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It’s 3:26 am and I haven’t slept for 36 hours!
Travel can be stressful especially when traveling across time zones. as your internal clock can easily be thrown off balance. You may experience insomnia, fatigue, anxiety, stomach upsets, loss of concentration, irritability & headaches just to name a few symptoms you might not mention on your postcards home.
Dysrhythmia, commonly known as jet lag, occurs when your delicately orchestrated circadian rhythms are disrupted throughout the body. Without any intervention it’s commonly thought to take up to a day per time zone for the body to adjust. The difficulty with adjustment increases with age.
Jet lag is commonly thought to be caused by lack of sleep. Not true! The real cause is lack of light stimulating the brain. Light is a vital nutrient. Without adequate amounts of natural light on a regular basis, we become unbalanced, motivation can suffer and we can become depressed. Traveling can present a problem with regard to receiving adequate amounts of natural light.
As the light ray strikes the eye, the photoreceptor nerves are stimulated and translate light rays into electrical impulses. Some of these impulses travel to the visual cortex where they create visual images that affect motivation. The remainder of these impulses travel to the hypothalamus, the part of the brain controlling the pituitary and nervous system. Light impulses also travel directly to the brainstem, which controls equilibrium, cardiovascular and gastrointestinal systems. The nervous system controls stress, anxiety, reaction speed and many other components which are necessary for peak performance.
The belief has long been held that the eye has only one purpose: vision. We now know that seeing is only one task for the eye and that every cell in the body relies on the light brought in through the eyes. For us to be healthy and function at our optimum we must rely on its ability to transform light into energy. That’s my case for light therapy!
One of the tools I have found most effective as I travel over 100,000 mile a year has been to use a focus trainer, which has various programs of light and binaural sound. It gives me the light I need while traveling and a few days thereafter and the sound waves that put me into and Delta- deep sleep mode on the plane and during the subsequent nights when I may have trouble sleeping. It keeps me awake the day I arrive and if I feel like I am dragging , a 10 minute program wakes me up so I can concentrate. To find out more about focus trainers and how they work go to: www.optimalfocus.com .
Some tips regarding Diet which are very helpful to adjust your body to the new time zone.
Three days before the flight no caffeine or chocolate (except between 3- 4:30 pm)
One day before the flight eat hearty. High protein at breakfast and lunch and high carbohydrates at dinner.
Day of Flight—Get up early and eat light. Breakfast and lunch eat high protein, drink lots of water, pre set watch to arrival time, drink caffeine, and eat chocolate.
On arrival- Eat a large meal to signal to your body to adapt to a new time zone.
On the plane– drink at least 8oz of water per hour. You better sit in an aisle seat!
Get out of your seat at least every hour and stretch arms and legs.
Do the 3 Thumps: http://shiftyourlife.com/2009/new-three-thumps-video/
Do energy yawns to increase circulation to the brain. Massage your jaw joints in a circular motion 3 or 4 times, while yawning.
Hook up for brain balance to relieve tension and support brain synchrony by extending your arms in front of you, crossing left wrist over right, interlocking your fingers as you draw your hands up toward your chest: close your eyes and breathe deeply; holding this position put your tongue to the roof of your mouth and breathe out. Repeat 3 times.
Day of Arrival– do not nap!
Energy Medicine Techniques, which has its basis in Traditional Chinese Medicine, have also been of great help.
During the flight: Tap the ends of your meridians (use a basic “energy psychology” sequence which you can find in our book Shift A Woman Guide to Transformation page 222 or on our free EFT video, a gift to view when you opt into our Newsletter at www.shiftyourlife.com). Tap 3 or 4 times during your travel time. This assists in getting your body adjusted.
Before leaving the airplane, with your shoes off: Open your foot and hand chakras by massaging the tendons between all of your toes and between the fingers of each hand to move the energy. When you are finished massaging each point pull the energy off the toes and fingers individually.
At your destination: an easy exercise to reconnect and feel grounded is to Connect Heaven & Earth.
Start with arms at your sides with your fingers extended on your thighs and take 2 deep breaths. Now inhale slowly and deeply as you lift your palms to the center of your chest. Place your hands together in prayer position as you exhale slowly. Inhale slowly and deeply once again as you lift one arm and your eyes toward heaven with your palm facing up while at the same time extending the other hand down towards earth with your palm down. As you slowly exhale bring your hands back to center in the prayer position. Repeat the above but this time stretching the alternate arm towards heaven and the other toward earth as you inhale slowly (i.e., if you started with your right arm lifted towards heaven, you would now lift the left arm). Visualize yourself gathering energy from the earth and projecting it towards heaven as you stretch. Repeat the sequence 5 times.
If your energy field is still in flight after you land , this will help you ground your chakras to the new geographical location:
- Starting with either hand at your heart, breathe deeply and circle clockwise.
- Continue and expand the circle, so that on the second round you move your hand over your 3rd and 5th chakras; on the third circle (spiraling outward) you pass over your 2nd and 6th chakras, and on the fourth circle you pass over your 1st and 7th chakras.
- Finally make giant circles as high as your hands can reach at the top and touching the ground at the bottom.
As part of the above, or separate from it, if you are feeling a little shaky or unstable at a particular location on your body, take your hand & circle it gently and slowly a few times around your navel and then place your hands at your 2nd and 4th chakras and hold for a few moments or longer if necessary. For more information on chakras and how to find them go to the store on our website.
We all have different energy signatures which respond differently to various techniques Among these tips we hope that you will find a few that are helpful and resonate for you.
Bon Voyage and Use these Tools for Travel!
Marion Ross PhD – The Traveling Shift Doctor
*Check out The Shift Doctors’ books, videos & CDs at the Shift Your Life Site http://shiftyourlife.com/shift-store/ **The Shift Doctors (Tracy Latz, M.D. & Marion Ross, Ph.D.) are available for keynote talks, classes, events or for seminars (1/2 day or up to 2 day) on personal transformation, team-building, motivation, anger management, intuitive development, or collaboration for private groups, conferences, corporations or corporate events. Contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org or find out more about them at www.shiftyourlife.com .