Stress Management for the Holiday Traveler

In a few days I'll be flying from California to Michigan. Altogether, door to door, it will be twelve hours worth of travel. The TV news in the past about the long lines and rude people has prepared me. It's not going to ruin my holiday. This year I know what to expect and how to handle it.
I fly at least eight times per year for my job and I admit the first few times were nerve wracking. I remember my first flight in the 80's and I was almost panicking. Now I prefer a window seat and meditate on how amazing the world is from 3000 feet. It's hard to deny your spirituality when viewing something so beautiful.
I have a ritual that I use to cope and it may help you as well. The previous meditation is part of it. I sit quietly and feel the plane leaving ground. I concentrate on the sensations. I experience the butterflies in my stomach instead of fighting it. I wait for the familiar feeling of getting pushed back in my seat from the pressure of the plane increasing speed. I watch the ground getting farther and farther away. It's exhilarating!
I find renewed interest in God during take-off. I pray. It's just a part of human nature. I thank him for allowing us to have something so beautiful to live in and when you think about it, we won't be any closer in this life than at that point.
I keep it relaxed and controlled while the plane is in it's ascent. I actually count to myself one...two...three inhale. One...two...three exhale. It induces the relaxation response and puts an end to that fight or flight syndrome that I previously experienced during take off.
Hustle and Bustle
The hustle and bustle of travel during the Holidays are a reality. There will be crying children, stressed parents, weary businessmen and lonely students. There will be overworked security personnel, airline agents and rental car employees.
Kill Them With Kindness
I'm convinced at this moment that I will respond with kindness to those who are losing their patience. I will offer help when I can and be tolerant when I can not. Counting down the hours to my destination will pass the time. At 3pm when someone has just reamed me, I know that in three hours I'll be home and it won't matter.
I'll keep my drivers license in the little "goes around my neck" American Tourister organizer for fast identification. I'll pack my laptop so that it's easy to unpack for security. I'll allow enough extra time for check in so that I won't be in such a hurry and worse - miss my plane. I'll wear slip on shoes that I can take off easily.
I hope a few of these ideas will be helpful to you as well. If you are traveling, remember why we chose to go home during these last few days before the holiday.
At this point, I would tolerate almost anything to be home. We can handle this. Small price to pay to have family near.
Cathy has seen both coasts of the United States and frequently flies for her job. She enjoys writing and has maintained a journal for most of her adult life. She now writes for various blogs.