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How To Prevent Jet Lag Easily

How To Prevent Jet Lag Easily

So, you’ve spent months planning and looking forward to a holiday, only to have some of your precious vacation days impeded by jet lag. More like, jet drag, am I right? (Sorry, I know that was terrible!)

If you want to get the most out of your overseas holiday, try some of these handy tricks to avoid feeling like a zombie when you should be having fun.

1. Prepare Thyself

This will only really work if you have the time and patience to do it. If so, read on!

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In the fortnight leading up to your flight, start moving your eating and sleeping times by an hour or so every few days. Doing this will give your body the chance to slowly adapt to its new time zone.

2. Set Your Watch

Start getting used to the time difference early by setting your watch, clocks and phones to the current time of your destination. It will make it less of a shock once you get there and will hopefully help you to start adapting your sleeping and eating habits earlier.

3. Stay Hydrated

Planes are constantly pumping dry air into their cabins, which will cause you to dehydrate. If this wasn’t already bad enough, dehydration makes jet lag worse. Make sure you drink plenty of water both on the flight and during the days leading up to it. Although you may be tempted by juice, tea and sodas, make sure that water is your primary source of fluids.

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4. Act Like You’re Already There

Regardless of what time it is on your flights, start behaving the way you would if you were at your destination. This shouldn’t be hard to calculate if you already changed your watch or phone settings. If it’s daytime there, try your best to stay awake. Coffee is your friend, so long as you don’t overindulge. If it’s night time, try to sleep, even if no one else is. Invest in some earplugs and an eye mask to aid you in your endeavor. If you have access to individual air conditioning, turn it up because the cold will help you fall asleep faster.

I would also recommend attempting to correlate your meals in the same way, although this may be difficult to match up with serving times on the plane.

5. Use Sleeping Pills…Wisely

If you really have trouble sleeping on a plane it may be worth trying sleeping pills, but do so with caution. They can cause a near-comatose state where your body will not have much, if any, natural movement. This can be dangerous because immobility can lead to fatal blood clots. Be sure to speak to a physician before buying sleeping pills. Also be extra careful to drink plenty of fluids if you do take pills because some are anti-histamine variations that can dehydrate you, thus making jet lag worse.

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6. Avoid Caffeine and Alcohol

I know I said to have a coffee to stay awake if needed, but you must keep it within reason. Having too much will dehydrate you further and also make your body even more confused once you land and have to adapt to the new time. Alcohol is also a bad idea, not only because it dehydrates you further, but its effects are stronger in the atmosphere of a plane. Do you really want to deal with an accidental hangover as well as jet lag? Hell, no!

7. Take a Shower

If you have a chance to take a shower during stop overs, definitely do it. We all know how magical a nice, hot shower can feel, but they’re also genuinely beneficial. It helps to get your muscles and circulation going again, which will make you feel a whole lot better on the next leg of your journey. Many long-haul pilots take showers to combat the general effects of jet lag after a long flight.

8. Get Outside

If you arrive during the day, be sure to get straight outside. Even if you’re feeling tired, getting out and about will help to energize you.

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9. Don’t Go to Bed Immediately

Unless you arrive at night time, avoid going straight to bed. I know that getting some immediate rest is tempting, but if the sun is still shining you need to try and stay awake. Letting yourself drift off will just make it all the more difficult for your body to adapt to the time difference. It will also take longer.

10. Exercise

Once your vacation has officially started, try doing some exercise in the morning and early evening. Working out before you start your day will get your blood flowing and the subsequent endorphins will help you to feel awake and energized. Exercising in the early evening (not right before bed) will also help you feel more tired once it’s time to hit the hay.

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Tegan Jones

Commercial editor for global publications Gizmodo, Kotaku, Lifehacker & Business Insider.

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

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Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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