Event planning is a stressful job. It really is. And that’s why some manageable stress prevention tips can make all the difference.
There is a lot of planning (that, of course, you have done), but it all needs to be properly executed. That is what stresses most people out. Not the lack of confidence in their own abilities, but the fear that other people do not share your same standards.
As in most cases, prevention is easier than mitigation. So here are a few things that you can do to not get quite as stressed. Keep in mind this does not mean that you will never have any worries, but when you get stressed, you will know what to do.
Why do you get stressed?
Preventing stress means understanding what will stress you out and figuring out how to adapt beforehand.
Planners get stressed out not only when something goes wrong but also when they think something may go wrong. Things may not always go according to plan, but your job is to minimize potential problems and find fixes.
So stress prevention starts way in advance of your event.
Stress Prevention Means Being Reliable
Do what you say you are going to do. Show up when you say you will be there. That’s it.
It is tough to trust that your planner will make your event perfect if they are always late and forgetting what they had promised. And when clients feel stressed, they pass that on to you, the event planner.
Of course, there will sometimes be a freak snowstorm or a sick family member that slows you down. But that should be the exception. Having event planning software can keep your appointments, and reminders close at hand.
Also, follow through with what you agree to with your vendors. If there is a specific time that you need to be there to set up, be there at that time, not 20 minutes late. If you are supposed to leave a venue in the same way as you found it, just do it. If you hold up your end of the deal, you’ll find that others will have your back when needed.
Communicate. A Lot.
Per the examples above, if you will be late for a meeting, call or message the people who are waiting for you. If you have a specific reason why you can’t leave a venue as you found it (i.e., you are supposed to take out the garbage, but the dumpster is full), notify the people in charge of the venue immediately so you can find an alternative solution.
This isn’t about micromanaging. It is not about getting approval for every single detail. It is about sharing information with the people who are working with you to make your event extraordinary.
Stress Prevention Means Building Trusted Relationships
So, doing the previous two items leads to this one. If you are reliable and communicative, you will build trusted relationships. I know that is obvious. But the relationship-building is vital because these are the people you will be relying on when something goes wrong. If a caterer flakes on you at the last minute, you will be able to call up one of your trusted relationships and put together a Plan B.
Knowing that you have options is how you prevent stress.
When something does not go according to plan, it is stressful, but that stress is not because you are disappointed, it is because your mind is racing as to how to fix it. If you have people that you can rely on when something goes wrong, you will be less stressed. However, that does not mean that you haven’t thought of potential pitfalls beforehand.
Prepare for the Worst, Hope for the Best
Besides having trusted relationships to rely on when things go wrong, also make sure that you have your basics covered. You should be able to foresee some potential problems and make sure that they do not occur.
Read 5 Common Problems That Can Ruin Your Event, and 38 Things Every Planner Needs In Their Event Survival Kit for more details.
When something goes wrong at your event, there is not much to do but breathe, smile, and execute your backup plan. Hopefully, all your preparation beforehand will prevent this, but if not, you have the tools to solve it.