There is no shying from the fact that communications can be a stressful industry. In fact, industry research found that as many as half of people working in PR, marketing and comms reported experiencing stress, anxiety or burnout on more than one occasion over the past 12 months.
Taking a step back to understand what helps us relax and unwind after a busy day is essential to helping us find our balance. So this Mental Health Awareness Day, we wanted to reflect on how we find our balance. And this is what the team shared:
“The steps that I personally take to relax and find balance will most likely be considered very ‘basic’ answers. When it comes to hobbies, mine revolve in no particular order around watching sport and spending time with my partner, family, friends and dog. But which one of these I choose to do to relax very much varies from week to week.
“One week I’ll want nothing more than to join my chosen few for some beers. Then the next, I’ll act like some kind of socially adverse mole that couldn’t think of anything worse than socialising and just wants to watch the Formula 1, Premier League or England play cricket, rugby and football.
“To me, it is exactly that mix that I think is so important. The freedom to choose when to recharge your social batteries and when to spend all your social energy on a mad weekend. And I’m thankful that those around me let me have the choice.”
“I think that I’m still one of those people that finds it difficult to know when to take a break, and when I can push myself just a little bit more. So taking time to ‘proactively’ relax is something I’m learning to do.
“But when I do, my way to relax starts with ensuring everything is in order so that my mind can rest. Then I completely switch off from the world, laying on the sofa with my cat, watching TV mindlessly and falling asleep whenever I want to.
“When I can’t drop everything, I enjoy taking time out to see friends for a nice meal. Deadlines and responsibilities feel a lot less pressing when I’m chatting to someone I care about over some food, sharing all of the good parts of my week, and hearing all of theirs. These little meetings put everything into perspective, and help me relax.”
“Relaxing for me is finding activities that are just so far from my day-to-day that it’s impossible not to switch off. One great example of this for me is listening to the Archers. When my Dad first suggested I start listening to it when I moved to London, I really didn’t expect to get so hooked. Initially, it just brought back memories of sitting in the back of the car as a child, while my mum would insist we wait until a scene finished before darting out to wherever we were meant to go next.
“But I soon realised that I found ‘in Ambridge’ a world so far away from the packed Central Line train I was commuting on that listening to stories about the cows escaping was a great mental break. So now, whether I’m on the tube, going for a run or cooking after a days work, I always find the time for my little escapes into Ambridge.”