How Self-Care Can Make You a Better Professional

By Shelby Bradford
January 15, 2020

Public relations is an ever-evolving, exciting and rewarding industry, however, it can also be demanding and stressful at times. As PR pros, we crave the stimulation of our jobs and will do whatever it takes to excel and make our clients proud, but we also need to be sure to make our own mental health a priority so we can continue to produce great work.

It’s critical for people in our line of work to have time to decompress. Why? Because of the nature of PR, we are going 100mph from the time we get to the office to the time we leave, and because of the mobility of our jobs, it can even be hard to fully disconnect once we’re home. But consider this: when we’re depriving ourselves of down-time and rest, we’re also depriving our clients of our best possible work and, in some cases, our full attention.

“Self-care” – defined as any activity that improves our mental, emotional or physical health – looks different from person-to-person, but one of the biggest elements of taking care of your mind is having the ability to disconnect and reset. Communication experts: check out these tips on how to refresh your mind.

Set aside time to be away from your computer and phone

Limiting total screen time can be challenging since much of what PR professionals do at work requires a computer, but we CAN set limits at home. Try putting your phone down, your computer away and turning your TV off for a few hours in the evening to let your eyes and mind relax.

Find something that brings you peace and then do it a lot

Whether it’s running, yoga, coloring or cooking, find something (or a few things!) that bring you clarity and do it as frequently as you can. Quick reminder: self-care doesn’t have to be expensive. Going for a quick walk outside is sometimes all it takes to reset and get our creative juices flowing again. Business Insider took a deeper look into why taking breaks outside is so important for today’s professionals.

Self-care doesn’t have to stop when you’re at work! It’s just as important, if not more important, to be conscientious of your mental health when you’re in the office.

Learn to ask for help and when to say “no”

There’s nothing wrong with raising your hand and saying you need some help. There’s also nothing wrong with saying your plate is full. By learning to do both of these things, you’ll begin managing your workload more effectively and will also be learning to prioritize your mental wellbeing over having an uber-heavy workload.

Know your limits and be proactive about meeting them

When you’re starting to feel unproductive, sometimes you just need to walk away for a minute. Have a place to go to decompress when you need to, even if it’s going on a 15-minute coffee run. Don’t wait to meet your limit before taking care of yourself – be proactive! Know when you normally start losing focus and choose to take a break well before you meet that limit.

As communicators, our jobs require focus, attention to detail and What does self-care look like for you? How will you prioritize it in your life to help you excel at work?