Calming the Inner Storm of Production
The time between Thanksgiving and the New Year seems to pass by more quickly every year. Last-minute projects pop up, with 4th quarter budgets that need to be spent before the year closes out. It can be exciting to have the opportunity of a few projects before those slower winter months, however, the reality of those projects can often entail a condensed pre-production timeline with a challenging budget. Pair this with the frantic energy of the holidays, and the situation can easily get overwhelming.
Mindfulness and meditation might be all the rage these days in certain circles, but there is definitely something to be said about finding moments of stillness, especially during this time.
As a producer, I’m often managing multiples projects & teams. This means an on-going to-do list while overseeing communications, expectations & various other responsibilities.
One of the habits I’ve been cultivating over the years is mindfulness meditation.
Practicing mindfulness brings me back to the current moment and prevents me from getting overwhelmed or stressed. It fades the to-do list away and allows me to focus on the one thing that is happening at that precise moment. Breathing. Sometimes, I simply go through a list of what I am grateful for. I try to build this practice into my morning or evening right before bedtime. In the morning, it allows me to set an intention for the day - the mood or a particular accomplishment or goal. In the evening, it clears my mind, turns off my running to-do list, and allows me to power down. Some individuals meditate for 20 minutes a day, but I find that even 5 or 10 minutes can help.
How do you handle the stress of the holidays or a particularly stressful project?
Are there any habits you’ve cultivated to help you through?
If you are interested, here are a few resources to help you get started:
Headspace - App for iPhone/Android - 10-minute guided meditations
Mindfulness in Plain English - Bhante Henepola Gunaratana
The Miracle of Mindfulness - Thich Nhat Hanh
Real Happiness - Sharon Salzberg
Words by Annika Howe
Photo by Adrian Alston