Create a Travel Keystone Habit for the Best Holiday Season

It’s holiday season! How can you let go and enjoy the long summer evenings and your vacation, without throwing away good efforts for your health and regressing completely?

Shifting from your daily routine can bring much-needed novelty and freshness. But too often, I see clients return from holiday in worse physical shape. Digestion goes haywire from eating irregularly, late and heavy meals. We all know we have less control over what we eat and make exceptions to our healthy foods when we’re away.

So no wonder falling off the wagon usually happens when we change our schedule or go on vacation. This isn’t news. We know this. And that means…we can action and plan for it!

Let’s have a look at how you can avoid triggering weight gain, digestive problems, hormone imbalance, and coming home exhausted from your holiday.

Keystone habits

Identify one single, simple action that is the most critical for you not to miss. The one that, if you do it, you feel great and it is easier to remember to eat well, stay active, be present and really take advantage of the time off. Keystone habits are ones that fit any destination.

Do your most important habit first thing in the morning

Do your most critical thing immediately upon waking. That way, you set yourself up for making good choices the rest of the day, and you ensure you’ve done the minimum for the day. You’re likely going to be too tired or run out of time at the end of the day, so don’t promise yourself to do it when you get back, just knock it out first thing. Is that 10 minutes of meditation before you head off to the beach or to explore the city?

Remember your purpose

If you know you’ve thrown out your good habits in the past, remember your purpose. A few days before you leave, write out your main health goals, and how you can take steps to protect those while you’re away. Make sure your purpose is clear: “Improve my digestion to get rid of menstruation pain in 3 months.”

So if that is really your purpose, it needs to be your #1 priority. You cannot afford to postpone. It is the mind’s habit of ‘postponing” health that gets us into trouble.

So how can you continue to make progress on your goal despite the irregularity, having less control, and being tempted to stay up late and eat heavy holiday foods? Write it out.

Talk to who your travelling with.

People often express feeling pressure when travelling with others. “I don’t want to impose on my family” seems to be a common theme. But in the end, it doesn’t serve them if your tired and grumpy because you ate poorly. Your body doesn’t have a pause button. Put your oxygen mask on first.

Talk with them in advance. Many times, we have imagined an agreement in our minds without actually having a talk with the group to see what everybody’s expectations.

What most people discover is your family will be relieved you are trying to improve your health, and will support you!! If they know your #1 effort right now is improving your condition to avoid certain health consequences, they won’t see it as inconvenient. The people close to you feel the consequences more than anyone if you’re not doing your self-care: bad moods, short tempers, not feeling as free or open, not having the energy to play, easily stressed.

So have the conversation. Ask if they are willing to help you during your trip.

Don’t aim for perfection

You’re not expected to be ‘perfect’ 100% of the time. But you should take small steps to keep moving forward, everyday, whatever that day happens to be. Aim for 60%. Your body needs that consisten

Stick to a plant-based diet

Ayurveda is not a vegetarian medicine. But it does promote eating mostly plant foods. Plant-based foods, including grains, beans, veggies, and fruits are simply lighter, and that can be a great thing to keep your digestion strong during travel. So why not become a vegetable lover while you’re away?

Example Keystone Habit: Meditation

Let’s say you know that meditation is your keystone habit. It is the one thing that keeps you relaxed & available for the rest of the day. So use that when you travel! Use it to settle into a new place. Practicing presence can make new surroundings less disruptive to your internal mind & body rhythms. Tips: Do it first thing in the morning. Take a thin hand towel to create physical sense of meditation space, or your meditation shawl to bring a sense of continuity from home.

So, What’s your plan to keep moving forward even when you are away?

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