Agents were urged to prioritise their mental health over their business in a panel discussion led by the hosts of a popular podcast.
Jake Humphrey and Damian Hughes, who head up The High Performance Podcast, were joined on stage by Travel Counsellors customer operation director Claire Hill and travel counsellors Katharine Cleall, Elliott Rouse and Paula Ross.
Rouse told the panel he had recently “felt really down and low” despite hitting his annual sales target the week before, and said this was a “massive wake-up call”.
“It made me realise we have to take time to look after ourselves and put ourselves first, because if we don’t look after ourselves then we can’t look after our customers,” he said.
Hill agreed, saying: “Your long-term mental health is much more important than your business; you can’t run your business without it.
“Our strength is that we care so much – we’re so invested in our customers and teams – and that can be quite draining. The challenge is getting the balance right.”
Ross encouraged agents to “reach out to others in the community” if they feel they need support.
Hughes agreed, saying it is important for agents to maintain perspective.
“You have to maintain that perspective; you are so much more than a Travel Counsellors employee,” he said. “Something will come our way this year that we won’t want to happen, there will be something for everyone.
“What matters is how you react to that thing. You’re all bright, talented, complex, multi-layered people. You’re so much more than what you do.”
The importance of looking after your mental health was shared by a number of guest speakers, including Fearne Cotton – who has spoken publicly about her struggles with anxiety.
The broadcaster offered all delegates a three-month free trial of her wellness app Happy Place.