How to prioritize self-care when you’re traveling on business

It’s crucial to make time for yourself — because if you don’t prioritize self-care between business meetings and networking dinners, no one else will.

If you regularly spend multiple weeks traveling for work, you’re probably well-versed in feeling uncontrollably burnt out. But it’s crucial to make time for yourself — because if you don’t prioritize self-care in between all those business meetings and networking dinners, no one else will.

Here are four ways to give back to yourself when you can’t recharge at home every night before heading back to work.

Read a book

When was the last time you cracked open a book or powered up your Kindle reading device for fun? It may have been a while, but the good news is that it’s never too late to start again. The trick is making the time for it when you can.

So start reading during the ride to your destination, in between meetings, and/or before you hit the sheets in your hotel at night.

But you don’t have to tote around a paperback or hardcover title with you at all times to get some reading in. You can listen to audiobooks if that’s more your style.

Listen to a podcast

Whether you’re consulting or doing any other job that requires you to hop on a plane or a train almost every week for work, being on the road can be lonely. So why not take some of your favorite people with you on your phone or laptop?

I’m talking about podcast hosts, of course. All it takes is one episode (or maybe even less) to get hooked on a podcast or three. So find one that’s relevant to your interests — whether it’s professional content or simply for pleasure — and listen away. Once you feel attached to the people and the topics being discussed, you know you’ve found one that works for you.

Outlets like Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify and Soundcloud offer a variety of podcasts for you to get lost in while you’re away from the office but still working.

They provide mindless entertainment. What’s not to love?

Enjoy the local cuisine, but don’t overdo it

Definitely try to treat yourself to some of the best food and drinks your area has to offer without breaking the bank, but don’t make too many unhealthy choices. You don’t want to make yourself sick— especially when you’re away from home for a while.

So splurge here and there, but make sure to load your meals with greens and protein, and to drink extra water. Also set a reminder on your phone to take your vitamins if it’s hard for you to stick to a wellness routine, and get as much sleep as possible.

Take a walk around town

Get some fresh air and walk around the area. Also do some research on local attractions you can visit if you have a little free time. Getting out of the office or hotel will help clear your mind when you’d rather be vacationing in the place you’re working from remotely.

If you want to take your work with you, you could also consider having walking meetings like the ones Apple CEO and tech mogul Steve Jobs was known for. This can really help break things up a bit.

Jane Burnett|is a reporter for Ladders and can be reached at jburnett@theladders.com.