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BeatsPre-Festival Anxiety: It’s Universal

Pre-Festival Anxiety: It’s Universal

“Is everyone feeling what I’m feeling right now?”

I never thought such a simple sentence could be so life-altering. Spoken by my dear friend Matt, these words opened my eyes to the reality that everyone experiences pre-show anxiety; I’m not the only one.

Of course, there are tips online from influencers and other journalists about pre-show anxiety but it still never felt real. It never felt like my friends were as anxious as I was or that somehow the anxiety that these rave influencers were feeling wasn’t the same as what I was feeling.  My friends and I just never addressed it and therefore pretended it didn’t exist.

Cue my lord and savior, who finally asked what we had all been thinking: “Are we all anxious right now?!” And I’m here to say YES! It’s okay to have pre-show anxiety and I bet your friends are feeling it too.

Photo by EDC Las Vegas

Lean Into Your Friends

It’s time we got real about pre-fest anxiety. And, yep, you guessed it, the first step to facing uncomfortable feelings is addressing them.

Noticing when you’re feeling uneasy before a show can be a hard task but it’s better to control your emotions before they control you.

I think we all aspire to be cool, calm, and collected but what we aren’t doing is relying on our friends to guide and help us.

As a society, we’ve somehow reached the conclusion that sharing our feelings is a burden to those around us. We feel as though having emotions that aren’t perfectly positive will bring down the vibe.

Our friends want us to have a good time and they can help us get there; we just need to let them. This doesn’t have to be a big mental breakdown or some huge ask of them.

If you are feeling anxious, start by saying just that. Be the one to break the stigma around talking about our mental health.

Recognizing that everyone handles anxiety differently is important too. I’m someone who likes to micro-dose alone time before the festival. I let my friends know that I’m feeling anxious and I isolate myself.

When I let them in on what I’m feeling, I usually get positive reassurance about spending time alone and it makes me feel better about leaving the group and my friends know I’m not mad at them.

Prepare Early To Avoid Procrastination Anxiety

We do have a certain responsibility to reduce the triggers of our anxiety as well. Being prepared for an event is one way to hugely reduce your pre-fest anxiety.

Multi-day camping festivals especially require a longer prep time; sometimes months. By starting your planning early, there’s more room to adjust and feel confident going into the weekend.

It’s proven science that checklists and to-do lists can significantly reduce anxiety. Most large festivals have packing checklists that you can copy and personalize. Making a list months before the festival will give you plenty of time to add things to it sporadically.

You can’t think of everything you need in one night, after all.

It’s helpful to set goals and a realistic timeline for everything you want to accomplish over the weekend. When the set times come out for the festival, start making a loose schedule for yourself. This includes sets you want to see, any recharge time you need, and time to explore the venue itself.

By having a loose idea of how you want your days to go, you will decrease the feeling of wasting your days or missing things you really wanted to see.

Don’t make the mistake of overbooking yourself.  There are going to be things you’ll want to see and do that you didn’t even think of before the event.

Life is going to happen and there’s nothing you can do to stop it. Leave space in your schedule for ‘oopsie’ moments.

In some multiverse your car will get a flat or Kyle will forget all of his camping gear at his parent’s house. Having flexibility in your schedule and going with the flow will make these moments feel less debilitating.

Photo by Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival

Take Care Of Yourself

Preparing early for a festival will allow you to tackle obstacles little by little but nonetheless preparing for a festival can frequently be taxing.

Set aside time to specifically take care of yourself. Make sure you’re continuing to do things you love before the festival, especially if they’re part of your routine.

‘Normalcy’ is highly rooted in routine and the human psyche can become unbalanced with even the slightest shift in the day-to-day. This then opens the door for anxiety to make a home in the absence of balance.

Continue to work out regularly if that’s what you typically do. Spend time outside and take a break from festival planning every once in a while. Most importantly, feed your body balanced, nourished meals.

We all know that feeling of having no food in the fridge before a festival. We’ve either packed it all away for camping or hesitated to buy more before heading off for the weekend.

Clean, healthy energy is the glue between mental and physical symbiosis.

Tidy Your Space And Eliminate Future Anxiety

Without you even knowing it, your mind is in constant communication with your environment. And there’s nothing quite like packing for a festival that will destroy both your physical space and your mental space.

Clothes sprawled out on the bed after organizing your fits; the kitchen covered with food in the midst of packing the coolers; camping gear exploding from the garage. We all know the song and dance of preparing for a weekend-long festival.

Having a tidy space can only set you up for success and feels like a weight lifted off your chest. But the honest reality is that we often don’t prioritize cleaning before the festival.

Getting your things together early allows you to make sure you have everything while leaving time to clean up after yourself.

You might not notice it at the time, but I promise your mind will thank you for leaving a positive, inviting space to come home to.

Photo by Orhun Uygur

Remember Why You Do This!

Even if you anticipate every disaster and have all of your ducks in a row, anxiety can and will creep up on you. Learning and practicing healthy coping mechanisms will help you navigate these moments.

Managing anxiety looks different for everyone. Tools you can utilize include closing your eyes and deep breathing when everything all feels a little too heavy.

When your mind feels like it is spiraling out of control, try grounding yourself. Honing in on the 3-3-3 rule can help you feel more connected to reality. This rule asks you to name three things you can see, name three things you can hear, and move three body parts.

Most importantly, remember why you live this life. Remind yourself that you love raving!

A lot of the time you can’t pinpoint why you’re feeling anxious but something unknown about the show or festival is making you feel uneasy. Reminding yourself that 99% of the time everything ends up okay helps tame the on-edge feelings. I can guarantee that you’ve already conquered the hardest thing in your life to this point.

Remind yourself to relax and let yourself have fun! Don’t set your expectations too high and live in the moment with your friends. The universe has a special way of having your back.

Featured image by EDC Las Vegas.

The post Pre-Festival Anxiety: It’s Universal appeared first on EDM Maniac.


By: Katie Katuscak
Title: Pre-Festival Anxiety: It’s Universal
Sourced From:
Published Date: Tue, 09 Apr 2024 23:39:34 +0000

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