A little over a year ago, Emily Doig flew 15 hours across the Pacific, from her hometown of Melbourne, Australia, to Los Angeles. Then she rented a car and drove more than two hours to San Diego, navigating Southern California traffic — and then she had to get to work.
“I realized I had to be a fully functioning human being for the next three days with my peers,” she says. “It was a real awakening for me.”
Doig has been traversing the world for more than 20 years, which has taught her that there’s no point in pursuing balance, but instead, work-life blend.
Her travel experiences inspired her to start a company called GlowJetter, which sells nutritional supplements that help travelers overcome jet lag, sleep soundly and re-energize. “It’s taking a holistic approach to travel rather than arriving somewhere and feeling like rubbish,” she says.
Here’s how she organizes her time — whether traveling or otherwise — to blend her work life and personal life into one happy, healthy life overall.
Sticking to a sleep schedule
For Doig, finding the right work-life blend begins with rest. She avoids the all-night parties following her all-day meetings.
“In the early days of my career, I would be the first person at the bar, networking, and the last person to leave,” Doig says.
Now, she prioritizes both her business and her sleep. Although it doesn’t always occur to travelers during the excitement of trip planning, getting a good night’s sleep is one of the most important factors in choosing a place to stay. Doig appreciates the Sleep Advantage initiative at Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts.
It emphasizes premium bedding, quiet zones, and even aromatherapy kits. Unless there’s a pressing guest request, housekeeping and engineering activities don’t take place between the hours of 9:00 pm and 10:00 am, and wake up calls are guaranteed.
Mindfully managing meetings
Doig also manages her meeting schedule so there is always “me time.” This often means having brief, but focused, encounters with colleagues and stakeholders. She’s learned that the amount of actual work that often gets done in hours can get done in minutes with a mindful approach.
Managing a meeting is also about managing the environment. Doig says she likes the effort Crowne Plaza has put into its meeting space offerings, with modules and rooms designed for both work and play, customizable to groups of any size or need. For instance, Crowne Plaza guests can reserve “The Studio” by the hour, which features a fully connected conference table, a lounge area and food and beverage service at the touch of a tablet.
Maintaining energy levels
Achieving a healthy work-life blend involves getting the right amount of physical activity and eating the right foods in addition to getting plenty of sleep.
“People are more aware of how they feel and how they want to feel,” Doig says of today’s travelers. In fact, she built her business around that fact. “I really want people to experience their full selves when they’re on the road and not feel compromised or unable to enjoy themselves fully.”
That’s why it’s important to Doig that a hotel have modern fitness facilities and can offer guests a complete menu of healthy foods. Crowne Plaza meets these demands with state-of-the-art exercise equipment and fast, fresh meal options that are available any time of day.
Staying connected to family
Posting photos on social networks, chatting online using apps such as Skype or Zoom, or even just sending texts or emails makes family communications so efficient, travelers can readily keep up in the moments between meetings.
“It’s easier than it’s ever been because you can literally carry your family around with you in your pocket when you’re traveling,” says Doig. Even a momentary ping on an app can remind loved ones you’re always thinking of them, no matter where you are. Quality family time is always just a phone call away — first thing in the morning, between meetings or any time.
Here, connectivity is key. Having a good international calling plan and staying places with reliable WiFi can make every place seem like home. This is why Crowne Plaza places a focus on connectivity.
Doig also plans many of her trips with the intention of getting together with family and friends in different parts of the world. “There’s never any one reason for me to go somewhere,” Doig says. “I’ll always try to reach out to reach out to people to make the most of my time.”
Finding time for tourism
Achieving a healthy work-life blend means making every business trip a leisure trip, too.
Work is no longer a 9-to-5 endeavor. Increasingly, people are tethered to their work with smartphones and have to be on call in several time zones each day. But they can untether as well.
“If I’m in New York, I’ll go the Whitney (Museum of American Art),” she says. “I’ll spend two hours there and not feel guilty about it because it’s inspiring the work that needs to be done.”
In fact, Doig has found a way to make leisure travel an integral part of her business plan. Doig is always creating content for the GlowJetter website, which includes writing travel guides and reviews of restaurants, museums, and galleries.
“I couldn’t just sit here and sell a product that I’ve never tried,” she explained. “For me it’s about experiencing the things that my customers are also seeing and feeling.”
Travel as a way of life
Many business travelers count their time as money and miss out on the life-enriching opportunities around them. Doig encourages them to check out of the time-is-money mentality for at least a while on each trip.
“It’s being very mindful that you’ve got the work to do, but that you also have the opportunity to enjoy it along the way.”
Doig says she feels grateful that she’s found time to see the world on her many business travels. It’s made her life an adventure. “I’ve been fortunate enough to visit every continent but Antarctica,” she says, “and maybe one day I’ll warm up to the idea of getting down there.”