Mixcloud Magic: Lizzy Edwards
One of our aims at eclectic Toolbox is to create a visible network of music industry members that are at the forefront of mental health awareness and helping to shape an informed and healthier music industry.
Through this visible network we hope to create change. As part of our commitment to change we are spending time with individuals and organisations across the industry who are also advocating mental health initiatives: This agenda isn't just about what we are doing, its about celebrating and amplifying what everyone is doing.
We are so excited to have Lizzy Edwards as part of this growing network and with us on our journey to develop a healthier industry for everyone.
Lizzy is a trailblazer dedicated to cultivating wellbeing in her workplace Mixcloud, we were delighted when she joined us for Mental Health First Aid Training for the Music Industry and wanted to find out more about her invaluable work.
Tell us a bit about you...
I’m Lizzy….a Hackney based Executive Assistant and In-House Meditation/Yoga Teacher at Mixcloud. I am passionate about all things mental and physical health related. I have been teaching yoga for over 4 years and teach workshops around mental health. I also have a weak spot for dark chocolate and love exploring hot countries.
What inspired you to want to work in the music industry?
My passion for music and working with creative, inspiring people. I feel the best of ME gets pulled out around creatives. As early as I can remember I’ve had this huge love for music. I would spend hours listening to music, swapping hip hop tape packs (NWA,Public Enemy, Wu-Tang Clan, Nas) at school.
Then at age 16 the hip hop tape packs become jungle/drum and bass (Hysteria, Ruffneck Ting, One Nation etc). It was being snuck into jungle parties back in Bristol clubs that took my music education to the next level. That’s when I fell in love with that scene, the culture and that genre of music. Still to this day, it’s so rich with culture and watching it evolve has been amazing.
A special nod to a certain MC Jakes for sneaking me into the raves, beyond grateful to that man.
What does Mixcloud do to support wellbeing?
Lots! The founders really champion wellness and fully support it in the workplace.
We have weekly meditation classes, Tuesday yoga/run club and a yearly wellness week which I curate. There is a Slack channel dedicated to all the healthy chat you can imagine.
It’s a regular occurrence for people at Mixcloud to take part in charity runs, or host movement/dance classes that the team come along and support.
It’s so refreshing to work for a company that listens to my suggestions and also takes action.
There are so many proven studies that show that regular meditation increases your productivity, creativity and concentration, so it makes sense to have it in-house right?
Why did you attend Mental Health First Aid Training for the Music Industry?
To develop a greater understanding of how to help people with mental health disorders and to notice the early signs. I also wanted to feel more confident in being that support to people and holding space for my colleagues. It's something I take seriously, as saying the wrong thing to someone can have a triggering effect so approaching with confidence and care is crucial.
What did you learn from the course?
I took away a few things from the course, but mainly that there are dedicated helplines and support groups for people in the music industry… Finally! Amazing.
I also learned more of the early signs to notice if someone is struggling - there are a lot more than I thought. On top of that, what I can do to help in the very early stages.
Why is this important to the music industry?
The music industry is a high pressured environment that requires you to be switched on at all times. Working across different time zones with so many people and, of course, having mobile phones on us at all times means that we are always working to some degree.
The increasing pressure on artists now especially with social media is massive, so knowing that there is this extra support is a huge stepping stone. Having an open dialogue around mental health is important also to knock down any stigma.
Where would you like to see the industry in 12 months time?
More training like this for people in support roles so they can help people that are struggling and also, of course, take care of themselves. After all, you can’t take care of others if you aren’t looking after yourself. I would like to see more talks, workshops and retreats for people in this industry around self care and managing their stress/anxiety/life worries.
Finally having more non alcoholic options at events, gigs, bars and clubs would be great.
What works for you? What are your best practice pieces for wellbeing?
I have lots of little tricks in my ‘tool kit’. Here are some take-aways that you can do wherever you are in the world:
1. I have my phone on flight mode when I’m in my bedroom and my laptop stays out in the living room so my mind and body know that my bedroom is a place of rest and recharge.
2. I set clear boundaries, so when I want to be offline I put my out of office on and always leave a message stating that on Whatsapp. (We recommend trying out What's App for business)
3. Having a regular meditation practice - regular being the key word here.. :)
4. I delete social media apps off my phone for a week or sometimes two week period when I feel any anxiety bubbling.
With wellbeing in mind what is the best piece of advice you have for those looking to start a career in the industry?
Find your passion:
Find someone/something for example: agent, artist, or company that resonates with you and see how they got to be successful. Reach out (if they’re a company) and see if they have any graduate/work experience programmes. But, also come from a place of passion! This is helpful when the stressful long days/evenings come… because they will one day! Ha.
Do your homework:
The industry is quick and sometimes hard and you’ve got to be on top of your game, so keep the thirst for learning and growing. Keep true to your authentic self.
And finally most importantly….
Make sure you carve out time in your day for YOU to recharge. For example, this is a typical day for me:
I wake up and it’s meditation - 5-30mins depending on how long I feel I need.
I then take a cold shower to wake my body and do a gratitude list all before I check my phone or laptop. This is key to my mindstate in the morning.
I then head to the gym for 30mins cardio and then 30mins weights or a yoga class.
It's very important to move the energy around the body, so find something that you connect with and enjoy.
I find mornings work for me, but whatever time of the day works for you just ensure you make that time.
Even 30 minutes, which we all have... out of 24hrs - you can do it!
The way I set myself up for the day has an impact on how my day goes, how I interact with people and how my work day plays out.
I use these apps daily:
Want to know more?
If you have any questions, want to chat or find out about Lizzy's next workshop you can contact her here: