When I’m stressed, I cook. Not always – the empty pizza box in my kitchen can attest to that. But often, when I finish work or on a weekend afternoon, I find myself rooting through my kitchen and wondering what I could make. There’s something about mechanically chopping onions, following a recipe and changing it as I go that feels meditative to me. It’s the opposite kind of attention that I put into my work. PR is fast-paced. On a given day, you might help a client respond to breaking news, participate in a real-time social chat, facilitate a media interview and draft an e-book, all while working on long-term projects like helping to launch a new startup. Those activities create momentum and fuel campaigns, generate leads and cause celebrations. It’s rewarding and refreshing, but to keep pace, you need to occasionally recharge.
Between traveling the globe and hunting for local happy hours, my coworkers take recharging seriously. Below are some of our tips for clearing your mind, getting an energy boost and finding the inspiration you need to get back to the grind:
1. Except for client SOS calls, stop responding to email between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m.
2. Finish the most stressful task on your to-do list, and stop worrying about it.
3. Disappear into the woods for a long walk.
4. Play a video game. (Call of Duty and Minecraft are a couple of Metis favorites.)
5. Have a glass of wine. (Or a few.)
6. Get a new perspective. (When you’re watching intense Netflix shows about true crime or an action movie with death-defying stunts, your days start to feel like a cake walk.)
7. Go for a run, go to the gym or finally take that workout class you’ve been thinking about.
8. Read a book or paint, even for just 10 minutes every day.
9. Plan a vacation.
10. Block out some time to spend relaxing with family or good friends.
11. Listen to music, and try not to focus on anything else.
12. Go shopping and treat yo’ self.
13. Turn off your phone, even for half an hour.
14. Order your ultimate comfort food for dinner.
15. Finally: remember that stress is temporary, and give your loved ones a heads up when you need extra support until things let up.
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