I have struggled all last week with trying to find my rhythm with my sleep/wake patterns but to no avail. By mid week, I pretty much decided to just sleep whenever I felt I had to so I didn’t end up with a headache or sleepyhead syndrome. I think I am finally back on track today – I’ve managed to wake up by sunrise to head out for my usual morning walk, have breakfast and shower, and started out with some client emails and blog posts. So far, I am feeling good and hope I have finally made it to my regular routine.
- Force yourself onto final destination time zone soon as you get on the aircraft or even a day before in preparation. This one sounds easier said than done. I’ve never heard of this before but I guess it is a good way to get your body clock ready for what’s to come.
- No alcohol, coffee or medication for the journey. I am usually so fast asleep the only reason I get up is because I am hungry and have to request a snack. So none of these for me inflight but if it works for you by avoiding these, go for it.
- Be mindful of what you consume for your meals on the flight. Eating foods that are incompatible with your typical diet might leave you feeling uncomfortable and unable to rest/sleep in which case you end up spending your journey feeling tense and stressed. If you have to request a special meal, do it before you travel. Though you might be tempted to enjoy what the crew serves on an international route, always remember that you will be paying for the consequences later if something doesn’t suit your tummy. If it helps, carry some packaged snacks with you that you know for sure you like and can turn to should the crew be unable to accommodate your request.
- Stay awake as much as possible so you are dead tired when you land and have to nap it off. This one’s a first- not sure I’d survive being awake through international connections. I hate watching TV, find space too cramped to work and can only read or listen to music for that long before I fall asleep or want to eat. I’d love to hear from you if you have ever tried this.
- Time your rest for the time of your landing. This one makes sense to me but sounds like way too much planning. Basically, the idea is to have equal bouts of wake time and sleep time to be either wide awake for when you land in day time at your destination or be ready to hit the bed when you land at night at your final stop. This one I might actually try on a shorter international route and see how I fare.