An area that is little talked about, but has an impact on all frequently business travellers, is the impact on family life. Sure it can look glamorous, your friends will say how lucky you are, ask if there are jobs going in your company and you will have great stories and experiences to share.
When travelling the significance is mainly felt at home. Your partner will miss you, you will miss out on events, or even feel tired for several days when you return. Certainly, you will feel less enthusiastic about a day out following a 1 am arrival back home.
Employers need to understand this. It’s not just the accrued hours that need to be returned, but additional measure enabling you to have more downtown. Whether this is allowing you to work from home for several days after a trip or an extra day or two off.
Employers may think only long distance trips across time zones are the problematic ones, but as I an attest, the short day trips take their toil also. A 9 am flight may sound reasonable, but you will arrive at 7 am, plus driving and sufficient time to wake up and get ready and you will be to wake up at 5 am. However typically speaking on day trips you tend to take the 7 am flight in order to have the meeting that day. Several of these a month and your sleep cycle is significantly disrupted.
Another area that is impacted, is nutrition. At 5 am whether because you are not hungry, or pressed for time it is unlikely you will enjoy a balanced breakfast. Certainly not at the airport as inevitably you will be tempted by a latte, pastry or panini. Not the healthiest start. Or if you are lucky enough to have lounge access you will be presented a buffet of temptation. This leads back to the family life. These temptations add up and mood can be affected by bad nutrition, like feeling lethargic.
Work to Live
We travel extensively because we enjoy our work, but in the end, we do it to support our families and to enjoy ourselves. Your employer should understand this.
Take control of your trips. If you do not plan your trips, the person sat in the office certainly does not understand the impact their decision makes on your life, or sleep. Many sites these days like Airbnb and Booking.com allow you to set up company profiles with budgets. Spent an extra 10 minutes choosing the nicer room, best location and to compare the deals. A hot tub to relax in at the end of a hard day, does wonders to put things right.
Try to focus on eating and drinking right. No easy feat as I must admit I am among the biggest culprit for a tempting latte and pastry. But eating right or skipping a coffee shop or two will help with your energy levels, no sugar spikes.
Lastly, if time allows do not forget the importance of a quick Skype call with your family. It keeps you connected and lets them know that you are thinking of them.
Happy Family, Happy Life.