Expert insight

9 tips for more active, mindful and productive business trips

25 April 2018 by Ailon Freedman

How can business travellers be more mindful and productive? Ailon Freedman, founder of The Lotus Exchange, shares his tips. 

You can liken an employee of a company to a cell in the human body: the healthier those cells are, the healthier the organisation is. Business travellers can often feel tired and lethargic, but someone who is present, energetic and activated will be more productive and effective on business trips. Here are some simple tips.

1. Mindfulness is the art of being present in the moment and encourages people to focus their attention. It is useful in any aspect of life, whatever you are doing. If you are more present, you will feel better, have a better memory and relate to others in a more positive way.

2. If you are travelling through different time zones, you can feel disassociated from your surroundings; the best way to feel in the ‘here and now’ is through physical practice. Visit the gym in your hotel or do 20 minutes of yoga in your room using an online tutorial.

3. It can be difficult to motivate yourself while travelling, but physical practice takes discipline. It helps to have an understanding of the concepts beforehand and try to slowly integrate them into your life; exercise and mindfulness will then become part of your routine.

4. If you know you don’t like the way you feel while travelling, plan ahead. Find a 30-minute yoga routine to do, or download a presentation on mindfulness to listen to. Preparation is everything.

5. Make use of the facilities available to you. More and more hotels have gyms and/or exercise channels on TVs in rooms; it’s also becoming more mainstream for hotels to lend yoga mats to guests.

6. Try and find a quiet corner in the airport to do breathing exercises. Avid practitioners like me understand that 15 minutes of relaxing the mind can really help. (See below for a simple breathing exercise.)

7. Whether you download your favourite comedy show on your smart device, or there’s another hobby that you can take with you, find time to have some fun. If you are staying somewhere for a few days, think about how you will spend any personal leisure time.

8. Music is a powerful way to change one’s state of mind. Bring good music along with you on your business trip and don’t be afraid to dance in your hotel room. You will wake up feeling better in the morning.

9. Research where the nearest yoga centre is to your hotel and book yourself a class. If business travellers are equipped with tools to feel better, then organisations could have a very different culture.

Breathing exercise
1. Close your eyes – unless this makes you drowsy, in which case look at the floor or wall.

2. Think of the upper body as a hollow space.

3. Observe whether the ribs expand as you breathe in and contract as you breathe out.

4. If not, try to make that happen.

5. Once your awareness is located in the physical body, try to establish a rhythm to your breath, where inhaling and exhaling last roughly the same amount of time.

6. Go into this process, really observing the duration of each half of the breath.

7. After some time, start to observe the gaps between in breath and out breath. If it’s comfortable for you, let them grow in length.

8. Mindfulness of breathing is at the heart of all meditation/mindfulness activities.

Find out more about The Lotus Exchange and its corporate wellbeing services at www.lotusexchange.com. For more health and wellbeing tips when travelling for meetings, click here.

Interested? Let’s have a chat about your company’s travel, meetings and events objectives - from the stuff that keeps you awake at night, to the everyday experiences of your employees! Call us on 0330 390 0340, or submit the details below, with an idea of the times that suit you for a call.