There is a new mile-high club and it is more satisfying than ever. In a world where finding focus and the right space to be productive is increasingly challenging, I have found that being confined to my seat in an airplane, miles into the sky, workspace that cannot be taken for granted.
The new mile-high club is one of continuing to work and channel your energy, even when you might be cut off from the rest of the world and even in the least probable productivity scenarios.
But there are a few aspects of working on a plane that you can use to your advantage in cultivating spaces and places where you can reach your productivity potential. Taking into account the distraction-free zone of an individual seat, surrounded by the sky, the possibilities are endless with what you can accomplish in-flight.
Despite recent airplane-based disruptions of dress codes and questionable misconduct, most experiences in the air can be entirely conducive to productivity. With access to WiFi and even in-flight power for charging devices, your small, but desk-equipped assigned seat can be the perfect place for getting focused. Adding ear plugs and climate control settings to the mix, you can create an environment that you are comfortable working in and one that gives you little to be distracted by, unless of course you are into reading airline promotional magazines.
Reframing the way you view your time on an airplane can allow you to use this distraction-free environment to your advantage. And because you will not be leaving your seat until the end of the flight, this controlled and quiet time can maximize the work you are able to achieve.
The epitome of 'me time'
Just as minimizing distractions can aid you in completing the many tasks that have been on your to-do list, being on an airplane, especially when alone, can provide you with independent time that is truly your own. Taking advantage of "me time" in the air can be great not only for your productivity, but also for your mental health. Just like with meditation, having time to be alone with your thoughts can help you to zero in on what you need to do and what you would like to accomplish. Cutting away the situational and interpersonal distractions working in an office or group context can provide, being by yourself on a plane and having even just a plane ride’s worth of “me time” should not be taken for granted.
Sky space is for thinking
And let’s not forget the soothing, yet constant hum of an airplane. There is nothing like the airplane-version of white noise to assist with concentration and focus. To some, this noise might seem annoying or loud, but you can use it to your advantage, using it to help you to channel your thoughts and maintain focus on a particular project.
Additionally, being in the air provides more than just the background mood-inspiring noise, but also the scenery and space to let your ideas run wild. Having the space to think, whether literally or figuratively, can make a huge impact on your ability to be productive and to get work done in the air. Some of my best ideas come from looking out into the sky and thinking of the ways that my digital health startup might be affecting those on the ground below. With the risk of sounding cliché, I sincerely believe that the thinking space offered through the context of being on a plane can change the way you think about work and productivity.
While movies and pop culture have pitched the mile-high club as one of promiscuity and sexual rendezvous, this new mile-high club, shifts the focus to that of productivity and concentration (still incredibly sexy), and is a practice that anyone can benefit from. Remember, the concentration and productivity strategies that you learn from your membership in this new mile-high club can help you to turn other work spaces into places that work for you.