One of the things that comes very much hand in hand with being part of the cabin crew is dealing with the crippling tiredness. You work some seriously long hours plus you’re jet lagged from all that jet-setting all around the world. You’re flying and when you’re not flying you’re partying or trying to catch up on your sleep at some ridiculous hour in a hotel room, or you’re packing and rushing, trying to get your butt out the door to catch another stupidly early morning flight.
Let’s face it – being part of the aviation industry is exhausting!
There is some good news on the horizon ladies and gentlemen. There are actions you can take to help keep this cabin tiredness to a minimum and what’s even better, it’s not just great advice for cabin crew but frequent flyers too!
Sadly, there is no real, proven way to combat jet lag but more a series of things you should try until you find one that works for you. What works for one person won’t work for another, this is very much a personal thing, but there are things you’re doing that definitely don’t help.
Drinking a cup of coffee isn’t a bad idea before the flight but drinking an entire flight’s worth of coffee before a flight isn’t a great idea. You’ll suffer pretty badly at the hands of that caffeine crash, and it’s going to be a nightmare trying to serve food and drinks when you’re shaking so bad.
Keeping yourself hydrated is a good idea so try to substitute the off cup of coffee for a glass of water. Make the water ice cold and your body will go into overdrive, burning calories trying to heat the fluid to body temperature. Technically, you’re killing two birds with one stone!
This can help with jet lag and cabin tiredness although admittedly, it’s not the easiest thing in the world to achieve. De-stressing is hard work when there are so many things around you stressing you out but just remember to give yourself a minute every now and again to breathe in and out with big, deep breaths and get back in tune with yourself. Catering and serving so many people is a must for your job but you can’t miss out on you-time too. Head to the loo and just take a minute to breathe. It’ll be easier to go back to work with a smile on your face.
When you’re off-duty, try not to surround yourself with stressful things. If you have a bad boyfriend who never pays the bills and causes you nothing but hassle, ditch him and find yourself a new pilot on CrewDating.com. If you live with someone who drives you nuts, find your own space where you are less aggravated. The more stressed you are, the more it’ll wreak havoc with your sleep cycles and that definitely doesn’t help cabin tiredness.
Get Out and About!
We know all you want to do on your rare days off is hit the sofa and not move until your next call but sadly, that kind of behaviour isn’t doing you any favours.
Get yourself up and moving – exercising is the best way to regulate your sleep patterns, help to overcome jet lag and even alleviate a bad mood. If you’re unable to sleep when you get to the hotel, don’t lie there tossing and turning. Get up off your butt and go hit the hotel gym or go for a run. Even if you only manage half an hour or so, it’s better than nothing and it’ll get all sorts of hormones and feel-good stuff racing around your body. You’ll probably find that it’ll encourage natural sleep patterns too.
Fast food might be quicker but it’s doing your body no good at all. If you have a healthy and balanced diet, your body has all the nutritional goodness it needs to deal with the stress and strain you’re putting it under. How can it deal with all those sleepless nights when it doesn’t have the right vitamin and minerals going into it?
You need to treat your body well if you want it to deal with the high-pressure environments you keep putting it in and one of the easiest things you can do to sort that out is eat better.
Eat lots of fresh fruit and vegetables and make sure you eat plenty of protein like chicken or turkey. Tuna and salmon is good for those great omega-3’s and fatty acids, and it’s always good to allow yourself sweet treats from time to time so don’t be afraid to eat the ‘bad stuff’ but in moderation. If you want a piece of cake, have a piece of cake. If you have a reasonably-sliced piece, your body won’t hate you for it. Plus, chocolate also releases feel-good hormones.
You may have heard that avoiding carbs is a great way to avoid tiredness and that dreaded sleepy, bloat feeling but in actual fact, skipping the carbs completely is a very bad idea. You should be eating carbohydrates but the good ones, not the bad ones.
If you eat lots of food that bogs you down, you’re going to get bogged down. Things like cakes, crisps, rich and creamy pasta in sauce dishes… They taste good but they’re packed with the bad carbs. Good carbs are from brown rice and pasta. Do some research on the net and you’ll soon see where you’re going wrong.
There are plenty of things you can try to combat cabin tiredness but the fact of the matter is this – you are tired for a reason, your body is tired. We know you have a high pressure job but make sure you take a little time out from time to time to pat attention to YOU and YOUR needs. It’s not all about your passengers all the time. If you’re not in tip-top condition, your reaction times in an emergency situation won’t be either.