Over the past 20 years, Raell Padamsee’s company Ace Productions has made its mark in the field of theatre production, design and execution of mega events. Naturally, she is in the thick of hectic activity all the time but Raell never loses her bright smile and warm sparkle. Here’s how she does it…
I definitely believe in work-life balance. In simple terms, your brain needs to calm down and you need to enjoy the fruits of your labour. Since I work through the weekend as most of my shows are on the weekends, I make it a point to take Monday off. If we have had a very hectic week of being in the theatre, then Monday and Tuesday are compulsory offs for me and my entire team. It is very important to recharge your batteries.
Love your work
It’s very important to love what you do and if you do, there is no stress because you are in a state of joy. I learnt very early on from Sadhguru that if you need to ‘manage your stress’ you are certainly doing something wrong and you have no control over your life and work. It’s vital to enjoy your work and put in the requisite planning as our work needs extremely detailed structure since we are constantly dealing with large numbers of people, actors, children, and guests. This meticulous pre-planning ensures that you enjoy the process and subsequently, the outcome.
I tune into CNN, then my serials on Netflix, after that some stand-up comedy on YouTube and Stephen Colbert is a must. He’s my daily dose of de-stress. Apart from that of course, coming home to my crazy dog, Cookie Munchkins who insists I play with him for at least half an hour. So, we play fetch and most often it’s me who is fetching!
I spend time sharpening my skills with my chosen few games on my phone. They are great for focus, concentration and critical thinking. My dietician though has insisted on no electronics one hour prior to bedtime for good, uninterrupted sleep.
Prioritising is essential because everything can’t be urgent and important. Make sure you make your list for the day in the morning and stick to it no matter how much the temptation to stray and defocus. Another big one for me is limit your talk time. I feel it depletes your energy and it’s too much wastage of precious time. Also, stay away from repetition. I am allergic to people who repeat themselves; my brain switches off.
Exercising daily is key. It keeps your endorphins going and builds your immunity. Avoid junk food and stay away from caffeine or sugars post 6 pm. Eventually, you will start feeling relaxed. Most importantly, I live by a maxim one of my very dear friends banged into my head — ‘Be a friend to yourself’. We are so consumed by either trying to prove things or trying to save others and the world at large, that we often miss the point of it all. I believe in the ‘oxygen mask theory’. Keep focused and make sure you do the best for yourself and be the best version of yourself you can be — only then can you be productive and of any use to others.
Make sure you live each day to the fullest with the least amount of excesses, whether it’s food, drink, work and of course, the most important of all, chocolates! If you are into yoga or meditation, that’s the best gift you can give yourself. Stay away from all negative energy because it depletes your creative energy, leaving you exhausted and inefficient. Choose your battles and don’t sweat the small stuff.