Five tips for professional resilience

Sydney-based keynote speaker and author Heidi Dening reveals her tips for riding the ups and downs of the business events industry.

Resilience is a crucial component of being able to work effectively in the events industry because it enables individuals to swiftly adapt, remain calm under pressure and creatively solve unexpected challenges.

As event professionals, you have already proven how resilient you can be but that doesn’t mean you aren’t at risk from becoming overwhelmed and exhausted due to issues around staff shortages, supply chain disruptions and unrealistic expectations from everyone.

By elevating your professional resilience, you can combat some of the impact of this fast-paced, ever-changing business environment.

To do this, I’d like you to think of your resilience as a bucket and the water in that bucket represents all your strengths and capabilities.

When times are good, our resilience buckets are strong, which helps us to remain productive, capable and confident at work.

But when times are wobbly, our buckets become fragile and little rusty holes start forming. As we know with little rusty holes, they soon become big gaping holes and all our strengths and capabilities start leaking out.

We might feel lethargic, we can’t focus, we make poor decisions and silly mistakes.

Sustaining a career in this industry so you can continue to create meaningful and innovative experiences for your clients means proactively keeping your bucket strong must be a priority despite your full inboxes and long to-do lists.

This “Strong Bucket Formula” will give you the foundations for career resilience.

1) Be still for 10 minutes a day

Try to carve out 10 minutes of stillness in your day so your nervous system is calmed, which will help you make more effective decisions.

Perhaps start by sitting quietly with your coffee first thing in the morning – without your phone – because it could be the last time you get a moment to yourself all day.

2) Find joy for one hour a week

I’m not talking about the incidental joy I hope you get every single day, rather one hour of joy you habitually schedule into your calendar.

Maybe it’s walking in nature, mentoring a new staff member, studying a topic you’re passionate about or volunteering at your local animal shelter.

3) Chill out for one day a month

Choose one day a month where you can sleep in, stay in your jim-jams, slouch on the couch, immerse yourself in a good book or have a binge on Netflix.

If your responsibilities don’t allow you to take a whole day once a month, please don’t let that stop you. Perfection is a fairytale. Start with a couple of hours and build on that.

4) Enjoy a long weekend once a quarter

This doesn’t have to cost a lot of money. You can have a staycation, take a picnic in the park with your friends, go to a gallery, see a show or drink cocktails in a swanky bar.

5) Always connect with what’s important in your life

This might be family, career progression, travel, fitness, art or spirituality. Perhaps you need to connect more with people who inspire you, bring a smile to your face and some warmth to your heart.

This “Strong Bucket Formula” is the foundation to performing better at work because it gives you the capability to be more creative, make better decisions and be seen as the talented event professional you are.

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