How to handle the "business travel blues"

busy office building atrium

In many ways, traveling for your job can be seen as a perk - you get to visit new locations and acquire unique travel experiences you might not experience while on vacation. However, if you're more of a homebody or if traveling for business is too involved and most of your time is spent on the road, it might become exhausting, both physically and mentally. This experience, known as the "business travel blues" could leave you feeling stressed out and drained. If traveling is an essential part of your job there are ways to help make business travel less stressful and more tolerable!

Run the household smoothly
One of the biggest reasons business travel can become stressful is if you have to worry a lot about your family and house while you're away and feel unprepared if emergencies pop up. Forbes suggested creating a reliable routine for home tasks while you're away to help lessen some of the burden. Also, be sure to plan for "what if" scenarios in the event of an emergency.

Sit down with members of your household and make a plan for how chores and errands will be divvied up in your absence to delegate tasks. If they are unable to help out with any pertinent tasks perhaps you can consider hiring a temporary nanny,  cleaning service, pet sitter or laundry service. If you live alone ask neighbors or trusted relatives or friends if they can keep an eye on your house with minor house sitting duties or consider paying for a house sitting service.

Plan out any free time you might have
It can get boring if you spend all of your time outside of work just sitting in your hotel room, as The New York Times explained. If you know that you will have some free time during your business trip try to see if any colleagues you are traveling with or from the local city are available to meet up outside of the office whether it is for a casual happy hour, dinner or sightseeing; especially if you are on an international trip a local colleague can help you become familiar with the city and share new perspectives.

Try to connect with family or friends outside of office hours if any happen to live in the city you are visiting on business travel. Research if there are any activities you can do (e.g., cooking class, walking tour, etc.) after office hours or on the weekend to break up the monotony of work. Don't forget to make time for yourself even if it just lounging at the hotel pool or a cafe with a book you have been meaning to read or reserving a relaxing massage at the hotel spa. 

Connect with your loved ones back home
For some, the biggest challenge of frequently leaving home is being away from family. Stay connected by making calls home each night and block out time on your calendar to make sure you have quality time to catch up, especially if you can video chat with your loved ones. It will help to see their faces and hear their voices as you chat about your days together, just like if you were at home. Consider even trying to virtually share an activity together, like watching a movie or show at the same time while video chatting together (if you are in a reasonable time zone) to help feel less isolating. It will feel more like you're getting time together than it will with just a few texts throughout the day. Make plans for when you are back from the business trip so you all have something fun to look forward to.

Take care of your health while on the road
Traveling can make it harder for you to eat healthy or maintain your usual exercise routine. This can have a ripple effect on your health, leading to poor sleep, agitation, fatigue, depression and stress. Inc. highlighted the need to stay hydrated when you travel, especially before, during and after a flight. Keep a reusable water bottle with you and fill it several times a day to ensure drink enough water.

Buy energizing, healthy snacks and fruit you can eat on the go to help you fend off hunger and prevent over eating unhealthy foods from restaurants or room service. If possible, see about getting a room with a mini fridge so you can store fruits and healthy snacks. Pay attention to nutrition facts and avoid empty calories caused by simple carbohydrates, saturated fats, sodium and sugar when eating out. Avoid caffeine or too much alcohol close to bedtime as well. Eating well can help make it easier to get a much-needed full night's sleep. Exercise will improve your mood, and your sleep habits, too. Try to utilize the hotel gym before you get ready in the morning, or simply go for a walk around the building. It will boost your energy.

It takes a lot of work to travel often for business, but if you plan accordingly, it can be a manageable and enjoyable experience.

Contact your travel insurance provider for further assistance.

The information contained here is provided by Brafton. AIG Travel assumes no responsibility for the use, accuracy, or interpretation of the information contained herein.