How This PR Pro Learned To Beat Stress

Posted on May 17, 2018

By Lila Razzaqui

By Lauren Hillman

Ah, the fast-paced PR life. If you’re not scrambling to pull together a press release while simultaneously pitching commentary on the latest breaking news story and developing new strategies for conquering the evolving digital media landscape (all before your first cup of coffee, mind you) have you really lived?

As much as I’d like to tap my inner Samantha Jones and spend my days networking while sipping cosmos, real PR is far less glamorous. It requires grit, perseverance and teamwork to keep the wheels turning and to deliver exceptional results to clients.

And although it is incredibly gratifying to see the fruits of your labor translate into business success for the companies you work with, PR is stressful and not for the faint of heart. There’s a reason that PR routinely makes CareerCast’s list of the top 10 most stressful jobs.

So how do I prevent the pressures of tech PR from swallowing me whole? It’s not easy, but I’ve adopted a few tactics to find balance and channel my inner yogi to eliminate burnout and get me through even the most difficult moments.

Schedule in time for mental (and physical) health
Don’t just talk about that gym membership that you NEVER use because work piles up. Hold yourself accountable by blocking time on your calendar for daily meditation and exercise. Sometimes my best ideas come once I’ve stepped away from my computer. What’s more, when I’ve reached mental clarity after meditating or exercising, I’m more productive, more positive and a better all-around PR pro. The correlation between mental/physical health and work product is real.

Cultivate a hobby outside of work
Whether it’s photography, cooking, or volunteer work, develop a non-work-related hobby to get you out of the office and into the real world. Hobbies are known to eliminate stress by allowing you to engage in something that brings you joy. It’s important to look for activities outside of work that enrich your life and provide fulfillment. Not to mention, hobbies are a great way to meet people and expand your understanding of society.

Promote yourself to “CEO”
CEO is a state of mind. If you hold yourself accountable and recognize the impact your role makes on your teams and your company, you will eliminate burnout by finding more purpose in what you do. 

Be Grateful
Achieving balance is all about finding perspective. Adopt a “3 Gratitudes” journal and take time each evening to jot down three items you are grateful for. You can get creative (“I am grateful for Philz and whatever they put in their coffee to make it SO POTENT”) or more thoughtful (“I am grateful for my ability to work to provide a great life for me and my family”). Just spend five minutes each evening to take a step back and remind yourself that there is so much to be thankful for.

Find joy in what you do
Why do we take ourselves so seriously? As I often preach: “It’s PR not ER.” We’re not saving lives here. So it’s important to laugh through the tough times and find joy in your work and the fulfillment it brings to your professional life. Each day, recognize that you chose a profession that is sometimes stressful, but also so rewarding and exhilarating!

You may be a ball of stress today. But if you’re not committed to finding wellness and balance in you’re life, you are bound to live in purgatory. Take equilibrium seriously and make your wellness a priority in 2018 and always. You will not regret it.

Lauren drives day-to-day strategy and execution for Offleash’s cybersecurity practice, and has been driving successful PR programs for B2B technology PR programs for the past six years. She also works on Offleash’s social responsibility team, Offleash.CARES. Contact Lauren at lauren@offleashpr.com