Oh, happy day! I’m finally able to sit down, breathe, and write some posts that I’ve been meaning to for the last few weeks. It feels SO good!
I wanted to start with my traveling tips. I don’t get anxious about being in a plane, but I do get anxious about an emergency popping up when we are not home. Most of these tips will revolve around organization and preparedness. I’ve learned that if I have done these before hand, I feel so much better about leaving home and enjoying my trip as it comes!
Tip #1: Packing List
Start your packing list early! I just kept mine on my phone under the “notes” section. I made a list of things I needed to pack, things I needed to buy, and I planned my outfits for each day so I wouldn’t need to over pack and knew exactly what I needed to bring. This way, I was able to not be stressed about not knowing what to pack and just throwing everything in a bag and going.
If you know exactly what you are packing ahead of time, it will help eliminate the anxiety of “what am I going to forget this trip?”. You also will have ample time to do laundry, go to the store, and remember those small items.
Pro-tip: If you keep the list on your phone it’s also way easier to go back when you are packing up to go back home and not forget anything at your hotel!
Tip #2: TSA Prep
Yeah, we all hate TSA. The Security Check is probably the most anxiety-inducing part of flying anywhere. I hate being shoved like cattle through a line, having to take off my shoes, and deep breathing through the body scan because even though I know I’m good to go, what if they somehow find a knife hiding on my body that I didn’t know about? Or what if I kept something on me that would tick off the alarm and everyone would stare?
See? TSA lines cause anxiety.
I try to avoid as much stress by doing a couple of things. I wear comfy shoes that can slip off and on easily, as well as leggings so I know I don’t have anything in my pockets, or have to take off a belt.
I keep all my liquids in a little baggy close to the top of my bag. I also take a picture of what it looks like so I don’t forget to put anything back in the liquids bag for the way home.
I keep my jacket draped over my carry on so I know not to forget it, but to also only put it on after the check line. On top of that I don’t pack my bag exactly how I want it to be until after the TSA line. I keep everything (laptop included) in the top of my bag so I can grab them, put them in bins, and then re-pack once I get to my gate.
Tip #3: Prepare
Like I said before, I don’t get anxious about flying because I know that the things that go wrong – missed flights or re-routes or turbulence – are normal and have never really bothered me. What I do get anxious about when traveling is what if someone gets hurt or sick?
To combat this, I pack to make sure we are taken care of as best we can. Then when I know I have done what I can to prepare, I take a deep breath and remember that the trips where everything goes wrong tend to be some of the best memories 😉
The first thing I do is find a good bag for my carry on. Because we were walking a lot this trip and needed to pack in layers, I knew I wanted a backpack. I also knew that I wanted a backpack even after the trip as a cute new bag. I found this cute one on Jane.com a few weeks before and knew it was perfect!
It’s adjustable, is big inside, but not too big to where things get lost all the time, and there is a small zipper on the back where I like to keep my keys and phone.
Pro-tip: Bring extra plastic bags! They can help with a lot and are extremely useful when you need something in a flash. And buy snacks before your flight. Everyone should know this already. But in case you don’t, now you do!
The second thing I do to prepare is make sure I have packed a small first aid kit. I love these ones from Johnson & Johnson that you can get at Target for a few dollars!
I also like to keep a small bag of our medicine or emergency medicine. You never know when a bad migraine, allergies, food poisoning, or a food allergy flare up will hit! I found this cute little bag at Target as well in the travel section. It is PERFECT for these items. Make sure you pack lots of tylenol and any prescriptions you will need for your trip – and extra if you can!
In the end, the most important part of traveling is that you are comfortable. If you need to pack more items to be comfortable and relax for your trip – go for it! If this is overkill for you – do less! Do what works best for you. Following these guidelines make me feel less stressed and anxious before a trip.
What are your best travel tips when you travel with anxiety?