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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 September 20, 2018

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

Being in a hurry all the time drains your energy. Your work and routine life make you feel overwhelmed. Getting caught up in things beyond your control stresses you out…

If you’d like to stay calm and cool in stressful situations, put the following 8 steps into practice:

1. Breathe

The next time you’re faced with a stressful situation that makes you want to hurry, stop what you’re doing for one minute and perform the following steps:

  • Take five deep breaths in and out (your belly should come forward with each inhale).
  • Imagine all that stress leaving your body with each exhale.
  • Smile. Fake it if you have to. It’s pretty hard to stay grumpy with a goofy grin on your face.

Feel free to repeat the above steps every few hours at work or home if you need to.

2. Loosen up

After your breathing session, perform a quick body scan to identify any areas that are tight or tense. Clenched jaw? Rounded shoulders? Anything else that isn’t at ease?

Gently touch or massage any of your body parts that are under tension to encourage total relaxation. It might help to imagine you’re in a place that calms you: a beach, hot tub, or nature trail, for example.

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3. Chew slowly

Slow down at the dinner table if you want to learn to be patient and lose weight. Shoveling your food down as fast as you can is a surefire way to eat more than you need to (and find yourself with a bellyache).

Be a mindful eater who pays attention to the taste, texture, and aroma of every dish. Chew slowly while you try to guess all of the ingredients that were used to prepare your dish.

Chewing slowly will also reduce those dreadful late-night cravings that sneak up on you after work.

4. Let go

Cliche as it sounds, it’s very effective.

The thing that seems like the end of the world right now?

It’s not. Promise.

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Stressing and worrying about the situation you’re in won’t do any good because you’re already in it, so just let it go.

Letting go isn’t easy, so here’s a guide to help you:

21 Things To Do When You Find It Hard To Let Go

5. Enjoy the journey

Focusing on the end result can quickly become exhausting. Chasing a bold, audacious goal that’s going to require a lot of time and patience? Split it into several mini-goals so you’ll have several causes for celebration.

Stop focusing on the negative thoughts. Giving yourself consistent positive feedback will help you grow patience, stay encouraged, and find more joy in the process of achieving your goals.

6. Look at the big picture

The next time you find your stress level skyrocketing, take a deep breath, and ask yourself:

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Will this matter to me…

  • Next week?
  • Next month?
  • Next year?
  • In 10 years?

Hint: No, it won’t.

I bet most of the stuff that stresses you wouldn’t matter the next week, maybe not even the next day.

Stop agonizing over things you can’t control because you’re only hurting yourself.

7. Stop demanding perfection of yourself

You’re not perfect and that’s okay. Show me a person who claims to be perfect and I’ll show you a dirty liar.

Demanding perfection of yourself (or anybody else) will only stress you out because it just isn’t possible.

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8. Practice patience every day

Below are a few easy ways you can practice patience every day, increasing your ability to remain calm and cool in times of stress:

  • The next time you go to the grocery store, get in the longest line.
  • Instead of going through the drive-thru at your bank, go inside.
  • Take a long walk through a secluded park or trail.

Final thoughts

Staying calm in stressful situations is possible, all you need is some daily practice.

Taking deep breaths and eat mindfully are some simple ways to train your brain to be more patient. But changing the way you think of a situation and staying positive are most important in keeping cool whenever you feel overwhelmed and stressful.

Featured photo credit: Brooke Cagle via unsplash.com

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