Managing It All: 3 Stress-Relief Strategies for Event Staff

From securing a venue months in advance to hiring entertainment to choosing the event app you’ll use on the big day, event staff must juggle many tasks to ensure their events run smoothly. However, the multitude of responsibilities can make the role stressful.

With nearly 3 in 5 employees reporting negative impacts of work-related stress, event planners such as yourself need to take ownership of their mental health and seek out stress relief strategies that work for them.

That’s what this guide is for! Here, we’ll cover the top stress relief strategies. With them in mind, you’ll be able to confidently manage your mental health and ensure that you can handle your day-to-day responsibilities.

Why Is Stress Relief Important for Event Staff?

Before we explore the strategies, let’s take a closer look at why stress relief is so important for event planners and other event staff. According to Swaim Strategies, planning an event requires many steps, such as determining your event’s purpose, setting event goals, establishing your budget, deciding on event details, promoting the event, and following up with attendees afterward.

As an event planner yourself, you know that these steps can each be broken down into dozens of smaller tasks, resulting in a great deal of work on your plate. Aside from the workload, there are many other stressors that you may encounter, such as communication issues, meeting client expectations, tight deadlines, long hours, and more. In fact, event planning is considered the sixth most stressful job.

As stress builds up, it leads to several negative effects, including reduced motivation and job satisfaction, physical and mental health problems, low productivity, increased absenteeism, and interpersonal conflicts. All these effects can create a vicious cycle that results in lowered productivity and even more stress, eventually leading to burnout.

3 Stress Relief Strategies for Event Planners & Staff

You know that event planning is hard work. Because of that, you need to take stress management into your own hands and implement practices that will work for your unique needs. Consider the following three stress relief strategies and how they might help you become a more fulfilled and less stressed event planner.

1. Prioritizing Time Management

When you have a mountain of tasks to complete, it’s natural that you might not finish all of them within a single workday. That’s totally okay—as long as you’re making the most of your time at work with effective time management skills.

Here are a few ways you can better manage your time at work:

  • Choose a daily priority. Every day, identify your most important or most time-sensitive task. Commit to completing this task before your workday ends to ensure you stay on top of your responsibilities. This strategy will allow you to approach your work more mindfully.
  • Break big tasks into small ones. When faced with a large, daunting task, some professionals will feel overwhelmed, increasing their stress levels. To combat that, break any large task into its smaller parts. For instance, if you need to book a caterer for your next event, you can break the task into researching and identifying five top choices and requesting a consultation or quote from each.
  • Choose a time management system. You may benefit from having a dedicated time management system. For example, you might consider time-blocking, where you dedicate certain “blocks” of time to focus on certain tasks without allowing other tasks to distract you. This might look like setting aside two hours in the morning to research event registration software and dedicating the hour after lunch to answering and sending emails.
  • Automate repetitive tasks. Streamlining routine tasks can significantly boost your productivity by leaving more time, and energy, for larger projects. Using AI-powered tools, for instance, to automate processes like content translation, generating speaker descriptions, or wording email responses can save you hours each week. This speeds up your workflow and ensures consistency and accuracy, allowing you to focus on creative tasks that drive a greater impact on your attendees’ experience.

The most important aspect of time management is to stay realistic about your capabilities. Give each task the time it deserves and try not to underestimate how long they take—otherwise, you might reach the end of the workday without completing all the tasks you intended to.

If you’re looking for ways to reduce the time your tasks take, you may request that your company purchase software to help you do so. This is a common practice for businesses and nonprofits. For instance, a massage business might purchase massage therapy software to streamline bookings and a nonprofit might purchase a constituent management system (CRM) to help keep track of all its supporters.

As an event planner, you’ll probably benefit most from event management software. The right solution will help you organize memorable events, streamline your promotional efforts to increase ticket sales, manage attendee data, measure your event’s return on investment (ROI), and more.

Recommended Resource: 📺 Are you looking for cost-effective, easier ways to build and manage your events? Watch 8 short videos to learn how to deliver events in any format that engage attendees and offer sponsors more value—no matter your team size or budget!

2. Fostering Work-Life Balance

Aside from strategically managing your time at work, you must also foster a work-life balance that supports your priorities and needs. While it’s inevitable that you’ll have long days as an event planner, that doesn’t mean that you need to sacrifice your work-life balance every day.

Consider these ideas for finding a balance between your personal and professional life:

  • Take breaks when necessary. During the workday, don’t hesitate to take breaks if you need them. They can actually improve your productivity by increasing creativity and decision-making ability, resulting in higher quality of work. If you’re feeling stressed, take a quick 10-minute walk to clear your head and help you refocus.
  • Set boundaries with work. Allow yourself to fully disconnect from your work when you’re at home or taking personal time. To do so, set reasonable boundaries with work, such as not working through your lunch hour, not checking your emails or taking work calls when you’re out of the office, and limiting overtime hours to what is absolutely necessary for your role.
  • Take your vacation time. The best way to recharge is taking time away from your stressful work environment, which means taking your vacation time. Even if you’re worried about your workload, studies show that for every additional 10 hours of vacation time employees take, their year-end performance improves by 8%. If nothing else, think of it as a way to perform better in the future!

When it comes to finding the right work-life balance, your first step should be staying mindful of your needs. Constantly assess your work performance and stress levels and adjust your approach if you find your standard of work slipping or your stress rising.

3. Setting Aside Time to Relax

On the surface, this strategy may seem very similar to the previous one. However, there’s a difference between balancing your personal and professional lives and setting aside dedicated time to relax.

Make space for yourself to connect with your peers and participate in any hobbies that help you reduce stress and feel more positive. This could mean getting dinner with friends, going salsa dancing, watching a movie at home, or any other activity that you find relaxing.

You can even seek external sources to help you relax by treating yourself to massage therapy or booking time with a mental health counselor. These activities may even be covered by your health insurance (according to MassageBook, some massage therapists will accept insurance to make their services more affordable!), making it even easier for you to participate in them.

Ultimately, the way you relax is entirely up to you. What you need to do is identify what helps you unwind and completely detach from the stress of work.

Your Mental Health Matters

From worrying about vendors to gamifying your event for attendees, you have many responsibilities to stress over as an event planner. However, to ensure you deliver events that meet your goals and drive the impact you desire, you must take care of yourself. With these stress relief strategies, you’ll be well on your way to developing increased focus and productivity in your event planning, all while still being able to relax!