Categories: Community Blog

How to soar through life

Sun over airplane wing

I’ve been traveling a lot lately and have seen my share of airports and planes. The inevitable wait time provides endless opportunities for reflection and observation. It seems to me, there are some lessons to be learned on the airplane that make darn good sense for the rest of your life.

Too much baggage is not good

You can usually tell the people who don’t travel too often. They’re likely the ones whose carry-on bags will never fit into those sizing devices no matter how much they shove and cram. Or they’re found kneeling at the check-in counter scrambling to try to share the contents of their suitcases with their traveling companions so they meet the baggage weight restrictions.

Too much baggage is never a good thing when you are traveling. It’s an even worse idea as you travel through life. We all have a tendency to hold on to stuff long past when it serves us. Just like packing too much for a trip, people pack away physical and emotional things until they are way over their limit.

What thoughts, hurts, perspectives, relationships, and clutter are you dragging around with you?

Deciding to travel light just makes the whole trip – in life or to the beach – so much easier.

Put on your oxygen mask first

If you travel much at all, you likely tune out when the flight attendant begins the safety demonstration thinking, “I’ve heard it before….yeah, yeah, seatbelt, nearest exit, oxygen mask.”

I’ve always wondered when those little masks drop from the overhead compartment, how many people will actually follow the directions and put on theirs first before assisting others?

If the answer is based on how well people routinely practice self-care is any indication, not too many.

Most people are quick to take care of everyone else’s needs before they attend to their own.

Do you fill your day up with other people’s commitments and priorities and leave no time for your own?

Do you put your self-care – relaxation, exercise, nutrition – last on the list?

There’s a reason why you put your oxygen mask on first. It’s a good lesson to keep in mind – take care of you so you can take care of others.

Keep your seatbelt fastened in case of turbulence

Not too long ago there was an incident where a plane unexpectedly dropped several thousand feet and of course anyone not wearing their seatbelt had a rather unpleasant encounter with the ceiling of the plane.

Even though it’s suggested that you keep your seatbelt loosely fastened, many people wait for the seatbelt sign to go off and then unbuckle. When unexpected turbulence hits, they’re left scrambling to buckle themselves in.

Keeping your seatbelt on is one way to stay grounded in the plane. If it does get a little bumpy, you’re securely buckled into your seat. Knowing what keeps you grounded in life is a great way to ride through the rockier times. It might be your spiritual faith, or certain rituals and routines, or conversation with special people.

Do you know what keeps you grounded?

Do you practice that regularly or do you wait for tough times?

We never know when uncertain times will hit in life. Always being connected to what keeps you grounded makes it easier to weather the turbulence no matter how or when it shows up.

What life lessons have you learned from the airplane?

St. Albert Gazette: The St. Albert Gazette has been the source for news and community information in St. Albert and area since 1961. Today the twice-weekly full-colour tabloid delivers award-winning journalism in print, online and on mobile.