Traveling for work can be an exciting change of pace or a regular necessity, depending on the job you take and the company you work for. If you want to do your best on your next business trip, you’ll need to squeeze in some time to maintain your wellness and work-life balance so you can be at your most productive when it’s time to get down to business. Here are 6 tips for maintaining your wellness and work-life balance when you’re traveling for work.
1. Pack Snacks: Whether you’re a nervous airplane eater who doesn’t want to pay for overpriced, unsatisfying airport food or a late night snacker who may not have time to run out to the store once you’ve reached your destination, packing snacks can be essential on a business trip. Packing healthy snacks will help you maintain your wellness, help you feel better, and help you avoid the quick, unhealthy food alternatives when you need food quickly and easily.
2. Download in Advance: Relying on the Wi-Fi at the airport or at your hotel to download material you’ll need for work, audiobooks and music you want to listen to, or something to watch on the plane is never a safe bet. Make time before your trip to download any work essentials and any entertainment you might want for those spare moments at the airport, on the plane, or in your hotel room.
3. Put Spare Airport and Airplane Time to Good Use: Speaking of spare time at the airport and on the airplane, there’s plenty of it! Put this time to good use by doing a little work n advance if that will help you prepare. Or, conversely, if you’re going to be busy with work the whole trip this might be a great time to squeeze in some fun relaxation through a nap on the plane, reading, watching something entertaining, playing a game, or catching up on your side project. Whatever activity gets you the most bang for your buck relaxation wise, try to fit it in when you’re at the airport or on the plane if you know you’ll be busy once you’ve reached your business trip destination.
4. Sleep Routine: If you’re not jumping time zones you won’t have to worry about jet lag, but some people still find it difficult to fall asleep in a hotel room, especially on the first night. Make that easier on yourself by creating a sleep routine and sticking to it. This could involve putting on comfy clothes, using a white noise app, using a sleep mask, relaxing for bed with a calming activity like yoga, and blocking out distracting light so it’s easier to fall asleep. It will take some time and small adjustments to figure out what works best for you but sleeping despite jet lag or falling asleep in an unfamiliar hotel room will become easier once you have an established sleep routine.
5. Make Time for One Fun Thing: This could be as simple as finding one restaurant in the city you’d like to try, checking out the hotel pool, or making time in your hotel room to watch one movie you’ve been meaning to see. As long as you make time on your business trip for one fun thing you’ll feel more balanced. It’s easy to let work consume your thoughts completely when you’re on a business trip but this one break will help you maintain a healthy work-life balance so you can fully dedicate yourself to the work you need to do the rest of the time you’re there.
6. Schedule Skype or Phone Calls: Work trips, particularly when you have to go solo, can be a little lonely. Schedule a Skype or phone call with a friend or family member to help keep yourself tethered to your home life and you’ll feel more balanced, less lonely, and much happier.
Business trips can be rare treats or regular realities, depending on what you do. But a lot of people don’t take the time to maintain their wellness and work-life balance when they travel for work. These 6 tips will help you feel more balanced on your next business trip so you can work smarter, not harder.