By Martha Wiedemann
Life is movement. Life is change. I am on my flight home to Europe. My travels over the last 20 days not only took me through new sights, sounds, flavours, scents and feelings, but also it took me through my familiar past. It so happened that I was returning to my birth city Singapore to attend a conference. I decided that I would then extend my trip to visit family in Australia where I grew up and then return to Switzerland. I am Indian, Singaporean, Australian and Swiss. You see, I am a chameleon who loves the world in all its colours, shades and diversity, yet I like to explore the oneness in humanity and nature. I believe that life is a colourful journey.
Whatever the reason for travel, it is an opportunity for change. Whilst travel can be somewhat disruptive to our safe environment and routine, it has the power to inspire and enlighten through a brief encounter, a new vision or even a forgotten memory. It is the opportunity to stimulate and awaken the senses.
How we travel can also make us unwell. It can contribute to mental, physical and emotional stress, so we need to look at our travel plans as guidelines; keep in mind that not everything will be in our planned control. It is helpful to consider a wellness approach when we travel.
Our physical body is often subjected to disruption of sleep and digestive problems through travel. We can certainly try to minimize this by scheduling some rest time before we journey. It is also helpful to eat main meals before or after a flight rather than during. Drinking warm water or ginger teas will help the digestive system. Scheduling a massage before a flight is a good preventative to travel fatigue. Try to avoid exposure to on screen entertainment. Giving your eyes and mind a rest is a better choice. Try opting for meditation audios, allowing the body to rest without too much disturbance. Whilst travelling, it is also helpful to avoid heavy foods. Simple cooked meals are easier on the system. Avoid cold drinks and foods in general as the digestive fires are weaker especially through air travel.
Wellness is about being completely aware of every encounter, every thought and every choice. The more we live according to a mindless routine or habit, the more lifeless we become. I say, ‘when you are on a good thing, change it before it defines you.’ Living in consciousness is what living the moment is all about. If we can be truly present and aware of the here and now, we will be free of our regrets of the past and our fears of tomorrow. Freedom is being limitless and undefined. We have the power to break the cycle and momentum of all that makes us unwell.
So, the question is how? How do we really achieve this? How can we undo an illness and return to wellness? We reduce the speed of how we operate; we give our focus to an action or activity and not multitask; we breathe consciously; we observe our thoughts and discard the ones of judgement, regret and fear and lack. A distracted mind can rob us of the magical present moment. Pause everything, and appreciate our union with all creation.