4 ways to get over festival comedowns, fast.
What goes up must come down. Makes sense, as staying high indefinitely, whilst fun sounding, is not exactly realistic.
How can you best deal with these dreaded comedowns? Wouldn’t it be nice to have some guidelines to make the process easier?
Comedowns from the highs you get at summer festivals, whether induced by a whole season of drinking, taking drugs or just having loads of fun (or a combination of the three), are TOUGH. Most music professionals have to deal with those all throughout the year, but it’s especially hard to leave behind a season of summer fun, filled with great music, connecting with people and excesses of the wrong kind, and get back to the daily routine of the 9 to 5 under a grey sky.
By following these simple guidelines, you can make it easier on yourself instead of going down a dark hole of gloom and doom.
1- Reflect on the good memories
Maybe it was the hours you spent dancing and laughing with your friends, or seeing your favourite artists play, or talking very important shit at 5am with a bunch of strangers. Maybe it was this new band you discovered and want to sign, or bonding with your mates from the office, or even a sexy festival fling. Maybe it was the sense of freedom you get from roaming in fields off your head instead of being stuck behind a desk.
These were all beautiful moments and you’re lucky to have lived them. We usually take our lives for granted, but if you think about it, how many people in the world are able to do something like this? The answer is very, very few.
There’s a Spanish saying that goes ‘no me pueden quitar el bailado’ - literally translated into: they can’t take what was danced away from me. Nothing can invalidate what you have already enjoyed.
Take a moment to reflect and be thankful for all those special moments you’ve experienced. They will always be with you and you can relive them through your memories whenever you wish, how cool is that!
2- Dedicate some time for self-care
When you feel like shit, mentally and physically, it’s imperative that you look after yourself. Looking after yourself does NOT mean sitting on the couch watching crap TV and eating pizza- indulging in this form of rest can be ok for a day or so, but it’s actually counterproductive to your main objective, which is: TO FEEL BETTER
How do you look after yourself ? 3 basic things to address are:
Sleep: you’ve deprived your body of quality sleep and now it’s time to recuperate the lost hours. Make sleep a priority by going to bed earlier than usual. It’s not easy because your body clock is probably fucked up, but there are many simple tricks you can use to fall asleep more easily. I’ll write about this in more detail in another post, but since we’re on the subject of music festivals, one thing you can do is listen to slow, relaxing, peaceful music. It doesn't have to be new-agey type stuff (I can hear you snigger at the back), it can also be beautiful tracks like this one or anything else you like. You’re a music expert after all.
Nutrition: what you eat has a direct impact on how you feel. Now is the time to evacuate those nasty toxins out of your body and stock up on foods rich in vitamins and minerals i.e.: lots of fresh fruits and vegs, lemon water, garlic, turmeric and so on. If your serotonin has left the building, a good way to boost it naturally is to eat tryptophan-rich foods such as eggs, cheese, tofu, salmon, turkey and nuts, which, mixed with carbs, should give you a nice boost of serotonin.
Exercise: I can see you hiding in the corner my dear, but I’m afraid you can’t escape this one. If you don’t already exercise regularly, start incorporating some movement, ANY movement in your daily life. It can be things like always taking the stairs instead of the lift, dancing in your living room, cycling to work. When you’re in a funk, the last thing you want to do is move, and it’s precisely moving that will help you get out of that funk.
Going forward, having a self-care routine is a great way to feel better in body & mind - download this checklist now so you can create your own routine.
3- Feel your emotions
You know the drill, you feel depressed because the fun is over, you’re back into a boring routine, and your serotonin levels are loooow. Even watching a TV ad makes you wanna cry. OK, then cry, cry your heart out my love. Your emotions are just energy moving, they’re not bad per se, and the sooner you release them the better. The worst thing you can do is to suppress them, trust me on that one (more on that in another post).
Feeling your emotions doesn’t mean lashing out on the people close to you, it just means feeling what you feel, observing it without judgment, and letting whatever emotion that appears move through you. Just let it happen, that’s all you need to do.
If you’re an artist, you could even use those emotions to fuel your creativity. A friend of mine who was on an intense comedown after his first time in Berghain told me he came out of the hole after spending two nights making techno. Trying to capture the energy/spirit/memories of a festival or party in a track or mix can be hugely cathartic.
4- List some things to look forward to
When you’re down, an easy pick-me up is to think of other things you can looking forward to. Maybe you have a holiday coming up, or a cool event is happening soon, or you can FINALLY have some time for yourself instead of being away most week-ends. Make a list of everything you look forward to in the next 3 months, no matter how big or small. Look at your list regularly and anticipate the joy that’s coming.
Comedowns may be part of life in the music industry, but you can make it a LOT easier on yourself instead of suffering passively. When you implement those simple steps you’ll start to feel mentally and physically better, much faster.
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