Allowing my openness and intuition to act as my travel guide, I have often been led, through coincidental circumstances, to stay in some amazing homes of wise teachers who have provided pertinent life lessons in addition to mere shelter. In other cases, by being aware that my feelings were telling me an area was not ‘safe’ I know, from later news reports of violence in the area I was visiting, I have avoided possible harm which might have occurred had I stayed only a bit longer.
Using techniques from a range of cultures, I have developed a helpful ‘sensitivity tool kit’ that both my clients and I use to enable us to enjoy our travels in a more relaxed manner. Some of these methods include the practice of mindfulness meditation, keeping a dream journal, and learning exercises to help one feel ‘grounded. I also advocate the further development of one’s intuition to help act as an extra guide along on one’s travels.
One example of how to keep oneself ‘grounded’ goes back to an ancient maritime tradition. Sailors who journeyed for months at a time needed a remedy that could help ease their disconnection from their homeland. Often, a piece of their own land, either in the form of a rock, wood, dried flower or other natural object was wrapped in muslin and tied around their neck or waist to give them a sense of being grounded, even while drifting afloat. Modern travelers can carry the same type of object with them, whether they travel by plane, boat, car, bus or rail.
Also, travel size flower essences and oils can also be used to help one return to center through the power of aromatherapy.
Practicing mindful meditation or learning a calming healing technique, such as the energy medicine system, Reiki also aids a person in times of distress or when minor injuries or ailments occur. Reiki (pronounces “Ray” “Key”) is a Japanese method of hands-on-healing that is easy to learn and practice on oneself or loved ones. The word itself means “Universal Energy” and it is this that the practitioner basks in when one is giving or receiving a treatment, removing the body of any ‘blocks’ and thereby restoring the body, mind and spirit to balance. My students find that having Reiki in their portable first aid kit becomes a portable method of self-healing, turning many a difficult travel day into a more fluid, positive experience.
All of these techniques are quite important considering the investment one makes in taking a trip, whether across the country or across the world. Rick Steves, the Travel Guru once said that “Travel is accelerated living”. In being sensitive, that only means one needs to take greater care of one self and of the itinerary that lies ahead to promote the safest and most enjoyable trip possible.