Imagine traveling to a destination with the anticipation of “chillin’ out maxin’ relaxin’ all cool” and BOOM! Your sleep schedule is nonexistent.
Who wants to waste a vacation, time or money because their internal clock wants to play games with their mind – NOBODY!
Wouldn’t it be amazing to look the universal timekeeper in the face and tell him, “I’m reclaiming my time!” Lucky for you, your travel bestie is here to help you preserve your time and energy on your next long haul flight. Here are 8 ways to help you stop jetlag from ruining your trip.
WHAT IS JETLAG?
If you’ve ever traveled a significant distance (enough to switch time zones) then you may be familiar with desynchronosis. No? Oh ok, don’t worry, I haven’t either. But I’m sure you have heard of jetlag.
Jetlag is the travel-savvy term for the involuntary ailment that plagues many explorers. It often causes wandarlusters to sleep during the day and/or stay awake at night.
It’s sort of like that feeling you get when you are in your deepest sleep state and someone subtly wakes you up. That state that you go into where your mind is scrambling, your eyes are fighting to stay open and your body feels like blah! That’s jetlag!
If hangovers are hell, jetlag is the Devil. Either way, both are bad and I want no parts.
Learning to stop jetlag is pretty simple in theory but takes some planning and preparation. As you possibly can imagine, jetlag has a lot to do with the mind. In truth, your body simply thinks that you are in one time zone when you are physically in another. So, take the time prior to flying to do a little switcheroo on your brain.
- CHANGE YOUR WATCH
- To help prepare yourself for the upcoming switch is to change the time on your watch to the destination time.
2. CHECK YOUR FLIGHT DETAILS
- Confirming what time you will arrive at your destination prior to flying can give you an estimate of how you should manage your sleep in transit and upon arrival.
3. BUY MELATONIN
- Melatonin, a natural sleep aid, is often suggested for travelers taking long hauls. It can also be helpful for those fliers who want to sleep once they have deboarded and settled in. (This will be helpful later in the article)
Planning out how you will play the trickery game on your mind can be very difficult when you are on a longer flight. It is easy to sleep when all of the window shades and lights are down and it is a pain to fight to sleep when there is a lot of action happening on the flight. Neither of these are a good reciepe to stop jetlag when you want to do the opposite. But, it is important to take the appropriate steps to keep you ahead of the game.
4. STAY AWAKE
- This tip is solely depending upon your arrival time. If you are flying to a destination where it will be night or sleeping hours, you should stay awake as long as you can so that your body is ready for sleep when you arrive. Once you wake up your body will adjust to the new time.
5. GO TO SLEEP
- Yup, I know I literally just told you the opposite above but just hear me out. Sleeping on the plane gives your body rest and allows you to function when you land, if the time allows. Just like tip 4, this tip depends on your arrival time. If you know that you will land at your destination in the morning then you should do whatever is necessary to sleep prior.
6. STAY HYDRATED
- Now, although drinking tons of water on a plane probably isn’t the best idea, it is very important to stay hydrated. Lack of nutrients albiet in the form of food or drink makes your body want to shut down. Staying hydrated gives you the full functionality of body and most importantly, your brain.
Once you have deboarded your plane, gone through the hassles of security, and searched tirelessly for that perfect uber driver you may be in the mood to turn up on life or crash on the couch. Whatever you feel IGNORE IT! At this point, the best way to stop jetlag is to go by the new time zone.
7. STAY AWAKE UNTIL SLEEPING HOURS
- It is important that you force your body into the schedule that you want it to be on. By staying awake and sleeping when the Earth’s clock insist, you shift your brain into the new time.
8. TAKE IT EASY
- If time permits, take things slow the first few day or so at your new destination. You body takes lots of work to keep it functioning correctly so don’t put it through more than it has to. After all, you did just get off of a long flight. It’s ok to slow down and give yourself a chance to acclaimate.
Travel can be the most adeventurous of experiences. Travel can also be a big pain in the a$$ if you let it. The inability to control the involuntary lack of sleep can drive even the most expert of travelers nuts. And the unwarranted sleepy spells that have been granted to all of us can tear you down just as quickly. But why ruin your trip because of jetlag? You shouldn’t. Use these 8 helpful tips to stop jet lag and get ready to enjoy your next trip.
Do you often experience jetlag? Have you tried these tips? Have they worked? Do you have other helpful tips? Share your experience in the comments.
Until next time,
TAKE THE WORLD!