Convention season is in full swing, whether you’re recharging your batteries after SDCC or Gen Con, getting ready for Dragoncon or the next PAX, or going to another great, geeky con. Conventions can be tough, though — especially when you’re also dealing with mental health issues.
Never fear — Dr. B. is here with a few great suggestions for how you can enjoy your next con to the fullest while still taking care of yourself. For his latest Year of Mental Health article over at Geek & Sundry, he offers convention season tips that most of us could benefit from. Particularly those of us who want to see everything, all the time.
Conventions can be amazing experiences, but they have their pitfalls. Cons are fun, no doubt. We get to see all sorts of wonderful things we enjoy. We might get to meet people we admire or try out new games or products before they even come to market. For some of us, cons are also an opportunity to socialize in an environment where we feel fully accepted for liking what we like. In all those ways, conventions can feel like sanctuaries. Cons are also long, loud, crowded, and energy consuming, and many people feel overwhelmed by this.
One of Take This’ founders refers to something she calls “Everything is Awesome Syndrome”. We want to experience everything we can at a convention. We paid money to be there, after all. Some people actually feel a little guilty when they don’t get all they can out of the experience. That said, if we have to work too hard to see everything, it’s not fun. Plus, we can end up exhausted, overwhelmed, and emotional, which takes more time out of our con. In physical activities, it’s better to stop for a little bit before you injure yourself instead of tearing something and being placed on forced rest for a long time. If you’re still following my logic, taking a little effort and time for self-care is obviously worth it, since it can help us maximize our enjoyment by preventing burn-out later. Cons are a marathon, not a sprint, so we have to find ways to pace ourselves and be healthy along the way.
Want the tips? Head on over to Geek & Sundry — and be sure to share your own convention survival suggestions in the comments.