How To Wander

Airports: How to Keep Anxiety Levels Low

Dear Readers,

I get anxious in malls. I also get anxious in airports, especially large ones.

What do they have in common? Well, for starters, they both can get pretty busy. There’s lots to look at, buy, and consume. I find myself easily misplacing things, while also wanting to keep a strict eye on where my bags are at all times. I often find myself overwhelmed, a little confused, and honestly.. sweaty.

What can we do to find some peace while in airports?


A blue and yellow sky, featuring palm tree shadows and a plane.


  1. Arrive Feeling Prepared

Notice that I didn’t just say to arrive and be prepared. I said to arrive and feel prepared. Even though certain things are what they are, and continue to be what they continue to be, our emotions can change easily and in an instant, creating problems that don’t actually exist.

So, yes, arrive feeling prepared. Make a checklist before you leave home, and make sure that you have everything that you need. Double check. Go back if you forget something. Do whatever you have to do to feel set to go.


two blonde women waiting for a flight.


  1. Bring Music (Or Whatever Helps You Feel Grounded)

I keep my iPod playing almost constantly while I am in airports. This allows me to have a focus point, and also allows me to pick the “mood” of the atmosphere, despite the hustle and bustle. While I’m waiting for my flight or to pick up bags, I usually create a playlist based on my needs for that specific day and time.

Somedays I need to power through with Eminem, some days I fly with the Jonas Brothers, and some days I need Christina Perri to bring me back down. You never know until you feel through it.


a girl happy carrying a back pack by a window.


  1. Carry Less

To be honest, this is something that I struggle with. I currently sit, writing this, on a plane with three carry-ons. While I’m walking around in the airport, I find it harder to focus on things around me while I’m watching all of my bags. Each time that I relocate or use the restroom, I have to do a triple check to make sure I didn’t leave anything behind.

Skip the stress. And if possible, just carry less.


A sign directing flights in Chile, South America.


  1. Double Check on Flight Logistics

If you’re like me, you may double or triple check the screens to make sure that you’re remembering the right gate to catch your flight, or even check the boarding time more than once. That’s OK. Allow yourself to check. I always feel better when I know that I am keeping myself on schedule!


A cup of coffee while waiting to fly.


  1. Eat Supportive Food

What are supportive foods? Well, that depends on your needs. For example, when I go to airports, I usually am listing to music that keeps me light and airy, or looking outside windows dreaming myself away. So, when I reach for food, I usually avoid things that are made completely out of fruit or that feel super light after I eat them.  The heavier foods and carbs do a good job at weighing me down just enough; a great balance to bring me back to earth.

But, like I said, it depends on your needs. When you learn to eat in a way where you can support your needs through plant-based items, instead of depending on food as a whole for comfort, you may find yourself feeling much more balanced and whole.


Girl doing a headstand in the middle of the airport


  1. Stretch, Breathe and Meditate While You Wait

What is one of my most favorite travel items? My yoga mat. What will you find me doing in the boarding area? Stretching. With or without the mat. And more importantly, without the approval of others.

When you can focus less on what others may (or may not) think of you, and focus on your needs, and you can better take care of yourself. Don’t be afraid to get lost in Child’s Pose for a few minutes before people begin to scramble on the plane, or close your eyes and set a timer to check out—inward—in the middle of an airport.

As always, keep your bags close and be observant of the situations that you are in. I usually keep my items lightly in my touch while I meditate in public. That way, I don’t have to worry about someone taking something while I focus on my breath.

I always love when I see people breaking out Sun Salutations in airports. You don’t have to doubt that it always brings a huge, internal smile to my body. Keep on keepin’ on!







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