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10 Tips to Travel in Crowded Public Transport

10 Tips to Travel in Crowded Public Transport

For the city dwellers, travelling by public transport is a way of life. Be it the London tube, the Seoul subway, the New York metro or the Mumbai local trains, peak hours are crowded, and navigating through them causes unnecessary stress and fatigue. Here are a few tips that can help in alleviating your woes:

1. Know your transport

It is imperative to intimately understand your desired public transportation system. Usually, there are multiple routes that take you to the desired destination. Traffic on certain routes may vary depending on time of the day and frequency of the transport. Building up such knowledge takes time and detailed study of the routes and timetables. However, in the long run it is the best way to beat the crowds.

2. Move to the Center

Once inside the bus or a train car, move to the center. Standing at or near the entrance is not a good strategy, as people constantly move in those areas, which results in more push and shoves. Moreover, the chance of getting pick-pocketed at the doorways, where the thief can get off the bus or the train easily, is higher. At the centre one is usually safe from such unscrupulous elements.

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3. Hold On

In a crowded bus or train, with no place to sit, find the best standing spot. Make sure it is near a pole or a handle, which can be held on to. Holding on to something not just prevents you from falling over someone in case of unforeseen jerks and pushes, but it also transfers the weight off your legs and reduces the overall fatigue of travel.

4. Do not lean on poles

People have a habit of leaning over the poles in bus and trains. This is not a good idea, as it does not allow your fellow passengers to find a place to hold on to. It is an indicator of poor etiquette, and gets you nasty looks or even an unnecessary fight.

5. Keep your feet and bags off the seats

When the train or bus is less crowded, sometimes people put their feet on the seat or put the baggage on the adjacent empty seat. However, this smacks of poor etiquette. More importantly, soon when the vehicle gets crowded, you start getting nasty looks from your fellow passengers looking for an empty seat. Always keep the feet on the ground, so that others have a clean place to sit on and keep the luggage on the overhead rack or your lap.

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6. Be aware of your surroundings

It is important to be aware of your surroundings, instead of being lost in your thoughts or in your music. This helps in detecting any untoward activity or a person around you. Ensure that no unclaimed baggage is lying around in the overhead racks or below the seats. Being vigilant pays and helps the local security forces to maintain law and order in crowded transports and stations.

7. Be aware of your personal belongings

Keep the luggage you are carrying with you to the minimum. Additionally, keep your wallets, cell phones and other expensive belongings close to your body. Instead, of letting your belongings hang in loose pockets or bags, consciously, be aware that at all times you can feel them against your body. If you have expensive items in the luggage, avoid leaving it on overhead racks. Instead stick them below the seat and between your legs thus making them less accessible.

8. Keep your ticket and fare readily available

Keep the ticket or your fare ready in the pocket. This quickens the boarding process. It also inhibits you from opening the wallet in crowded places, revealing the money and credit cards within. The more you display the money or expensive items on you, the more appealing a target you become for the thieves.

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9. Be courteous

Be polite and courteous to your fellow passengers. Do not jump queues. Try to be accommodative of other people’s needs as much as you can. Apologizing for an unintended push or being grateful for a seat from your fellow passenger helps to build the camaraderie and reduces the stress for everyone involved in the travel.

10. Be clean

The public transport is for us, and it is our responsibility to keep it clean. Avoid spitting, or throwing garbage on the platforms or inside the bus or train. Cover your mouths when sneezing or coughing in a crowded place. It prevents germs from spreading. Finally, if you see wrappers, bottles or other garbage on the seats, make an effort to clean it up. After all, we all like to travel in clean vehicles.

 

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Do you have other interesting tips? I would love to hear about them in the comments.

Featured photo credit: M M via flickr.com

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Science Says Screaming Is Good For You

Science Says Screaming Is Good For You

There are many reasons why people might scream – they’re angry, scared, or in pain (or maybe they’re in a metal band!). Some might say that screaming is bad, but here’s why science says it’s good for you.

“For the first time in the history of psychology there is a way to access feelings, hidden away, in a safe way and thus to reduce human suffering. It is, in essence, the first science of psychotherapy.” — Dr. Arthur Janov

Primal Therapy

Dr. Arthur Janov invented Primal Therapy in the late 1960’s. It is a practice that allows the patient to face their repressed emotions from past trauma head on and let those emotions go. This treatment is intended to cure any mental illness the patient may have that surfaced from this past trauma. In most cases, Primal Therapy has lead Dr. Janov’s patients to scream towards the end of their session, though it was not part of the original procedure. During a group therapy session that was at a standstill, Dr. Janov says that one of his patients, a student he called Danny, told a story that inspired him to implement a technique that he never would have thought of on his own.

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How it Started

“During a lull in our group therapy session, he told us a story about a man named Ortiz who was currently doing an act on the London stage in which he paraded around in diapers drinking bottles of milk. Throughout his number, Ortiz is shouting, ‘Mommy! Daddy! Mommy! Daddy!’ at the top of his lungs. At the end of his act he vomits. Plastic bags are passed out, and the audience is requested to follow suit.”

It doesn’t end there, though. Dr. Janov said that his patient was quite fascinated with that story, and that alone moved him to suggest something even he believed to be a little elementary.

“I asked him to call out, ‘Mommy! Daddy!’ Danny refused, saying that he couldn’t see the sense in such a childish act, and frankly, neither could I. But I persisted, and finally, he gave in. As he began, he became noticeably upset. Suddenly he was writhing on the floor in agony. His breathing was rapid, spasmodic. ‘Mommy! Daddy!’ came out of his mouth almost involuntarily in loud screeches. He appeared to be in a coma or hypnotic state. The writhing gave way to small convulsions, and finally, he released a piercing, deathlike scream that rattled the walls of my office. The entire episode lasted only a few minutes, and neither Danny nor I had any idea what had happened. All he could say afterward was: ‘I made it! I don’t know what, but I can feel.’”

Delving deeper

Dr. Janov says he was baffled for months, but then he decided to experiment with another patient with the same method, which lead to a similar result as before. The patient started out calling “Mommy! Daddy!” then experienced convulsions, heavy breathing, and then eventually screamed. After the session, Dr. Janov says his patient was transformed and became “virtually another human being. He became alert… he seemed to understand himself.”

Although the initial intention of this particular practice wasn’t to get the patient to scream, more than once did his Primal Therapy sessions end with the patient screaming and feeling lighter, revived, and relieved of stresses that were holding them down in life.

Some Methods To Practice Screaming

If you want to try it out for yourself, keep reading!

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  • Step 1: Be Alone — Be alone. If you live in a place that you can’t be alone, it might be a good idea to talk to your family or roommates and explain to them what you’re about to do and make sure they’re okay with it. If you’re good to go, move on to step 2.
  • Step 2: Lie Down — Lie down on a yoga mat on your back and place a pillow underneath your head. If you don’t own a yoga mat, you can use a rug or even a soft blanket.
  • Step 3: Think — Think of things that have hurt you or made you angry. It can be anything from your childhood or even something that happened recently to make yourself cry, if you’re not already crying or upset. You could even scream “Mommy! Daddy!” just like Dr. Janov’s patients did to get yourself started.
  • Step 4: Scream — Don’t hold anything back; cry and scream as loud as you can. You can also pound your fists on the ground, or just lie there and scream at the top of your lungs.

After this, you should return your breathing to a normal and steady pace. You should feel lighter, like a weight has been lifted off of you. If not, you can also try these other methods.

Scream Sing

Scream singing” is referring to what a lot of lead singers in metal or screamo bands will do. I’ve tried it and although I wasn’t very good at it, it was fun and definitely relieved me of any stress I was feeling from before. It usually ends up sounding like a really loud grunt, but nonetheless, it’s considered screaming.

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  • Step 1 — Bear down and make a grunting sound.
  • Step 2 — Hiss like a snake and make sure to do this from your diaphragm (your stomach) for as long as you can.
  • Step 3 — Breathe and push your stomach out for more air when you are belting notes, kind of like you would if you were singing.
  • Step 4 — Try different ways to let out air to control how long the note will last, just make sure not to let out too much air.
  • Step 5 — Distort your voice by pushing air out from your throat, just be careful not to strain yourself.
  • Step 6 — Play around with the pitch of your screams and how wide your mouth is open – the wider your mouth is open, the higher the screams will sound. The narrower or rounder your mouth is (and most likely shaped like an “o”), the lower the screams will sound.
  • Step 7 — Start screaming to metal music. If you’re not a huge metal fan, it’s okay. You don’t have to use this method if you don’t want to.

If you want a more thorough walkthrough of how to scream sing, here’s a good video tutorial. If this method is too strenuous on your vocal chords, stop. Also, make sure to stay hydrated when scream singing and drink lots of water.

Scream into a pillow

Grab a pillow and scream into it. This method is probably the fastest and easiest way to practice screaming. Just make sure to come up for air.

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Always remember to make sure that you’re not going to disturb anyone while practicing any of these methods of screaming. And with that, happy screaming!

Featured photo credit: Sharon Mollerus via flickr.com

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