Here are some of the tips and tricks that we use to stay productive while on the road and on the travel which as you may know is pretty often.
Don’t check valuables
There are plenty of apps to download in the Google Play Store, and Chromebooks is specifically designed to work with the cloud, which means all of your work is already automatically backed up. So if the airline loses your checked bag, and you put your computer in your checked bag, it’s totally screwed.
The Chromebook is perfect for carry-on luggage because it weighs just over two pounds, and it’s a half an inch thick. It slides very easily into your carry-on luggage. So you never even have to worry about potentially losing it in your checked luggage because it goes right into your carry-on luggage.
Globalize your calendar
When you’ve got deadlines that span multiple time zones, you’ve got to keep everything synced up using a shared online calendar. I actually start our scheduling using an old-school handwritten planner. Digital calendars are really great for business travel because they help you avoid confusion with time zones. If you have a meeting next week in Berlin at 4 p.m., you can actually put the location of the meeting, which will automatically change it to the time zone in the location of your meeting. This feature is crucial. It’s saved our but numerous times, and I highly recommend that you use it.
It actually pulls your airline reservations from Gmail and your hotel address straight to Google Maps and then sends it to your phone, so you don’t find yourself lost late at night looking for your hotel.
Stay charged up
Keep your batteries charged. I’m not just talking about the batteries for your phone or your computer or your camera. I’m talking about your batteries, too. But here are a couple of tips that are pretty basic. Take it relatively easy the week before your trip. Get a good night’s sleep the night before your trip. Make sure that all of your batteries for all of your devices and yourself are properly charged before you set foot out the door.
See movie in a free time
A single charge on the laptop lasts approximately 10 hours. That’s enough to get you through a full day of work. So the second you hit cruising altitude, you can power it on, flip over the screen, and turn your tray table into a movie theater.
Take time offline to increase creativity
For all the talk of staying connected, remember that a lot of your creativity happens when you’re offline, especially when you’re traveling. Sometimes your best ideas come when you’re miles away from cell service and then inspiration strikes. That’s why it’s super important to use the offline time to your advantage. Be productive even when you’re offline.
My favorite place to be creative is on the airplane. I never buy online Wi-Fi because I know the airplane is the one place that I’m going to be completely free of distractions. With nowhere else to be, nothing else to do, I can focus on my tasks, on my creativity flow, or just catch up with emails that piled up while I’m overseas. Whether it’s writing a script, researching new destinations, or catching up on creative writing, Google Docs works offline. So the second I touch down, It syncs across all my devices.
Most of us love to travel because it’s an escape from the routine. But in all honesty, keeping a bit of regularity in your schedule will really help you stay on top of things while you’re abroad. It can be as simple as finding a good coffee shop to go to each morning when you’re in a new city. It helps you reset, ground yourself with some ground coffee beans, and even feel a little bit like a local.
Beyond that trying to maintain fitness or a self-care routine will help you keep your balance while you’re away. It can be as simple as rolling out of bed, doing some push-ups, some sit-ups, a little bit of yoga or meditation before you start your day.
Everyone deals with jet lag differently, but personally, I take a bit of a Taoist approach- working with jet lag, rather than fighting against it- that is if you fly west, you’re going to wake up early. Harness those extra hours for some uninterrupted creative time- a meditation session or going running across your new city. It’s a great way to get your bearings, and watching the sunrise will help your body clock adjust.
If you’re traveling east, you’re going to have trouble going to sleep. Use that time to catch up with friends back home or curl up with a good book until you fall asleep. Otherwise, baths really help, call the front desk, see if they have some bubble bath, like some bath salts, and then listen to some Mongolian throat singing.
Feel the experience
Make sure to steal away and have some time for a legitimate real cultural experience. It can be as simple as stepping out of the conference room for a quick tour of the city, grabbing dinner with an old friend or checking out the bar. If you can swing it, delay your trip by 48 hours, and make a little mini vacation at the end of that business trip. If you don’t feel like pushing your luck, just bring home a souvenir for your boss, and thank him for the opportunity to get out of the office.