The captain comes on the overhead,
<in a smooth coffee-soaked voice> “This is your Captain speaking. We will be cruising at an altitude of 30,000 feet in route to [destination]. We found some smooth air, so we’re going to turn OFF the fasten seatbelt sign. Please feel free to move about the cabin and, thank you for flying Delta”
Choice sets in…
Most planes now are equipped with wi-fi and if a traveler chooses, they can stay connected to the world and the web anywhere above 10,000 feet, no matter how long the journey. Or, you can choose to take a moment for yourself.
I’m going to go out on a limb and say, I probably fly more than 98% of the adult population (I was going to say 99%, but that seems like a LOT). It can be hard. Odd hours and time away from the family are part of it. However, every challenge has a silver-lining.
Flying gives me the unique opportunity to unplug and reflect.
Something magical happens when the jet engines on a plane growl and the jet climbs through the clouds revealing a beautiful landscape scaling as far as the eye can see. Sometimes it is a sunrise, sometimes it is a sunset. Other times its clouds and the heavens for eternity.
Funny thought…it never storms above the clouds.
Peaceful. Peaceful mind.
Most of my travel is done by myself, or should I say, no one I really know, is sitting right next to me.
For the most part there is no one to bother me. Airplane mode!
No one to interrupt my thoughts. Honestly, think about the limited amount of time you had with uninterrupted thought today?
**notification, post, like, retweet, snap, snap, snap, retweet, instagram like. Text, Text, email…God forbid (A PHONE CALL!!!)**
For most, the answer is slim to none.
It’s become a conditioned response with my travel schedule.
We climb above the clouds,
I open the window (cuz I’m a “window seat” guy).
I peer out into God’s beautiful creation.
Above the clouds, everything is simple. Maybe more importantly, I can’t go anywhere. I’m on a plane and I’m assigned to only one seat. Instead of complaining about it… enjoy it.
Gratitude sinks in.
I take time to reflect on where I am, where I’m going, and look back at where I’ve been.
Inevitably I literally tear up.
I’m not full blown crying, but I’m full of positive emotion and gratitude. I end my emotional cycle with a flood of fulfillment and excited energy. Usually travel involves something exciting to be conquered on the other end. What better way to start the journey?
I always preach taking time to think.
Flying gives me built in ability to do just that.
Most importantly, the pause for the quiet gives me time to reflect. That’s the real lesson.
ACTION ITEM: Try, hard as it may be, to find some quiet alone time. Maybe even book a flight?
Stop. Think. Be grateful.