Woohoo, summer has arrived! A season where many of us take time away from our daily must-do's and get in a car to take a road trip, hop on a plane to visit faraway friends, check off some beautiful destinations from our bucket list. In some cases, this also means stepping into new timezones to then readjust back home again.
I recently returned from a stunning two week vacation in Greece. Having landed home, I can feel parts of my heart and physical body being tugged back across the Atlantic Ocean toward the land of light. I can also feel myself wanting to settle at home, where so much is reassuringly comfortable and familiar.
This tug of energy to me, is the experience of jet lag. It's not just the struggle of getting sleepy in the middle of the day, or waking up at strange hours in the night. Jet lag is the turning of our homeostasis dial back to center which includes our whole being - mind, body, heart and soul.
There are plenty of over-the-counter stuff marketed toward the reversal of jet lag, and even more holistic supplements and concoctions. No judgement at all if that's what gets you through! In my case as a pregnant woman, I wanted to find natural ways to recalibrate.
Here are my top five tips for easing our inner dial back home:
1. Get outside! As soon as possible, get outside and go for a walk.
Being in sunlight begins the natural reset of our body and can help greatly with energy levels and a healthy sleep schedule. I like to take it easy, pause here and there to close my eyes and tilt my head up toward the sky. It feels rejuvenating to be showered by the frequencies of light waves.
2. Take deep breaths in nature, and if possible physically touch nature.
This could mean walking barefoot to experience blades of grass sliding through toes. It can also mean going up to a tree and placing a hand on its bark. Every living thing on Earth emits a certain vibration and how nature can shift our inner state is extremely powerful and healing. The deep breaths are important for our bodies, but also a silent way of saying 'thank you' to Mother Earth as we receive her offerings.
3. Drink plenty of water.
This is true all the time, not just post-travel, but I find when we are feeling sluggish or unable to think straight due to jet lag it can be one of the first things to slide. It's no secret that staying hydrated poses tremendous health benefits, so when our body is working extra hard to reset itself this form of nourishment feels vitally refreshing.
4. Eat an abundance of fresh veggies and fruit. Local and organic is a huge plus!
Fortunately the summer harvest yields a colorful array of produce in most parts of the world, making it that much easier for us to fuel up. As we nourish our bodies with foods that have come straight from the Earth, it only helps to reground us from the inside out. Consider a practice of incorporating a rainbow of whole foods to your lifestyle.
5. Be with your Community. Your people will spark your aliveness.
While it can feel tempting to hole up in bed until the jet lag passes, I believe our reset button gets an extra push every time we open our hearts to another human being, our eyes get a little brighter with each moment of eye contact, and our vitality gets a little nudge with every smile exchanged. This doesn't necessarily mean throw a party with everyone you know, but could be as simple as walking through the local farmers market or attending your favorite yoga class.