Tag Archives: stress

Seasonal Bliss: Autumn in the City


“There is something incredibly nostalgic and significant about the annual cascade of autumn leaves.” – Joe L. Wheeler

Autumn in the city is absolutely stunning. I think I’ve said this on numerous occasions, and yet it will never be enough. Coming from a small town in Ontario, where the snow is plenty, it is nearly impossible to experience what the fall season has to offer. Generally speaking, by mid-November snow has taken over what little remains of the fall foliage. Since moving to NY I’ve actually gotten the opportunity to experience the season in its entirety. Between the pumpkin spiced lattes, array of colors, and beginning of knit scarves, it’s safe to say fall is my favorite season.

One of the reasons I love autumn is because it marks the onset of the holidays. As the temperature dips, and little fluorescent lights begin to go up around the city, the excitement builds for decked out halls and holiday tunes. Oh, and if you haven’t already heard, the tree is up in
Rockefeller Center! The anticipation for the first snowfall is on everyone’s mind, and everyday the hope for a snowflake is what builds holiday cheer!

As I walk the city streets, I can’t resist the urge to window shop. This is usually followed by a brief stop-in, which normally turns into an hour of browsing, and then of course the occasional purchase. Sometimes I’ll catch myself thanking my long-list of family members for giving me an excuse to shop well in advance. In true PR-girl fashion, gift giving takes time and planning. Here are some pre-holiday tips to keep the stress to a minimum, and the days full of joy!

  • List it. PR people love organization. Our life requires calendars, lists, and notes to stay up-to-date and in-the-know at all possible times. There are no rules against making lists for gift giving!
  • Set aside card time. Crossing your t’s and dotting your i’s means you’re reaching out and thanking people who have helped you through the year. Before the New Year rolls around, set a time to send out cards to those who deserve your appreciation!
  • Need a break? Take it. We all know the end-of-the-year time can get busy and frantic. Before you hit overload, set aside some “me-time” to keep yourself cool, calm and collected.
  • Stay in the loop. It’s easy to get caught up in the buzz of the holidays, especially in NYC, so remember to stay on track. If you find yourself daydreaming, refocus your energy on the tasks at hand. You’ll thank yourself for not getting behind later – and your family will too!

Have other tips? Tweet me @Sam__Dickson

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Staring at a Blank Page – Being Hit with Writer’s Block


“There is no rule on how to write. Sometimes it comes easily and perfectly; sometimes it’s like drilling rock and then blasting it out with charges.” – Ernest Hemingway 

As many PR pros know, writing is a large component of our day-to-day work schedule. Between press releases, newspaper articles, and tweeting, communication is of great importance to our careers. With writing being so critical to the industry, many PR professionals use blogging platforms and online media to practice their prose.

One problem that many of us face is writer’s block. Whether you are pressed for time, or are hitting a wall for new ideas, the stress that comes with writer’s block can be overwhelming. So, how do we beat it?

Here are a few simple steps to help put your pen to paper:

  • Try to avoid last-minute writing – A lot of the times writer’s block can come from stress caused by time pressure. If you don’t gain inspiration quickly, and you can’t write under time constraints, try to write blog posts or articles beforehand.
  • Create a Pinboard – Whether you take the time to browse new pins on Pinterest, or you hang a cork board above your workspace, find inspiration from things around you that you love.
  • Write about something you love – When you are passionate about a topic, it will show in your writing. Most of the time you will find it easier to write about something that interests you.
  • Brainstorm with friends – Sometimes bouncing ideas off of friends can foster up a new set of articles. The best part about this option is how unique different perspectives are, and how you can incorporate this into your posts.
  • Take a break – For anything stressful, especially writer’s block, I always suggest taking a break. A walk through the park, hot yoga with a friend, or a quick latte in the café across the street can turn blank pages into novels.

In the end, have patience! The important thing to remember is that you must do something that makes you happy. As a fellow writer, my best writing comes when I am having fun.

- S.


If you can’t take the heat…

Everyone knows that every job comes with a side order of stress – make that a giant bowl. Whether you are pressed to meet deadlines, on the brink of a new promotion, or made a mistake that (you think) everyone noticed, it’s inevitable that you’re bound to run into a mild breakdown at some point.

Amidst all the chaos, it is crucial to stay calm and focused in order to move forward with grace. In case you are looking for a little refresher, especially during this summer heat, here are a few tips to keep in mind when you’re plate is piled a little too high!

  1. Take a break – When crunch time approaches in the office, things can get tense. Take a minute to walk outside, or even away from your desk to get some air. The last thing you want to do is take things personally and get upset.
  2. Food for thought – Remember to munch! As event day approaches, we all know that meals can be the last thing on our minds. Keep a handful of almonds or an apple on hand for those times when you need a small pick-me-up.
  3. Meet up with family, friends, or colleagues – In times of stress, the best listeners are the people close to you. Sometimes a break with people who know you best can take your mind off the to-do list in the back of your head.
  4. Set aside a “you” day – Nothing says R&R like a day dedicated to you. Whether you spend all-day Sunday watching movies, or need an extra long stroll in the park, sometimes the perfect stress reliever is time to collect your own thoughts on your own time.
  5. Ask Questions – If something is bothering you in the office, don’t be afraid to ask questions! A lot of the time unneeded stress can be caused by a simple question you are afraid to ask – and most of the time you will be surprised on how much clarity will help!
  6. Zzz … – Sleep. Sleep. Sleep. I can’t say this enough! Try your best to get a full night’s sleep at all costs. You will feel rejuvenated and ready to work when you aren’t exhausted from staying up all night.

Do you have a tip that helps you keep the stress away?

Tweet me and let me know @Sam__Dickson 

- S.