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Why PR is like yoga – Four ways to put some om into your commsby Likhita Somani

According to a survey by CareerCast, Public Relations was rated amongst the top 10 taxing professions, with a stress score of 49.44 out a maximum of 97 points. What’s more, not only is our job stressful, but as PR professionals, we need to keep ourselves focused and maintain a positive persona at all times.

From my personal experience, I have found yoga and meditation to be the perfect tools for reducing stress. I was also surprised to find that the principles underpinning yoga and meditation could be applied directly to PR itself. Here are my four tips to putting some om into your comms:

1)    Getting the foundation right

It’s crucial that we keep our body and mind relaxed prior to performing asanas (postures). In yoga, this is accomplished by chanting “om”, accompanied with deep breathing. Intoning “om” produces vibrations, and opens the sinuses to clear the airways.

Likewise, before diving into media outreach, it is imperative we lay the groundwork by understanding our client’s business goals, identifying the message that is to be conveyed, and our target audience. Once these are agreed upon, we draw up the strategy, and define the steps vital to achieving our target.

2)    Consistency is key

To get the yoga postures and breathing right, it is important to put in daily practice, and improve our bodily conditioning, one brick at a time.
Similarly, brand building is not an overnight exercise. Continual visibility, with the right messaging are vital for both maintaining and building brand reputation.

3)    Uni-tasking

An important principle of yoga is to direct your energy towards the task at hand. Utilising your energy in a disciplined manner aids you to stay more focused and enthusiastic.

In an agency, we service a portfolio of clients, and it could get problematic to concentrate when we are being pulled in multiple direction. Multitasking is often lauded, and remains one of the most sought-after traits. But recent scientific studies indicate that multitasking may reduce efficiency and performance, as the human mind can only focus on one thing at a time.

Focusing on one task at a time, being mindful of the deliverables and timelines, and staying in the present delivers more efficient results, compared to dividing our attention to multiple pending tasks. Therefore, whether we are drafting content or meeting with clients, it is important to concentrate at the task at hand, and see it through to our best abilities, before shifting to another task.

4)    Self-compassion

Yoga teaches us to love ourselves, with all our imperfections, and slowly nudges us to be better than we were yesterday. Our profession could be quite demanding at times when we are expected to juggle between meetings, events etc.  and there are days when inspiration can be hard to find.  

Instead of being hard on ourselves, we need to remember that tomorrow is a new day, and a new opportunity to begin again.  

At the end of the day, all our work and accomplishments would mean little, if we don’t love the person that we are. We owe it to ourselves to not only better our body and our work, but also our mind, to be able to successfully project positivity and confidence in all we do.

So, when you are feeling overwhelmed, take a deep breath, exhale, and repeat till you feel at peace from within!

Om Shanti!

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