When you are a professional photographer, your health can suffer if some precautions aren’t made. Trying to capture the action at a wedding, concert, or corporate event takes vigilance, plenty of moving around, and skill. Being a photographer can be a stressful job, one that doesn’t end when the event does. Photographers spend countless hours sitting at a computer, editing images, calling clients and updating their website. When you want to be your best self, it’s important to take care of your basic needs so that you don’t burn out from the career you love.

Indulge Your Mind, Reduce Your Stress

Whether you take a vacation, go for a hike in the woods, or spend some time just reading a book, it’s important to indulge your mind when you have a stressful job. Take the time you need to reduce your stress by doing the things that you love. I often watch Hulu or play video games even if for a few hours to just stop ‘thinking.’ It’s easy for photographers to get overwhelmed, and to spend countless hours trying to make a few images perfect. It is necessary to take a break from your job, even when you love it. Find activities that you enjoy, and that help you feel calm so that you bring your best self to the next event you photograph. If the weather is nice, I encourage a local hike.

Take Care of Your Body

Working on your feet all day can be painful, as can carrying around heavy camera equipment. Many photographers complain of neck and upper back pain, and it is helpful to schedule regular massages to help combat the stress you place on your body as a photographer. Massage will help reduce stress, improves mobility and rejuvenates the body so that you are able to keep working. I recently went to a dedicated foot massage parlor and spent $42 for one hour. I went in feeling terrible and left feeling like a million bucks. I swear by getting foot massages, they are the best.

A Healthy Diet Promotes a Sense of Well Being

When you are working a long event, it can be easy to skip meals and push through your day. While this can work in the short term, you need to be eating a healthy diet in order to make it through the long days many photographers put in. When you have an event scheduled, you should pack healthy snacks in your gear to keep you going all day long. While you may be promised a meal at the event you are photographing, when this meal comes and how much time you have to eat it can prevent you from being able to eat. Eat a healthy diet to keep your mind sharp and your body strong while you are working through the day. I can’t stress it enough, but water is your best friend.

Working as a photographer is harder than it seems. It requires you to remain calm, to take care of your body and place your mind in all sorts of situations. You should have adequate stamina to make it through any event, and this often requires that you get plenty of sleep, exercise, and that you eat a healthy diet. Feel free to chime in if you have any pro tips in the comments section.

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