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In a study published by Healthline in July 2019, over 65 percent of travelers suffer from anxiety relating to travel.
It’s something that I have suffered from for well over a decade and I travel quite frequently. I am well versed in traveling with groups and by myself. I get anxiety for all of it and although I have overcome much of the issues that I suffered with when my travel anxiety first presented itself, much of has been replaced with new anxiety.
Here are some of the tips that I have used or tried throughout the years to curb my travel anxiety, hopefully some of it will help you as well so that you can travel in peace.
Be honest about your anxiety.
For a long time, I was embarrassed that traveling made me nervous and gave me anxiety. I would work myself up to the point where I would get physically ill. I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t have anything to drink and if it was an early evening or late night flight, it would be miserable because I would fly not only with major anxiety but also starving and parched.
Finally, I got to the point where I would be honest with myself that I was scared. Getting on a plane and traveling across the country scared me, and there was nothing wrong with that. That realization actually helped to curb my anxiety a lot, especially when traveling with other people.
Over the counter drops help me so much. I take this in my everyday life and I take them on every trip we go on and always take them before I get on a plane.
I use a mixture of all of these drops.
The Herb Pharm Anxiety Soother drops are great for everyday but if I need a little something extra I turn to Wish Garden and add their Emotional Ally, Deep Stress and/or Serious Relaxer to my arsenal.
These drops pack a punch for me and I add a vile of each to a small glass of water prior to leaving for the airport. I keep it in a place that is easily accessible on the plane as well if I need it.
If these types of remedies aren’t your thing, consult with your doctor to see if there are other medications that might be more suitable for you. Very Well Mind has a great article that includes some of the prescriptions to help you combat your symptoms.
Bring a comfort item from home.
I used to travel a lot for work and it got lonely to travel all over the country, sometimes for weeks at a time and live out of a hotel. I also get really cold on airplanes. My mom decided to make me a blanket that I could travel with that reminded me of home because she put photos of our dogs on the blanket on one side and kept me warm. If traveling gives you anxiety, you want to be as comfortable as possible when traveling to decrease your anxiety and increase relaxation.
I have my blanket and I love taking it on trips with us. I even put it on the bed in hotels and when I was traveling a lot for work, I would use it on a chair or couch when I was working from my room.
It doesn’t have to be a blanket, it could be a pillow, a pair of socks, a sweatshirt, anything that helps you feel more comfortable when traveling.
Plan For Your Anxiety.
If you know that traveling gives you anxiety, plan for it because that allows you to have or at least try to have more control over it.
If you are planning a trip to a place you have never been, do exhaustive research about it so that you feel more at east with the situation you are entering into.
If you know that flying is what gets you, plan to be at the airport early, have all your travel plans and itineraries printed out and ready to go and go over them multiple times before you head out.
The more prepared you are, the more prepared you will feel and the more likely you are going to be able to relax.
If you are trying to overcome anxiety or figure out what works for you so that you can enjoy travel, over prepare for your trip. Make a list, start packing early, lay everything out, be sure you have everything you need so that you can relax about that aspect and not have to worry about forgetting things.
Lay out your travel outfit the night before you leave so that you know you have everything prepared for that.
Take extra comfort items such as a blanket, a pillow and a good book and comfy socks.
Avoid alcohol before traveling.
A lot of people think that if they have a drink it will calm them prior to a flight or before you get off the plane at your destination but in reality it only clouds your judgement and can increase your anxiety.
Breath in through your nose and out through your mouth.
When I am having an anxiety attack, I close my eyes, or focus on an object (if I can) and breath in three counts through my nose and three counts out through my mouth multiple times. This helps to calm your brain and your heart rate.
Get a Quick Workout In
I have found that if I am feeling anxiety coming on or have an inkling that it might be hiding just beneath the surface, if I do something that makes me happy and is an outlet for me it really helps. Exercise is a major item in my arsenal to combat my anxiety.
Even in the midst of a hardcore anxiety attack, if I am able to get some sort of workout in or meditation practice, it goes a long way to fight my symptoms and let me get back to myself faster. If you have an early morning flight, get up just ten minutes earlier and do a few burpees, go on a brisk walk, do a tabata workout, do something good for your body and your mind will be relieved.
Focus on your breathing during this time to help relax and get your head in a good space. Smarter Travel has a long list of ideas that include controlled breathing to help you fight your anxiety and win.
Those are some of my tips for decreasing your travel anxiety. Traveling is a wonderful adventure and everyone should be able to enjoy their travels. If you suffer from travel anxiety, you are not alone. There are millions more just like you.
Thank you for stopping by and for the love of the mouse, never forget, that it all started with a mouse.
Source: Healthline, Very Well Mind, Smarter Travel)