“The pandemic will pass, but now we’re much more mindful of how we travel and can use this opportunity to use travel for good rather than be reckless consumers”
Travelling in a mindful way helps you to relax, slow down and savor all of the wonderful things that life has to offer. Instead of working off a checklist, you’re more likely to take the time to notice what’s around you, enjoying the sights and smells of a place with wonder and curiosity.
As you pay attention to your surroundings, you’ll become more curious. Travelling with an open mind also helps you get to know yourself better.
Here are 10 concrete ways to practice mindfulness while travelling. These tips should help you enjoy the journey even more.
1. Let go of expectations
Sometimes, it’s best to forget what you thought you wanted to find and instead focus on the actual place you’re visiting. You may have had expectations of how your visit will go based on what you’ve seen on social media or TV, but keep in mind that things will be different once you arrive. The places you visit will have their own special qualities that you will learn to appreciate over time. You will have new experiences and focus on just enjoying the experience.
2. Pack light
The idea of traveling light is a great one. But as with everything in life, it’s not an easy task. And once you’ve mastered the art of traveling light, how do you maintain it? The answer is to decide on your essential items and only bring them along. If you’re planning a long-haul flight, think about how much luggage you can really take along. Saving money on baggage fees is always a plus.
It's stressful to have to haul around bags full of stuff just to go one place. Moving from one place to another is so much easier with less luggage. And of course, less baggage means fewer worries.
3. Meet the Locals
Learning about a country’s culture is one of the best things about travelling. It can be incredibly rewarding to travel to a different country and chat with locals about their lives and the history of their country. Just by starting a conversation with someone, you can get to know more about a place’s history and culture.
4. Meditate and recharge for the next day
Living a mindful lifestyle includes meditation. You don’t have to meditate for hours at a time to practice meditation. You can still employ meditation as a way to calm your mind and relax. Focusing on simple meditation techniques every day can put you in a good frame of mind to take on the new adventures ahead.
While you’re travelling you could seek out quiet parks and green spaces to take some walks in. These places allow you to be in the presence of nature without being distracted by it, which allows you to focus on your breathing and the process of meditation.
5. Take Time
Mindfulness is a way of living that involves paying attention to the world and your experiences. It is an awareness tool that allows you to slow down and be present in each moment, savouring it and enjoying it rather than rushing from one point to the next. Do not put a time limit to your adventures. Instead, slow down and get a deeper feel for the place.
6. Practice Zero Waste
Sustainable travel is part of a holistic approach to travel. Sustainable travel means being conscious about how your actions affect the local environment and local communities. There are many ways to become more environmentally conscious, but one important step is to start practicing a zero-waste lifestyle. It can be difficult to go completely zero-waste right off the bat, but starting out on this path is definitely worth it in the end. Make small changes in the choice of items you use everyday, especially when you’re travelling.
7. Practice Gratitude
Studies have shown that practicing gratitude helps you be happier. Being thankful for every day that you get to travel is an especially good idea as it takes you out of your routine and into new experiences Traveling is already a memorable experience. Be thankful for the opportunity to travel, and be grateful you get to have an adventure to places you'd never see otherwise.
8. Watch what you eat
Travelling is a great opportunity to try new foods and experience new dishes. Taste different foods and experience new dishes while abroad. When trying out foods you’ve never had or dishes you can’t find back home, savour the unique tastes on your palate and remember that it is the journey and not the destination that makes the experience so unique.
9. Be Curious
An excellent strategy to enrich your travels is to seek out places in your chosen destination that are less touristy. You’ll find the best adventure of your life if you’re curious and open-minded. You can learn a lot about the destination by asking locals, and you can gain a deep appreciation of the culture by immersing yourself in it.
10. Get some rest
Jet lag is frustrating and unpleasant. especially when you’re on a trip that’s long and far away. It can disrupt your daily routine and sleep patterns. In order to get the most out of your trip, you need to ensure you are getting the right amount of rest.
Mindfulness is a wonderful tool to incorporate into your travels. It promotes clear thinking and a sense of being present. When you stop focusing on the pressures of an itinerary, or how you’ll take the perfect Instagram photo, you free up more time to enjoy and reflect on your trip. Being present and aware of your surroundings allows you to enjoy the moment — and that always makes travel all the more meaningful.