Top 5 Ways to Mentally Detox on the Road

detoxInternationally recognized health and wellness expert Uche Odiatu, presenter of Monday’s session “Fit to LEAD: The Health and Fitness Performance Advantage,” offers tips specific to business travelers in this top 5 list. 

Sit up straight and breathe deeply. Sitting in the taxi, airport lounge, plane, or in meetings adds up to a whole lot of sedentary living. The interesting thing is that you end up even more tired, because sitting puts your spine, diaphragm, lungs, and shoulders in a disadvantaged position for good oxygenation of your brain.

Make sure you get seven to nine hours of sleep for optimal health. It is one of my seven pillars. The only time the body replenishes, grows, and resets hormones is while you’re sleeping. It’s the one-third of your life that controls the quality of the other waking two-thirds.

Taylor Swift is right — “Shake It Off.” The ability to manage stress is a big part of showing leadership powers. Everyone admires someone who stays solid and unflappable when everyone around them is losing their minds. A 2012 article in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise reported people who regularly exercise have less of a knee-jerk reaction when things get tense.

Everyone has heard of people who have worried themselves sick. Candace Pert, Ph.D., author of The Molecules of Emotion, writes that our immune systems eavesdrop on our every thought. Cortisol and adrenaline (the hormones of stress) immobilize your immune system. Doing some kind of physical activity when you’re most annoyed or upset (and I don’t mean throwing your cellphone) dissipates the stress hormones in that moment and allows your immune system to work like it’s supposed to.

In a survey of the top sales people, they were asked what their most valuable asset was that got them there. “Our communication skills,” they replied. One easy way to imitate the top communicators is to improve your body language. Being able to use your body and bend, move, and gesture to make a point enhances your ability to communicate your point of view.