If you have been living under a rock and have not seen our #SparkBTS this past June, well let me fill you in. Spring is by far the busiest season for us at Spark. In true form, we like to affectionately call this Spring Slaughter.
Spring Slaughter is a marathon, not a sprint. And a part of crossing the finish line, like any marathon, requires prep, pacing, and a few tricks of the trade. This isn’t my first Spring Slaughter, and I’ve learned some valuable lessons along the way – in this case, and for the love of alliterations, let’s call them survival skills.
1. SNACK SMART
Skipping meals because of a busy schedule can lead to a bad mood or binge eating. Make sure to keep some high-protein snacks like protein bars or almonds in the office or registration desk to keep you full longer. There might not be a lot of time to eat on-site, but it’s important to step away for 5-10 minutes to fill your tummy, preferably with something healthy. Or you may have the opposite issue where you are tempted by all of the Fairmont pastries. It's nice, but remember - everything in moderation!
2. SUN GOD
Leave the dingey hotel basement and see the sun! I’m serious. You need Vitamin D to function as a charming, well-informed, event professional. Volunteer to go out on that Starbucks or Staples run, or step out for some fresh air. A touch of sun has been known to increase beta-endorphin levels which activates feel-good processes in the brain. Basically, what this means is that the sun makes us happy. And who doesn’t need a bit of happiness on site?
3. AGUA ALWAYS
More often than not, after long days, and limited hours of sleep, I have woken up in the middle of the night parched and in need of some water. Running your mouth under the hotel bathroom tap may do the trick, but let’s try to avoid getting there in the first place. Water is the key to keeping yourself functioning during your function! Bring a water bottle with you everywhere, and continue to sip on it throughout the day! If you do not enjoy the simple refreshing taste of water (ahem – Anh), turn it into spa water by adding lemon, cucumber, even some berries. Then when you close your eyes you can pretend you’re at the spaaaaaaah. Open your eyes and… well, sorry.
4. SWAP STILETTOS FOR CHIC FLATS
This one might make some of you cringe, but let’s be real guys, blisters on Day 1 is a recipe for disaster. How will you complete that little black dress at the formal reception if you are limping from your stilettos? If you are still shaking your head, let’s meet in the middle – just promise me that you will plan your footwear accordingly. If you know you will be wearing heels at a formal reception in the evening, wear some nice flats in the morning. If you will be applying 50 star-shaped decals in 40°C heat at a resort, it’s time for some sensible shoes. Be smart. When you make it to Day 21, your feet will thank you.
5. RAMP UP THE SUPPLEMENTS
Since we usually average 5 or 6 hours of sleep a night, I make sure to take all my supplements! Take your omega-3’s, probiotics, and always take a multi-vitamin for an immune boost. After planes, trains, and automobiles (and musty air conditioned hotel rooms!), the last thing you want to do is get sick. Sniffles and coughing are not a great way to greet delegates at the registration desk. If by chance you do get sick – pop those cold meds ASAP!
6. TAKE A SECOND.. OR TWO
Always remember: you are a human being, not a human doing. Take a moment to just be. Sing in the shower, FaceTime your loved ones back home, go for a quick run, read a chapter (or the same paragraph over and over) in your book, or simply lay in your comfy Waldorf Astoria California King bed and stare at the ceiling. You’d be surprised how effective a quick break can be to help you put life into perspective. Like I said, it’s a marathon, not a sprint!