Whether or not we enjoy all aspects of international travel, it is undoubtedly an experience we are able to partake of more easily than ever before. As a result we seem to do more of it – whether it be for personal enjoyment or business commitments.
And yet it is not without its challenges. In fact it is one of the most demanding experiences on the body. To be in that pressurised tin can at 35,000 feet, travelling through different time zones and subjected to dehydration and recycled air takes its toll on our bodies. This is why we experience jet-lag. It is why we arrive at our destination, at best feeling jaded or at worst, exhausted. Our body’s natural circadian rhythms are disrupted and our digestion is pulled out of balance. We were not designed to eat at 35,000 feet!
When I learned to meditate I was flying A LOT – mainly from Sydney, Australia to the States or Europe. They were looong trips and the expectation was that I would land, race to my hotel, have a shower and then within an hour be turning up to some meeting or presentation. I would then fly home and do the same thing – arriving on the red eye, racing home to drop my bags, shower and head into the office to try and catch up on everything that had happened while I was away. No surprises that after a couple of years of this I was feeling exhausted. I was regularly coming down with a cold and I was propping myself up with too many cups of caffeine and sugar related boosters. And I looked (and felt) ten years older than I was.
Thankfully meditation changed all that. Because Vedic Meditation is so portable I was able to meditate throughout the flight – in fact more than the normal twice a day meditation dose is allowed when traveling long haul.
At last I could get good rest while I was travelling, plus I was sleeping better.
One of our students wrote to us recently to share the life-changing effect meditation was having for him. He is someone who flies long haul every week as his recent Facebook status confirms: …gearing up for a bit of a travel sprint (NYC today, Amsterdam Tuesday, London Wednesday, back to NYC Thursday). Also as a senior corporate lawyer he is expected to be on form when he arrives. Here is what he had to say about meditation and jet-lag:
“As someone who lives abroad with a travel intensive job, I find myself doing a lot of long haul travel. In order to regulate my sleep during and after trips, I was very reliant on sleeping pills and caffeine.
With meditation I find that I feel virtually no effects of jet lag and have no need for depressants or stimulants. As a result I find myself with more energy than I can remember both during and after travel.”