The Sailor’s Guide To Staying Calm During a Storm


“Time passes by pretty quickly.” That’s what Zizoo Skipper Saša Drobac says when we ask him how he spends long days in isolation. Of course, for many of us in self-quarantine this week, time feels like it’s ground to a halt. 

To figure out how to stay calm under pressure, pass the time, and live in a confined space for longer-than-usual stretches of time, we turned to the experts: the DayDreamers skippers (aka, Zizoo’s trusted skipper network). Floating on a beautiful boat in the Adriatic Sea might not be the same as a week spent in a bedroom, but we think their expertise in high-pressure situations might come handy right about now. 

So here’s what Daydreamers co-founder Maksimilijan Žagar, skipper Saša Drobac, and hostess Lara Culovic had to say. 

And by the way, you can check out our Covid-19 statement and updated refund and rescheduling policy here

How to stay calm under pressure:

If Saša Drobac is in a boat and faces an unexpected storm, he first combats any acute feelings of anxiety with deep breathing. “I inhale through my nose, then do a long exhale through my mouth. It calms my heart rate and gets my mind off the panic and focuses it on the breathing.” Once he’s taken steps to get everyone into life jackets and secure the boat, he tries to hone in on the silver lining. “You know, it’s not every day that you experience a storm like this. You can look at it as an adventure. It’s important to stay cautious, but it’s just as key to stay positive.” 

How to act under pressure

First of all, Max Žagar makes sure to only recruit the most capable people for his skipper company. He knows that unexpected situations will always come up, no matter the weather forecast or the skippers’ skill level. He looks for people who can combine strong expertise with a calm attitude. “Because at the end of the day, everything is always going to be alright.” 

How to keep yourself entertained:

If you’re starting to feel like being in quarantine is unbearable, and you have no idea how you’ll get through the next few weeks, then take a lesson from some of the greatest outdoors activities out there.

The popular sport of fishing pretty much involves a lot of nothing, and it’s one that many travellers share. The other popular option is another “do-nothing” activity: Stargazing. “There’s very little light congestion when you’re out in the islands, so you can see the stars clearly,” says Max. “Lots of people take a dinghy and a bottle of wine, and just float beneath the stars.”

How to eat right and get a proper amount of rest:

As a hostess, Lara Culovic knows exactly how to prepare nutritious meals on the go. She makes sure to always stock on the shelf-stable essentials such as potatoes, flour, rice, pasta, oils and seasoning, and then fill up with fresh food as she goes.  

She also likes to enhance the cooking experience by treating her meals like creative opportunities. 

“Playing with food is like playing with paint colors. It’s fun to experiment with whatever foods and ingredients you have at the particular moment while keeping an open mindset. It’s like creating a little piece of art work of your own” the art academy-trained hostess says.

As far as sleeping goes, Lara advises plenty of exercise for the best sleep. “You have to get your energy out of your system, whether it’s through a HIIT workout from Youtube, weight training, pilates or yoga. It’s easier to do a proper workout in your house than it is on the boat, so appreciate the great opportunity of having various ways for keeping yourself active even when isolated.” 

See below for two of her favorite simple recipes to prepare with ingredients you’ve already stocked up on, and an easy at-home workout.

1. Pasta with tuna sauce

drizzle of olive or vegetable oil

1-2 chopped garlic

1/2 chopped onion

2 x 400g caned chopped tomatoes 

2 x cans canned tuna in oil

Seasoning (pepper, salt, sugar/honey)

Heat the oil in a frying pan or a skillet, then add garlic and onion.

Cook for a few minutes on medium heat.

Prepare another big pan of water for pasta, bring it to boil and cook pasta according to the directions or until al dente. I vote for al dente!

Add tuna to the first pan and stir everything for one minute, then add two whole cans of tomatoes, reduce the heat, simmer and stir occasionally ’till the sauce-like consistency.

Add pepper, salt and one one teaspoon of honey.Drain pasta when cooked, add it to the sauce or serve separately, adding pasta first and the sauce second. 

Enjoy it with some fresh green salad on the side!

2. Easy chicken salad 

2 baked chicken breasts, skin removed and chopped

1/2 finely diced red onion

1 finely diced red pepper

1 crushed clove of garlic

cherry tomatoes sliced in halves

1 grated carrot

green salad

1 yoghurt – greek or regular

(light mayonaisse by choice)

tablespoon of mustard

extra virgin olive oil



a little bit of honey

Marinate the chicken (garlic, red paprika, salt, oil…) and grill it in a pan. When done, set aside.

Put all of the vegetables in one bowl and mix the sauce ingredients in another. 

Add or reduce seasoning depending on your preferences, mix everything up and enjoy!

A HIIT body weight workout you can do at home

Warm up with butt kicks, high knees, or jumping jacks.
Set the timer on: 45 sec on / 15 sec off 

1. Jumping jacks
2. Squats
3. Burpees
4. Push ups
5. Mountain climbers

Repeat the circuit 5 times. 

For up-to-date information on best prevention practices, consult the WHO website.