For as long as I can remember, group events have given me an anxious feeling in my gut. This anxious feeling is hard to dissect because the truth is, I love being around people and hate being cooped up inside! As a young child, the thought of going to a birthday party or sleepover alone was nerve-inducing. Nine out of 10 times, I never made it through the sleepover part of a slumber party. I thought I’d eventually grow out of it. But, as I matured the anxious feeling followed me from event to event,
Even in college, whether I was attending a sorority dance or off to a monthly business club meeting – I’d often find my nerves getting the best of me. Resulting in me not attending events altogether, which had me feeling like a slacker. I mean for a long time, I’d play off my lack of group attendance as being an act of introversion. Or I’d blame my absence on a jam-packed schedule. But, the truth is social anxiety was stopping me from going to events!
Since I had been avoiding events for the better half of my 24 years, it was easy for me to give in and not go. Until last year, when I moved back to Connecticut.
Being home, meant I no longer had a reason to pass up events especially since attending local opportunity and partnership events were key to growing my career and community. Over the last year, I’ve come a long way! I decided I wouldn’t let my nerves get the best of me any longer so, I practiced trial and error to push myself out of my comfort zone.
Now, I really wanted to share my personal experience with event anxiety and how to manage nerves when attending work events; for those of you who can relate – I hope this post helps!
As a blogger, I’m grateful for the option to be selective with which work events I attend. In fact, my nerves are a big reason, you don’t see me on Instagram stories attending a ton of events. From big city blogger events to fashion week activations, I often politely decline and spend my time instead, capturing more travel-based New England content. But, for the brand events, I love and can’t get enough off – here is how I prepare my nervous system:
Keep a Mantra
If you find yourself nervous about something it likely means you care an awful lot about it. For me, my nerves flair solely for work events and parties – especially when I don’t know the guest list. When an invitation arrives and anxiety follows, I focus on why I’m RSVPing “yes.”
If it’s a party, I put my attention on the person or reason for the celebration and replay that thought to myself leading up to the event. For work events, I’m extra selective only choosing events that are with dream brands and partners – which means my nerves are a little harder to wish away. When work event anxiety arises, I again embrace the mantra of why I’m attending and repeat it to myself over and over – sometimes even during the event! A mantra helps me to manage nerves when attending work eventsvand enjoy the amazing opportunity at that moment.
Focus On Those ‘Pinch Me’ Moments
I’m so grateful for each opportunity and especially the ones I say yes to!
I mean, I had a total ‘pinch me’ moment last year when I went to the Good Housekeeping x Miele event. I was equal parts excited and nervous! When those feelings struck I thought how the brand was on my ultimate goal list! The excitement started to weigh out my nerves. Still, it only makes sense to be nervous about something you’ve always dreamed of.
This past week, I had the opportunity to attend an event with Dunkin. Initially, I was nervous, until I began to reconnect with my younger self. I couldn’t help but think of 2016 Aubrey – who was editing photos of flat lays in her dorm room dreaming of a day she’d work with Dunkin!
Those moments have made all that nervous energy well worth it.
Bring a Friend, Coworker, or Photographer
For me, a lot of my anxiety towards work events has to do with a fear of not capturing enough quality content.
For the longest time, I was embarrassed to ask if I could bring a plus one to a work event – that is until I walked into events where I was the only one without a plus one!
When I get an event invitation, there’s usually no mention of a plus one. Instead, there’s an option for content creation. Having an extra hand to hold a camera or shoot a boomerang makes creating content both easier and more fun! Not to mention, the client usually receives better content out of the deal. So don’t be afraid to share your thoughts with clients or management.
Having a confidant by my side instantly relieves event nerves. But, I have had a few events where a plus one wasn’t an option. In those cases, I was lucky enough to align my schedule with other bloggers, I knew and trusted.
I hope this post gave you a little insight into how to manage nerves when attending work events and the tricks I use to overcome it. If you can relate to work event nerves, what do you do to combat them? Let me know in the comments below!
Shop This Post: