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How to avoid burnout – be a marathon runner and a Zen champion in one

  • Tips

People working in the event industry, organizing conferences, training courses, workshops, etc. undoubtedly work under great pressure. They suffer from chronic lack of time, solving the unsolvable problem on the daily basis. Coffee and energy drinks often become a basic part of the menu. The pressure is huge. As an event organizer, you know the feeling, right? As an event draws closer there is neither time for a rest nor a decent meal. And although many people in this industry like an adrenaline rush associated with this type of work, you have to remember there are limits to exploitation of your own body and mind. Long-term stress can have disastrous consequences – it can cause professional burnout, which in extreme cases may even end the career. So, in the long run, it is necessary to develop strategies to avoid occupational burnout. What can you do?

Sleep well

Chronic lack of sleep is one of the most frequent health problems of the event organizer. But you have to remember, if you’re stealing from yourself precious hours of sleep in which your mind can take a break from the daily chase, you put yourself in danger. In the long-term perspective, you’ll be more and more tired, even exhausted, you may struggle with concentration disorders, and those can lead you to the mistakes that can cost you a lot. However, it is not only the length of sleep that is important, but also – and perhaps above all – its quality. How to squeeze a maximum from a few hours sleep? First of all, keep the sleep hygiene: before you go to bed, air the bedroom, turn off the radio or TV set, remove mobile devices from your reach. Do not check “urgent” messages (all of them are urgent before the event) at bedtime or immediately after waking up. Let the bedroom become your asylum, which the outside world doesn’t reach. Take care that nothing disturbs your peace.

Start the day well

Before you get out of the bed to start a daily race, take 5–10 minutes for yourself: you can meditate, you can do some breathing exercises, you can also visualize yourself in a place that you find relaxing and tranquil.

Before you reach the phone or other device to check your emails, eat breakfast, drink tea, have some talk about non-work matters. Remember that if you postpone your breakfast “for later”, you may not have a chance to eat it at all. There is always something urgent to do – it that can simply make you forget about breakfast. There can happen also some stressful situation to deal with which can cause you appetite loss.

Take your time slowly

Work, duties, problems, stress, everyday fire fighting – you are constantly running in emergency mode. In this situation, the sentence “Hurry up slowly” sounds almost like an absurd. However, it doesn’t mean that you have to leave the event organization industry to become an eco-farmer. This means that you can try to verify your priorities to live more consciously and reduce the impact of stress on your life. Maybe it’s time for hiring someone new to your team who will take over some of your tasks? Maybe the technical support you use is no longer suited to your needs? Maybe you should choose a new online event registration software or change time management tools. Stop for a moment. Think about the solutions that would allow you to have more time to rest and regenerate. It often turns out that even seemingly small changes allow you to slow down. Then you can notice that the world outside your window is ready for spring, and the dinner eaten in a calm atmosphere tastes much better than the one consumed in a hurry.

Exercise, but do it in a reasonable way

Physical activity release endorphins – the hormones of happiness – and those can limit the fatal effects of stress. The most important is regularity of your exercises. Even when training seems to be the last activity you want to take after an exhausting day, it’s worth fighting your own resistance. Physical activity is necessary to maintain a healthy body and mind, but it has to be conducted wisely. If after a hard day at work you are throwing yourself on extreme sports – this is not a wise way. It is also not good when you set yourself goals, which will cost you another exhausting effort. Stressful work mode combined with extreme sports will only bring you closer to burnout. There is a variety of sport you can benefit from: yoga, swimming, marches or dancing, hiking. You just have to remember that the time spent on physical activity is your time of relaxation, not the next task or challenge.

Surround yourself with greenery

The research results indicate that in the natural environment the level of stress in humans decreases. Not everyone, however, can afford to take daily walks in the park or forest. So what can you do? Look around your office, water flowers that you forget about in your everyday rush, bring new ones. Appreciate every new leaf. May these green flowers become your everyday companions at work.

Go on vacation

Have you been on holiday recently? The organizers of events are often overworked. Their time of holidays is dictated by the rhythm of the training courses, conferences and workshops they organize. There is always something to do, there is always a problem to solve. However, a man is not a robot, and even the latter needs to recharge the battery. To avoid professional burnout, you should manage your own rest. Well spent holiday is an investment in your own health, strength and readiness for further work. You don’t have to spend your vacation on the Caribbean or climb alpine peaks. It is important because this is a time of relaxation away from your phone and the internet.

Occupational burnout makes work more and more tiring. Exhaustion and discouragement keep progressing. To prevent this condition, it is worth knowing how to recognize the signals that our body sends and how to take an action. It’s worth to remember that chronic stress is not only harmful to your health – in extreme cases, it can end a professional career.