In my previous post, I mentioned that being prepared is setting yourself up for success. There is a saying I like to use in situations where some partying is going to happen: Be smart about being stupid! It means what is says. Do not ruin your own good time because you were not prepared for the adventure that is ahead of you.
It does not matter if you have never even gone camping before or are a 20 year veteran Burner. There is always planning involved for any event. That is why I created this blog! I am going to break down my personal planning strategies and some *Pro Tips* I have collected along the way.
First things first. ORGANIZATION! Being organized from the start makes the process a lot easier. There have been times where I went to pack only a few days before a big week long camp-in and I always regretted it. I ended up over packing, not getting a lot of sleep before I left and actually forgetting things I needed. All because I half-assed it. The great thing about festivals almost universally, is that the community comes together to help out each other. Because for that brief moment in time, you are all one big happy family trying to have fun and not die.
SO, how does one organize you ask? There are many options, from a variety of digital platforms, to good old fashion paper and pen. I prefer a mix of both options. Digitally: Pinterest, Google Docs, Instagram, Amazon, Ebay and Etsy. I know that sounds like a lot, but, I will explain how these platforms are useful tools in preparing for an epic journey. Then, I have a simple yellow legal pad where I make a hard copy of all my plans. I like to check things off and have a master list of ideas in my hot little hand.
There are phases of planning. I like to go through a DISCOVERY phase where I start brainstorming for an event. For example, I want to do an outrageous costume (like always). I start searching for images to light a spark of creativity. Hashtags on Instagram lead me to awesome pictures. From there, I will go to Pinterest and look up Do It Yourself tutorials. Lastly, once I have an idea of how I want to crate my costume look, I source cool accessories and props from Etsy, Amazon and Ebay. And then, the cycle will repeat. From searching on the aforementioned eCommerce sites, you will then get inspired for other costumes ideas. Then “Pinning” those finds so they are saved for later projects. Once you finish your epic outfit, you take pictures of it, that you then post to Instagram! Thus meaning the DISCOVERY process is forever ongoing and requires awesome organization to keep all your ideas easily accessible for the future.
Pinterest is my favorite way to organize my ideas digitally. Not only can I upload content of my own, I can add friends to boards and collaborate much faster then group text or chain emails. Need to share a time schedule, or a cost spread sheet? That is where Goggle Docs comes in. Allows people to edit and fill out sections without creating a new copy every. single. time.
The first time I actually even got on the website Pinterest was in 2014, to help plan a Burning Man trip. I was feeling anxious about not being ready and wanted to visually get an idea for things to pack instead of just staring at a list of words on a page. I started with a few boards, mainly saving my google search images and Instagram screenshots to corresponding boards. Then, I started discovering pins that other users had added, which led me to discovering great things like Camping Hacks, or Ultimate Festival Packing Lists. Its basically a rabbit hole.
Pinterest was especially helpful to me when it came to inspiring me for future events. While I was reading my 100th *Ultimate Packing List* it dawned on me that none of these list were all inclusive. No festival is the same. This led me to start compiling a few Pinterest boards that focused generally on things like *Camping* and *Costumes* so I could refer back to them later. I then start a board for the specific festival I am currently planning for now. As time gets closer to the event, I bust out the pen and paper.
Pen and paper forces you to sort through all the information you have gathered and decide what is necessary and what is realistic. I tend to overpack on outfits, so writing it down forces me to see how many different things I really need before I pull everything out of the closet. Work smarter, not harder people! The handwritten list also proves very handy when trying to figure out what perishable items or last minute supplies are still needed. Lastly, a hard list lets you cross things off without deleting them, so again, you get a visual sense of what you are bringing with you over freaking out you forgot to add something to the list, and now don’t know if you deleted it or never had it on the list to begin with.
Now you have some basic guidelines based off of how I prepare myself and my group for festival events, you can easily tailor a plan to suit your needs. As always, this is me sharing my journey hoping to help anyone who is looking for it along the way.
****To check out my personal Pinterest Boards Click Here!