It may seem like a business trip is the worst possible time to try to unwind. After all, you’re dealing with the headaches of driving or flying, sleeping in a strange bed and are away from all of your routines and comforts. To top it all off, you’re trying to get some serious work done! It’s enough to stress anyone out.
However, if you’re a frequent business traveler, you’ve got to find a way to lessen the stress, or your health will suffer. Check out these tips to relax, unwind, and maybe even enjoy yourself on your next business trip.
If you don’t have the things you need with you (to work, sleep, work out, etc.) on your travels, you’re going to be stressed from the start. Make sure to plan ahead for your trip: dry clean your suit, charge your iPad, and put new batteries in that white noise machine you can’t sleep without. Then, pack your bags well in advance of your departure. You’ll feel much less stressed than if you throw a bag together 10 minutes before leaving for the airport.
Make use of corporate travel resources
Your company pays for these services for a reason! They really do save you — the traveler — significant amounts of time and money. Let them handle the details like plane tickets, car rentals, and hotel bookings while you stay focused on preparing for the “business” part of business travel.
Whenever possible, get work done in advance
If you know you have a hard time focusing on work when you’re on a cramped airplane or in unfamiliar settings, then do your best to get a good chunk of your work done in advance. Scrambling to meet a work deadline while dealing with hotel wi-fi outages is the opposite of relaxing. And by working ahead, you won’t be stressing on your trip about your catch-up list growing longer and longer.
Meet up with friends
Do you have non-business acquaintances or friends in your destination city? Make plans to meet them for coffee, drinks or a bite to eat! Having social experiences where you can “switch off” from work mode is a great way to decrease stress anytime, but it’s especially helpful when you’re traveling.
Make use of hotel and airport amenities
Does your airport have a massage area? Or does the hotel have a spa, hot tub, swimming pool, workout area or lounge? Use it! Choose whatever activity makes you feel the most relaxed, whether that’s getting a massage or swimming a few leisurely laps.
Practice mindfulness and focus on the positives
Inevitably, something will go wrong on your trip. It’s practically a law of nature. But if you spend your time anticipating potential problems and stewing about them if they do happen, you’ll be miserable 24/7! The key is to focus on the positive things and let any issues roll off your back. Try to stay in the moment instead of worrying about the future, and when stressful things do happen, remember to breathe…and then call your travel management company!