Whenever we travel, it's a toss up as to whether we are going to be able to stay on the straight and narrow when it comes to our beauty, meditation and general self care routine. It's so easy to slip into bad habits when you're having to go through the dreaded TSA or you don't have access to the closest health food store. Worse yet, because we're on vacation we sometimes totally forget to meditate or get a workout in - and pay the price later when we're snapping at our loved ones. But it's unrealistic to do everything you do at home when you're on the road, and since at STAE we are all about balance, incorporating ritual where we can - we thought who better to ask than the yoga community's premier travel and retreat maven, Heather Lilleston of Yoga For Bad People.
Thankfully, Heather doesn't prescribe to some elaborate routine, and talked about what works for her: "In terms of traveling and beauty rituals I just had to narrow it down. I know my shampoo and conditioner. I love the PURIFY green mud from LINNÉ because it’s a face mask and a face wash. I was never into washing my face. I was always into washing my face and my body, but never my face. I never wore makeup and I only just started wearing makeup a couple of years ago. Really simple, I think having little things, like a little rose spray. And there is this chapstick I like right now so I bought 8 of them because that works. And dental floss."
When it comes to Heather's meditation practice on the road she says "I’m super forgiving with myself. I spent many years not forgiving myself and being under the banner of guilt. And I’ve let that go. She continues: "But I think there is a time and a place for really strict discipline, I meditated an hour every morning for maybe 5 years of my life so that was the time that I was like I am not worthy to teach yoga and I still after meditating all this fricking time I’m still not worthy, and then I just realized I’m never going to be “worthy” and who cares. So I have something on my phone that I use, I tried listening to Headspace for a bit and that can be great."
"But I came from a different tradition, where watching the breath for me never worked—watching the breath meant thinking about boys. What really worked for my mind were analytical meditations from the Buddhist tradition, I need my mind to work on a problem. And then I was able to sit for longer. Also when you have a teacher, the guilt of that: someone you commit to – I am going to sit everyday for a period of time. Then it holds you to it in a weird way. So you have to figure out what that is for you. Now I can sit and stay with the breath. Brainwave therapy and sound therapy have also all been really helpful."
The takeaway from this conversation is that in travel, like in life, it's best to keep it super simple and make sure you don't get too down on yourself when it comes to your practice. Whether it's adding in one ritual you take with you everywhere, like using a spray, or squeezing in 10 minutes of meditation using the timer on your phone the main thing is that the ritual makes you feel good, and at ease.
Some other simple rituals for travel: