1. Get an overnight flight if you can.
First things first: Make it a priority to arrange your travel so you can adjust as effortlessly as possible to a new timezone. The best method is to take an overnight flight so you can get some rest and keep a regularly regular sleep schedule. Take a sleep mask, a chilled-out playlist, and ask for a calming, decaffeinated tea to get you in the mood.
2. Work ahead.
Plan ahead to cut yourself some slack upon your arrival. To stay on schedule and keep from piling on to your holiday time and energy, have your ride from the airport pre-booked and itinerary fully set. If you’re returning to work, make sure you’ve started ahead on whatever tasks are expected of you. Even putting aside 15 minutes per day to work ahead during your trip can cut you hours of slack when you first get home.
3. Start your day by rinsing with an invigorating shower gel or facewash.
Whether you’re fresh off the plane or it’s the dreaded morning after with no sleep, try jump starting your energy level by using a fresh, invigorating shower gel or facial rinse. Mint or citrus infused washes work wonders.
Keeping your body limber and loose will help you stay alert and comfortable during your waking hours, plus stretching relieves stress that could add to your exhaustion. Try these beginner yoga poses to start your day with a focused mind and relaxed body.
5. Take your vitamins.
Both vitamin C and vitamin B contribute to immune system health. To protect yourself from catching a virus while you’re sleepless and vulnerable, stock up on these as your body adjusts to its new sleep schedule. Juice carrots, oranges, and ginger for an extra boost!
6. Two strong coffees – no more, no less.
One’s insufficient but three’s a crowd. Avoid being under- or over-jazzed by sticking to the two coffees rule: one in the morning, and one midday, just before a nap if you take one. Avoid all caffeine when you’re three hours or less from your scheduled bedtime.
7. Don’t dress down.
A cozy sweater and comfy shoes will be even more tempting than usual if jet lag has got you feeling drained and super tired. Make it harder for yourself to drift off during day hours by dressing smart, so that even if you feel like a snooze, you look and feel like you mean business!
8. Create a pumped-up playlist.
Maybe you think it’s a cliché, but a round of invigorating and exciting tunes can work wonders for your energy level. Pump up the music while getting ready, listen on your commute to work, or pop your headphones in anytime you start to get drowsy ahead of schedule.
9. Eat well.
Keeping your body nourished keeps your body alert. Sugary and heavy snacks can be especially tempting when you’re desperate to stay energised, and it’s easy to be misled into choosing a sugary snack to liven yourself up. Resist! Invest in your own health by eating light, protein- and vitamin-rich foods that will fuel you without adding sugar crashes to your already lengthy list of excuses to pass out. Also, be sure to eat at appropriate meal times for your new timezone.
10. Take one half-hour power nap halfway through your day.
Don’t fool yourself: The first couple of days spent adjusting to new daylight hours will leave you tired, crabby, and weak. Completely depriving yourself of needed rest to adjust more quickly will only tire you out more. Schedule a short nap into your first couple of days to meet your body’s demand for sleep; this will sate your system better than sleeping in or crashing too early after a long, sleepless day.
11. Get some fresh air.
Even if you’re back in the office, take frequent breaks to get some air and sunlight. Not only does exposing yourself to natural light at regular intervals help your bodyclock readjust, but avoiding monotony is key to keeping your mind and body alert. Changing the scenery and taking some quality breaths can be a lifesaver!
12. Limit your alcohol intake.
Alcohol can act as a stimulant or depressant, so is sure to upset your already fragile body clock. Drinking can also lead to dehydration, which will make things even worse!
13. Take tiny breaks.
Nothing will fry your already time-defying brain more than doing the same task for too long. Switch up your activities frequently, and allow yourself more small snack, air, stretch, and bathroom breaks than usual. Keep your blood flowing and your brain and body going!
14. Make dinner plans with a friend.
By giving yourself something to look forward to toward at the end of the day, you’ll be less likely to give in to your fatigue, and more likely to make it through the day. In general, sticking to your schedule is key, so making fun a part of of your plan will make your regimen easier to follow.
This should go without saying, but when you’re fatigued, and especially when sleeping it off will hinder you from adjusting to a different timezone, drinking water is key to your health and success. Adhere to the standard intake of 1.5 litres per day for women and 2 litres per day for men.
16. Find a helpful app.
Both iTunes and Google Play provide a variety of programmes to retrain you to a new time zone. Highest rated is Jet Lag Rooster, which creates a custom gradual sleep-shifting schedule for every user. Just put in your flight details a few days in advance of your trip, and the app will take care of the rest.
17. Be positive!
Make every attempt not to focus on your jet lag, as you’ll only feel it all the more. If you’ve just come from a lovely holiday or even working abroad, remember your trip with fondness and look forward to your life back home. If you’ve just flown into a holiday spot, it should be easy to focus on the excitement and benefits of being there rather than giving into some pesky drowsiness.