5 ways to maintain good mental health when travelling for work

5 ways to maintain good mental health when travelling for work

As a business traveller, you’ll know the excitement and challenges that come with frequent travel. While exploring new places and meeting new people can be invigorating, the disruption to your routine, long hours, and time away from loved ones can take a toll on your mental wellbeing. To honour Mental Health Awareness Week, here are some handy hints and tips to help you keep your mental health in check while travelling for business. 

1. Stick to a routine 

Having a solid routine can give us a sense of familiarity and comfort, which will help you feel a sense of calmness and control over your day. Therefore, try and stick to your usual day-to-day routine as much as possible. Aim to go to bed and wake up at the same time as you would if you were at home, and try to eat your meals at your preferred times. 

2. Make time for self-care 

Tying into maintaining your routine is making time for self-care. When you're busy with work commitments, it's easy to neglect self-care. However, taking care of yourself is crucial for maintaining good mental health.  

Whether it’s making the most of the hotel gym, having a relaxing bath at the end of a long day, or simply setting aside time to get lost in a book, listen to an uplifting podcast, or getting some fresh air and going for a walk, it’s important to prioritise the things that make you feel good.  

Remember, you can't pour from an empty cup. Taking care of yourself will allow you to perform at your best both professionally and personally.

3. Stay connected with loved ones 

Being away from family and friends can be one of the hardest parts of business travel – particularly if you’re away for extended periods. Although conflicting time zones can make it tricky to spontaneously pick up the phone, make sure you schedule regular video chats or phone calls so you have something to look forward to at a set time. Sending voice notes and sharing photos or videos of your travels can also help you to stay connected with your loved ones.  

4. Don’t be afraid to set boundaries 

Just because you're traveling for work doesn't mean you need to be available 24/7. To avoid burnout and to maintain a healthy work-life balance, set clear boundaries between work and personal time. Make an agreement with yourself that you won’t check work emails after a certain time and communicate your availability to colleagues and clients to manage their expectations.  

The line can often become blurred between work events and social gatherings, so if there’s a non-essential dinner or party in your calendar, don’t be afraid to politely decline.   

5. Embrace the experience 

While work trips can be stressful, they’re also an opportunity to explore new places and have new experiences – which can help you find a new-found joy and purpose in your travels, even when you’re there on business. Set some time aside to visit local attractions, sample the local cuisine, learn about the history and culture, and connect with locals.  

You could even tap into the growing ‘bleisure’ trend and tag on some additional days to your business trip purely to play tourist and to enjoy some downtime before you head home. Recent research from our SME Travel Trends Report showed that on average, SMEs extend their business trips by 2.64 days so their travellers can unwind and explore a destination once their work commitments are over. 

Maintaining good mental health while traveling for work is essential for your personal wellbeing and professional success. At Travel Counsellors for Business, your health and happiness is our absolute priority, so we’ll work with you to ensure the wellbeing needs of you and your travellers are not only met, but exceeded. We pride ourselves on our care-led approach to corporate travel, so if you’re looking for a travel management company that will genuinely put you first, you’re in the right place. Get in touch to find out how Travel Counsellors for Business can help you to travel happily and safely.  

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