We’re living in an incredibly stressful world, and mindfulness in the event industry is hard to find at the best of times. The ONS reported, “Over a third (37.4%) of adults in Great Britain said that the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic had affected their wellbeing”. That’s a pretty high number! We’ve gone from needing to practice mindfulness because of business, to now facing the same struggles but in a completely different way.
We should never underplay the importance of mindfulness in the event industry. It helps us perform better, live more peacefully, and ultimately enjoy life more. Who doesn’t want that?
Admittedly, our ideas below aren’t going to be completely new concepts to you, but the detail might be. So before you write this post off as another airy-fairy list of reasons you should have a bath, please read on.
Social media limits
As we continually spend more time on social media, our brains are falling into deeper traps of comparison, judgement, and lacking in compassion. I don’t struggle too much with those things, but I do feel like I’ve completely wasted my evening if I spend it scrolling through Instagram.
So to combat that, I’ve set up some selective limits on my iPhone apps.
- Downtime set between 8 pm-7 am. Downtime blocks out most apps. I can get onto safari for one minute if I quickly need to google something, but everything else is blocked. If I’m struggling to sleep, I like listening to rain noises, so Spotify and calls are the only exceptions.
- Social media limit to 1hr30 a day. That’s not a lot for someone who works A LOT on social media. So now I use the platforms on my computer when I’m working. I’ll reply to DMs, interact with other accounts, and reply to comments on my laptop. It’s helped me create some separation.
- Blocked calls and texts outside of 8:45-6:30. A few days ago, I answered a work call while I was running, and it put me in SUCH a mood. I regretted doing it as that time is almost sacred to me. Now that I’ve blocked calls and texts, I only get comms from a few people outside of those hours. For me, that’s my five closest friends, my partner, brother, and parents. That’s it. Any messages that are sent during your downtime come through at 8:45 the next day.
I’d encourage you to have a play with the limit settings on your phone and see the difference it will make to your wellbeing.
Run… but differently
I don’t want to come across as one of those preachy running people because, to be honest with you, I HATED running until about three months ago. I always wanted to be a runner. I admired the people who don all the gear at 6 am, striving to make themselves better. But every time I tried it, I hated every second. Everything hurt, and I couldn’t turn my brain off.
Then I read Bella Mackie’s book, Jog On. It completely changes everything I’d thought about running. It challenged all the thoughts I had learnt through the media and negative self-talk. I’d highly recommend you get a copy.
Now, I run nearly every day because of how it makes me feel. Some days I run 1k, some days I run 5k. I run slowly because I wouldn’t say I like pushing myself too much, and I want to be comfortable. I’ll probably never run a marathon, or even a half because 5k is about my bordem limit. Sometimes I sing, jump, skip, whatever. My focus is always to have a good time.
I can’t tell you what a change this has made to my mental health. I always feel good on run days for the whole day, not just the post-run high. It’s the only thing that gives me the same thrill as booking a client or finishing an event you’ve worked on for months.
Get out the house
Leaving the house is particularly pertinent at the moment considering we’re all still working from home, but is probably my most relevant way to practice mindfulness in the event industry. Eventprofs are used to being out and about, continually travelling between site visits, meetings, tastings, showcases. You name it.
So understandably, spending so much time at home is quite a shock to the system. Our office is in central London, and I don’t always fancy the train and tube commute. Instead, when I need some time out of the house, I go to one of our local coffee shops and tie it in with a walk. Right now I’m writing this from the upmarket basement of The Cheese Room in Rochester, bliss!
Just escaping the walls, you’re always staring at will make a massive impact on your mood and well being. Wifi is free, and a cup of tea costs no more than £2. I’m in a coffee shop for probably about 2-3 afternoons a week; it’s made an enormous difference to me.
Sleep combined with yoga
Everyone says yoga. But there are so many different types, from the super stressful high-intensity stuff to relaxing wind down classes. Plus, I don’t think I need to explain to you the benefits of a good night sleep. It’s one thing I really can’t live without.
For those evening where everything is feeling too much, or you’re not sure how you’re ever going to fall asleep, try Soul Sretch’s Sound Asleep class. For a small fee, the class leader, Holly, with have you nodding off before you’ve even thought about it.
The session starts with some meditation, followed by light yoga, finishing off with a sound bath to send you into a soothing sleep. All from the comfort of your bed. What could be better!? The first time I did the class, it felt like I’d just left a spa. I’d highly recommend it to anyone who feels they need to switch off and unwind.
So there you have it, my top tips and suggestions for being a bit more mindfulness in the event industry. If you have any tips which work for you, please share them over on our Instagram post. You never know who they might help.
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