Did you know that “event planning” has been ranked among the top 10 most stressful jobs since 2012 with Forbes putting us at the high spot of number 5? With the hustle and bustle of the fall event season upon us, it’s important to remind my fellow event marketing folks to prioritize our physical and emotional health.
How can event professionals incorporate wellness into their planning and work-life balance?
Nationwide, issues of mental health are on the rise, and being subject to the anxieties and stressors of event planning can elevate these issues if we don’t incorporate steps to improve our coping skills. With more than 10 years of experience in the industry, I’m no stranger to the demands of our field.
I have been able to incorporate some practices into my work routine that other industry folks could consider for their wellbeing:
1. Set personal boundaries.
In this industry, the occasional fire drill is bound to happen. When these urgent things become more frequent, we need to put ourselves first and ask, “even though this is marked as urgent, can this be pushed to tomorrow?” Stopping to reflect before reacting to a last-minute request can put things into perspective for not only you but also your team to understand what is really urgent. This fire drill, or those dinner plans you made with your family three weeks ago?
2. Make time for yourself.
In the early years of my career, there were many times where I would pull all-nighters thinking I was making good use of my time and exemplifying “the best work ethic” by putting in an unsustainable amount of energy. Inevitably, this began to wear me out as I became slower and less focused due to pure exhaustion. When I decided to create a better work-life balance, I was able to get better sleep, eat healthier and squeeze in more workouts – all of which ultimately led me to become more productive and efficient than ever before.
3. It’s okay to ask clients for more time.
You’d be surprised at how many companies have prioritized wellbeing as part of their culture. If a deadline can be pushed a couple of days, asking the client for an extension is a reasonable ask. As long as there is still proper time for review and discussion, the client will appreciate your honesty. Clients aren’t telepathic. They don’t know what else is on your plate, so to them, it might be a reasonable timeframe, but if your team is not able to begin working on the ask for two or three days, your five-day turnaround just turned into a two-day turnaround. Speak up. It will make the experience better for both your team and your client, I promise you.
While these are just a few tips on how to improve your wellbeing, I encourage event professionals to keep wellness at the forefront of event planning. I’ve seen wellness ideas span from meditation and yoga to rehydration lounges equipped with nurses who can administer liquid IVs – the world is your oyster when it comes to employee wellness! At the end of the day, the work needs to get done, but why not do it in a fun and interactive way with a positive atmosphere to boost employee morale?
A healthy wellbeing and work-life balance is key for everyone – especially those in the event management field. Prioritizing wellbeing is better for you, your fellow employees, and last but not least, the client.