One of the best compliments I have ever received was from a new friend who said, “Anthony, you know when to put your oxygen mask on first.” The friend assured me that it was the best possible thing for a person to do, and a hard lesson to learn.

There is something so selfish-sounding about “put your oxygen mask on first.” Frequent travelers by airplane hear it all of the time, and we probably take it for granted. It took ages for me to understand the value of putting on the mask to save myself before attempting to help save someone else. For me, time with my family and family of friends, and travel are ways I put my mask on.

Event planning is not an easy profession. It requires giftedness but it also requires energy, speed, strategic thinking, and endurance. Parenting requires the same. Maintaining a healthy relationship requires the same. Life requires the same.

It is only logical that having the ability to know when to stop, breathe, and do whatever is necessary to keep breathing, is necessary to be of any value to the others we serve.

Though it seemed like an odd compliment, I get it and will be more mindful of knowing when it’s time to put my mask on. My hope is that you also learn when to breathe and restore yourself in order to be emotionally and mentally well for the journey.