My Rituals for Long Flights

 

I recently realized that I have a traveling ritual which makes me act like I’m flying alone even when I’m not. It’s a way to get myself into my own little introverted bubble, which of course as the traveling introvert is perfect for me. It helps me to block out the world. I never paid much attention until I took a long haul flight with a friend and I realized that I pretty much ignored them the whole way – not because I didn’t like them, but because I always do things the same.
So, this is what I do:

• I arrive early so I can check out all the most up to date details of the flight. If there is any chance of delay, or me not getting the seat I want, I need to know ASAP so I can fix it.


• I get on the plane first so I can get myself organised. Luckily, because I always plan in advance, I have everything that I’m going to need while flying in a smaller bag inside my carry on. That way, I can grab it easily creating much less of a fuss.

• Then I put my bag in the overhead bin opposite me. I don’t do it in the one above me because it’s safer if I can see it. If someone is rummaging through my bag I can’t see that happening above my head!

• I take my seat, but I don’t buckle up in case I need to move, which if I’m in the aisle seat I have to a lot.

• Then I take my travel sickness tablets. If I haven’t got water with me, I’ll ask someone for it.

• I moisturize all my exposed skin because flying dehydrates me massively. On that note, I check my app which reminds me to drink water every hour.

• I put on my compression socks and slippers before taking down my hair so I don’t get headaches.

• Then I start blocking out the world by putting in my earphones and deciding what I’m going to watch and listen to while I fly. I get into my own little introvert bubble where I’m happiest.

What are your travelling rituals? Are yours similar to mine or do you have your own quirks?

How to Train your Extrovert

As an introvert it can be very hard to tell the extroverts in your life what you want and need. Often they want to care for you, but they don’t know hard and because of your introverted nature, you find it hard to express yourself in a successful way. Since everyone is different and unique, all our needs are different. No two introverts are the same, which makes it even more challenging.

Before communicating, it’s important to understand that an extrovert will struggle to understand and empathize because it isn’t something that they’ve been through themselves, but they’ll be willing to listen and work with you because they love you. Sometimes to discover what works for you, you’ll have to work together and go through a period of trial and error, but you’ll get there.

So, find a way to express yourself. Whether it’s a conversation, a letter, an email… whatever it takes. Getting the information out there is half the battle and the education for the other person! As long as you say what you need, and no one knows what you need better than you do, and you explain why, you’re on your way.

Airport Hotel Fails

 

My main concern with airport hotels is that they do not have 24 hour check in and out. They are positioned near a service which runs all the time so it would make much more sense to do so. Your flight might not get in until two o clock in the morning, and by the time you’ve got through baggage claim, immigration, and onto the shuttle bus, you might not get in and to bed until much nearer three.

Having to get up before midday with the lack of sleep and jet lag is killer. It also means that you don’t get any enjoyment from the luxury of your hotel, it’s purely for sleep… and an expensive sleep at that. The added tax onto airport hotels makes the stay there hardly worth it sometimes. It’s easy to see why some people prefer to actually forgo that and sleep where they can at the airport instead. Offering a service where you could check out 12 or 24 hours after you check in would make so much difference to frequent travelers.

 

Blackout curtains should actually work. I LOVE black out curtains but very few hotels have good ones. As an introvert I love to check in have a shower and pass out without interruption. Blackout curtains help me fall asleep quicker. So if you are going to do them, do them right.


Another issue I have is the lack of available food. It’s recommended that when travelling to a different time zone that you try and get into that new time a few days before. This changes your sleep and eating arrangements. If food isn’t available as a 24 hour room service or even a pantry option, then it’s impossible to do so. This would also be great with water. I’ve been to many hotels where coffee is available all the time but water isn’t, which is odd because flying makes you dehydrated. Coffee isn’t as helpful for that as water would be!

I would love it if at least one brand of hotel paid attention to this, it would make my life so much easier and I’m sure many others too!

Why Client Onboading is Important

 

Working with clients, especially as a freelancer, can be a nightmare. Often people who hire freelancers don’t seem to understand or respect that they are also running a business and have their own working methods and ways of doing things.

That’s where I think an initial onboarding call can be useful. You can hash out all the details of what you expect and what the client expects, followed by an email confirming all this information. Speaking to someone right away and getting all the details confirmed can save issues cropping up later on.

In this call you should cover:

• The length of the project and what hours you are available.
• The testing period, to confirm that you are the right fit for one another.
• Your best method of communication and how often you are willing to speak to them, so there aren’t any mishaps in that area.
• Then if they message you outside these communication times, tell them what to expect. Such as you will get back to them by the following morning, or you will charge a premium rate for urgent work.
• Payment terms. Do you expect them to pay you each week, or put down a deposit? Make sure that’s clear.

Always remember that you can also say no as well! If you cannot do something or you aren’t comfortable, freelancers can say no! You aren’t an employee, you are running your own business.

How to F@@k up a LinkedIn Invite

 

I have a little bit of an issue with the LinkedIn Invite system, which is that it states it only wants you to connect with people you actually know, but then it also encourages you to invite anyone and everyone to become a contact of yours. It doesn’t seem to know what way it wants to go.

Because of the career path I have chosen, I get a lot of requests to connect with various people. I don’t mind that, but I do mind getting the standard form message which suggests you do not know me at all. Unless someone gives some details as to why they want to connect with me, I do not accept.

It doesn’t take long to personalize a message. Check out the profile and work out why you’d like to make the connection. I don’t use LinkedIn as a number growing network, I don’t think that’s the idea of it, it isn’t helpful to have hundreds of connections. What’s useful is to build relationships.

Not All Introverts Are Shy — Update the Cambridge Dictionary Definition

 

This is a change from my normal posts. For 2018 one of my goals is to get the Cambridge Dictionary to change their definition of introvert. As part of this I have started a petition and a hashtag #notmydictionary to help draw attention to the cause.

Not All Introverts Are Shy — Update the Cambridge Dictionary Definition

Stop the Misinformation

“Someone who is shy, quiet, and unable to make friends easily” is a commonly misconceived idea of an introvert and is also the Cambridge Dictionary definition of one. Quite the opposite is true. The objective definition of an introvert is someone who gets their energy from being alone, not necessarily someone who is shy.

 

I am  calling for a change with your help. The awareness of the true definition of an introvert is spreading, but ending the misinformation and negative connotation with being an introvert begins with changing the Cambridge Dictionary definition.

 

What You NEED To Do

● SIGN THE PETITION to formally recognize your acknowledgement of the need to change the Cambridge Dictionary definition of an introvert to focus on where the energy comes from, rather than outdated, subjective stereotypes.

● SPREAD THE WORD to your friends and family to grow awareness of the need for change and encourage others to take action.

● BE PROACTIVE by being mindful of your own use of the word “introvert” and perception of those who consider themselves to be introverted.

 

The Change You Will Inspire

The negative connotation with being introverted has a greater impact than simply assuming someone is shy or has bad social skills because they are an introvert. This connotation has physiological effect on everybody, shifting the perception of introverts and potentially affecting their lives and careers.

By changing the Cambridge Dictionary definition of an introvert, those who consider themselves to be introverted will face less pressure and the mental health challenges of dealing with the identity created for them by this misinformation.

Let’s do our part and sign the petition.

What does the word INTROVERT mean to you? Leave a comment and let me know. Sign the petition to get the objective definition in the Cambridge Dictionary! #notmydictionary

 

Happy world introvert day!

I LOVE Scrubs

 

I often get asked what I wear when I travel on planes, from friends and from others who travel around a lot, which is something that’s actually changed very recently. I was in the middle of my travels and staying with some friends – one of whom is a doctor – and while I washed my clothes they lent me some scrubs.

Absolute game changer!

Not only are they very comfy and made out of a soft material, they have a lot of pockets to store things such as travel documents, and an expandable waistband which of course is perfect when flying, because the air pressure changes causes everything in your body to expand. Before then I would always wear sweatpants or pajama bottoms, but I like the smarter look that scrubs give me.

Because of the cold and humidity up in the air I also like to have a lightweight hoodie and a scarf with me, which I can wrap around my nose to stop my skin for cracking. Another little tip for all the ladies would be to wear a shelf bra top, especially for longer trips, that way you don’t have to spend those long hours being incredibly uncomfortable!

Introverts in the Service Industry

 

There is a strong misconception that introverts can’t work in the service industry because they don’t like dealing with people. The small talk drains them and the thought of having to make endless conversation is too much… this isn’t necessarily the case.

Yes, there are undeniably areas in which extroverts excel, but the

same goes for introverts.
I used to work in Casino’s in England, which of course

means dealing with people. As an introvert I wouldn’t have been very good at dealing with the drunk Saturday night crowd who wanted to chat endlessly and needed to have the rules explained to them numerous amounts of times, but for the Tuesday afternoon, serious gambler crowd, I excelled. People actually asked for me to deal to them because of my efficiency and lack of small, much too personal talk.

In the higher end of the service industry, for waiting staff or bar tenders, not speaking is actually one of the preferences for the job. The clientele prefer someone who remains relatively silent and is fast and efficient… two traits that are very much associated with introverts. There’s absolutely no reason that introverts can’t work in the service industry, if the job is right.

Yes, I would like to be paid

Salary is not a perk

 

Today I want to talk to you about job postings… or more one I saw in particular for a travel company. It was a position to help people booking their travel, essentially like a travel agent, but the job could be done remotely.

All in all, it sounded like a good position… until I got into the details.
The perks of the job were listed as exposure to cultures, young and passionate entrepreneurs, remote working, and a start up salary. Much as I spotted some contradictions in the first few pointers, it was the last one that really irritated me. I do not think that a salary should be a perk. You should be paid for working, that’s not a benefit it’s the reason that you do it. Since no details were given about the salary there was no reason to believe that there was something special about it. It wasn’t a perk!

Reading the comments below the listing it put people off applying for the job because it was badly worded. This is why someone needs to proof read adverts such as this one to stop errors affecting potential employees. Plus, I think if a company wants to stand out they would be much better off posting an informative video from an employee talking about the job… the good points and the bad! That would be much more appealing, I’m sure.

5 of my pre-flight tips

flying tips

I travel a lot… which shouldn’t be surprising since I’m the travelling introvert! The current trip that I have up and coming will be 30 hours in total from my home to my destination, including 1 transfer shuttle, 3 flights – one of which will be 14 hours – 2 layovers, going over 13 time zones. Bit of a crazy one!

So this has led me to think about my top tips for when picking the right plane for your journey:

• Menu – some of the airline websites will let you look at the menu beforehand, ensuring that you can avoid a certain flight or airline if they’re serving food you really do not like, or you can sort out your own food.

• Reviews – because I do travel a lot I know what sort of plane I like and what amenities I need, but if you are newer to it you can always look for reviews. See what others have to say about space, etc, before you book. Seatguru is a great website to help you with this.

• Website – some airlines, such as Asiana Airlines, will give you reams of information to help you book. This can be more than just the menu; the time that food comes out, how regularly you will be fed, the movies on show… this will give you a much better clue how your trip will look.


• Wifi – Is Internet connectivity important to you at the airport? If so you might need to do some research. I found that JFK, one of the biggest airports in America, only offers Wifi for 30 minute intervals which was very problematic for me. The same goes for plug sockets. If you need these things, do your research first.

• Massage – I wear the DVT socks, you have to, but to be really careful with my blood flow I always check that there are massage facitilites when I’m doing a very long flight, even if it’s just the chairs! Anything to help it become a more pleasurable experience for me.

I always check the variety of flights available to me as well. Sometimes, if the airline gives me what I want, I’m happy to go for one long flight, but sometimes I prefer to book shorter flights for layovers. However, if I book these flights separately I always check that I’ll have enough time between each flight just in case I need to go through security again.

The more you travel, the more you’ll get used to what you need and want to make flying better for you.