Excited to head home for the holidays but stressing about the long flight, potential delays, managing jetlag, or other issues that come when you jet-set? Travel-specific meditations might be just the ticket to feeling calmer. We recently caught up with Khajak Keledjian, the founder and CEO of INSCAPE, a multi-platform meditation brand. Not only did we get the scoop on his innovative wellness company, but Keledjian also offered us five tips to make flying far less scary.

The Inspiration for Inscape (and Why it Works so Well)

“2013 was a big year for me,” Keledjian tells us. “I’d just sold Intermix to Gap. That was 20 years of my life — it was a big chapter. Then, I got married, which was grounding, and soon after, I went to Burning Man. I didn’t know what it was, I just trusted my friend when he asked me to come with him. Inside the temple at Burning Man there were people meditating and having reflective moments. It made me think, ‘Why aren’t there more places like this to have a similar experience?’” He continues, “Afterwards, my father got sick while he was in Armenia. I went there to be with him and while there, I also saw old monasteries. They have no electricity, which increases your awareness. It’s immersive — what you smell, feel, and hear. For me, that was a ‘wow’ feeling, and again I thought, ’How can I bring this feeling to New York?’” Keledjian tells us that he realized the key was to make experiences that bring you to that feeling. “Sometimes you need an oasis, and sometimes you need a tool,” he explains.

To bring his vision to life, Keledjian and his team drew inspiration from nature, history, technology, and art. Together, they created an app that helps people re-center and recharge quickly, no matter where they are. They also opened a flagship studio in Manhattan, making INSCAPE the first multi-platform meditation brand. “We’re a mirror of you: Our experiences are neutral and consistent so you can focus inward and reflect, with minimal distractions,” Keledjian explains. “We’ve taken inspiration from what’s come before and translated it for today with a contemporary approach to traditional practices.”

5 Helpful Ways to Ease Your Fear of Flying

To school us on exactly how meditation, breath, and an app can help someone overcome something they’re afraid of, Keledjian called on his app’s travel-specific section to give us five tips that’ll ease a fear of flying.

1. Get to the root of your fear before you fly. It’s a funny thing, but because our fears live inside our of minds, they’re often not based on reality. Keledjian says, “Become aware of where your fear is coming from and what’s causing you to feel afraid. Then, try to get to the root of your concern so you can approach that aspect of your travel experience.” For example, are you afraid of the plane crashing, or just afraid of how uncomfortable it is to be afraid? “You may realize that you’re just anxious about being out of your comfort zone,” Keledjian says. Not sure where to start? He offers us a handful of legit questions:

  • How often do you hear about plane crashes on the news, on routine trips? Not regularly.
  • How many people do you know who’ve had an emergency landing? Likely not many.
  • How big is the airline industry? Would air travel be so popular if it were unsafe? Probably not.

2. Distract yourself during your flight. Raising your awareness is great when you’re examining your fear before your flight, and distracting yourself while you’re flying can also be a good tactic,” Keledjian notes. Even more, there are tons of things you can do on an airplane, like reading, watching movies you’d never make time for otherwise, or keeping calm with an adult coloring book. Still feel anxious? “Focus on something other than what you’re nervous about,” Keledjian advises.

3. Tap into your breathing. Not only can breathing help you fall asleep faster and perform better, but it can also help you through stressful situations. “Breathing is the one thing that will stop a panic attack,” Keledjian affirms. “It’s also a quick and subtle way to calm yourself down.” To tap into the power of your breath, he suggests alternating nostril breathing to calm your mind and help you physically relax in just a few minutes. You’ll feel more balanced and much better in no time!

4. Remember that your anxiety is temporary. “Focus on your destination,” Keledjian reminds. “Visualize how happy, energized, and excited you’ll be to get there and start your trip.”

5. Try using an app to relax. Using an app that offers specialized meditation and relaxation experiences can be a huge help when it comes to reaping the benefits of breathing, visualization, and meditation to stay calm — INSCAPE (free on iOS) offers a travel-specific section as well as a sleep section, which is perfect if you really need to nod off after spending a few anxious nights awake (or even during your flight!).

Have you triumphed over a longtime fear? Tell us what you were afraid of and how you pushed past it on Twitter @BritandCo.

(Photo via INSCAPE)