Somewhere amongst your travel experiences you’ve probably run into a delayed/cancelled flight or a hotel that has had no record of your reservation. Immediately, your nervous system kicks in by releasing a flood of stress hormones including adrenaline and cortisol. Your heart pounds faster, muscles tighten, blood pressure rises and your breath quickens. These are physical responses to a stressful situation. These are responses that you do not want to be burdened by while on vacation.
Although stress is a normal part of life, we can deal with it in a positive way instead of allowing its negative powers to take over our physical body and make us feel out of control.
In order to confront a stressful situation and be able to manage it properly, you can do the following:
- Take charge of your thoughts, emotions, and environment – By feeling more in control of a situation, the physical negative effects (like high blood pressure) of stress are reduced.
- 2. Breathe Deeply – You cannot completely eliminate stress from your life, however by learning to relax with deep breathing techniques, you can learn to activate your body’s relaxation response. If these techniques are practiced regularly, your everyday stress level as well as your reaction to a stressful situation will decrease.
For quick stress relief, it is important to recognize the impact of stress and to stay under control when you begin to feel those physical symptoms. Sensory stress-reducing techniques are powerful tools to remain in control and clear minded when you’re confronted with a stressful situation.
If you know that you are someone who does not react well to stressful situation, practice the above techniques to ensure your vacation time remains low-stress and relaxed.
Gillian Johnson, BA CSCS