peruse the stores, buy my water and magazines or meditate. I suggest signing-up for your preferred airlines mileage credit card. Most often it includes free passes to the airline club lounge. I keep mine safe in my wallet and if I have a chunk of time to kill I head on over to relax, have a mimosa, eat breakfast, check email and chill before my flight. It truly makes a difference! Another perk you might receive is priority boarding! This allows you to board the flight first so that you are assured overhead compartment space, eliminating the stress of not having enough space for your bags.

Jitters?

  According to the latest YouGov research, a third of people (33%) are slightly uncomfortable flying in an airplane, while 16% are actually afraid of it. Let's face it, since 911 air travel phobias have increased drastically. While safer now to fly than ever before, we all subconsciously fear crashing into the ocean. I recommend 10 minutes of meditation the day before the flight, right before you leave for the airport and again while you wait at the gate. Sitting and breathing through the uncomfortable feelings will help release them and effectively allow you to ground your energy and calm the spirit. If it helps, picture yourself surrounded by a glowing white light and affirm "I am safe and fully protected. All is well in my world!" If you tend to have travel anxiety, I would suggest beginning a self-care practice a week before the travel date. This may include lots of yoga, meditation, massage, reiki treatments, boosting vitamins, green juice and plenty of rest!



Zen On A Plane?

  No snakes here! Now that you made it onto the plane it's time to sit back, relax and enjoy the flight, right? Well, maybe not! I need help in getting me there, so I carry with me what I dub as my " Miles High Zen Pack!" This bag of tricks includes lavender oil (a natural relaxer), Theives oil (protects you from germs and smells like Christmas) ear plugs, an eye mask, black tourmaline stone (for protection) woolen socks (planes tend to be cold) an uplifting book of proverbs, vitamin c drops, gum (for popping ears) and a travel toothbrush/paste. I also have with me two or three guided meditations which I have selected and downloaded to my phone, a big bottle of water and if applicable, any over the counter or prescribed anxiety medication or sleep aid. I am fully armed and ready to combat any discomfort felt while in the air because I mindfully planned for it. Most often I fall asleep and wake up in time for landing but If you are a non-sleeper, you must be prepared to occupy your time for however long the flight is. Bring a journal, a great book, movie ideas or plan to complete the tasks that you have been putting off...you have the time! When it comes to food I suggest bringing your own unless you are in first class... make way for the sundae bar are hot chocolate chip cookies!

I wish you all well as you fly the heavenly skies and remember, travel is a luxury and a fortune! Whether for work or pleasure, being grateful for the experience is the perfect method in zenifying any moment in time, so if you are stressed lay back and count your blessings



Author:
James Bene
Spiritual Influencer and owner
of Bene Mudra Wellness
www.benemudra.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/benemudrawellness

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