The importance of self care for communication professionals

March 2020

In a world prior to the disruption and devastation of the coronavirus (COVID-19), this week Pinch Yourself Communication’s Mairi Barton was due to present on mental health communication at IABC Asia Pacific’s Fusion 20 conference in Wellington, New Zealand.

This heart graphic is one Mairi planned to share as part of a conversation about the known mental health impacts for business communication professionals from being at the frontline of crisis and issues management. The research findings related to the mental health of communication and other creative professionals from the United Kingdom (2019) and Australia (2018) are significant cause for concern.

‘You can’t help others if you don’t look after yourself.’

This message of self care feels more relevant than ever as communication practitioners – and other professions and trades, none more so than health and emergency services staff – work tirelessly across the globe in response to this unprecedented and rapidly-evolving pandemic and its health, and economic impacts.

Strategic communication plays a key role in helping organisations to plan and manage through a crisis, and there’s no doubt communication folks are working their hearts out right now.

Please look after yourself both physically and mentally, which we know are intrinsically linked. beyondblue, an Australian independent non-profit organisation working to address issues associated with mental health, has some simple tips on staying well.

At times like these communication practitioners – and other members of staff – rightly get swept up supporting our organisations and ensuring management, staff and stakeholders have what they need.

But you can’t maintain that, if you don’t look after yourself. Stay safe and well.

A promotional tile for the Fusion conference, which has been postponed to February 2021

Published by


Mairi Barton is a strategic communication and public affairs leader who has influenced and delivered outcomes at the highest levels of the Australian corporate, government and non-profit sectors. Mairi is the founder and Chief Executive of strategic communication agency Pinch Yourself Communication. She is an award-winning former journalist who served in the Federal Parliamentary Press Gallery in Canberra. Mairi enjoys photography and posts to her Instagram gallery: @pinchmyself