The Stress and De-stress

A couple of weeks back, I was invited to attend a Stress Down Day event, courtesy of my favourite people to work with, the Melbourne bunch from Porter Novelli.

They are SO MUCH FUN!

Anyhoo, I said yes. Because remember I’d just filmed those two segments for Room to Grow on the very topic of stress?

Also, I may or may not be stressed. Also, I like to share relevant stuff with my Diary readers, and obtain as much useful information as possible to provide pragmatic resources (real-sources) for Real Mums.

I organised it with the Grumpy Bastard, put it in the diary and put a big smile on my face.

A week later, Grumpy advises me he is working on the very same evening and “I told you!”¬† Except he hadn’t.

And it was my duty to organise Appropriate¬†Care For The Children, which went off in the form of an email to approximately nine contacts, begging, pleading and offering up my firstborn for someone to come and play with the kids. I added the extreme desire for me to be at this event. I didn’t need the stress.

Two days ago, I still had no assistance … stress levels were increasing rapidly and I SO BADLY wanted to be there. Then came the email stating the kids could come. Then, late Tuesday night, an offer of assistance came through. Hurrah!

Organised, I spent much of yesterday working on the new website for Real Mums, which is always a fun job when you are an impatient control freak with too many ideas, farewelled Grumpy Pants and signed off work for the day in order to prepare myself for an evening of information, pampering and socialising.

This Stress Down Preparation involved the three year old insisting I catch the spider crawling up his door and putting it outside. This, in itself, entailed him climbing onto the benchtop to obtain a glass glass, then screaming at me excitedly. The spider was captured.

At which point, it freaked, jumped out of the glass, nearly touched me – it nearly touched me! - and vanished entirely. I know spiders are scary, but when you know there is a spider and can’t see it … that right there is the very definition of Stressful Situation.

And, of course, throughout this entire ordeal, I had no pants on.


Semi naked, I finished the job – undressing, I’d given up on the spider – and soaked in an aromatherapeutic, bubblicious, boy filled bath, because I couldn’t possibly ever have one on my own. I mean, who knows what might happen to me should I bath on my own!

I emerge, dry, have an offer of a lift to the event (YES!), discover my pants not only need ironing, but require me to shorten them again.

One day, I may learn that Ironing Too Long Pants Legs To The Right Length is not an effective, nor remotely permanent solution. One day ….

My babysitter was running late, and pushing it close to Leaving For Guitar Lessons time. My lift was also running late, so it wasn’t so bad.

We arrive. We are handed some deliciously soft slippers to don, and a glass of wine. To drink.

We were treated to a delightful, short, talk by Chris Wagner of LifeLine about stress, what it does to your body and what you can do about it.

Eerily – and quite validatingly, what I said in my Stress segments for Room To Grow was pretty much the same thing. So that was nice. And I now cannot wait till my videos come out!

He mentioned a couple of tips to manage stress:

  1. Talk to someone you trust
  2. Exercise
  3. Talk to your GP – if your GP sucks, go find a nice one
  4. Eat well
  5. Do something you love (go, now, do it!)

I know you’ve heard all these before, and I do have plans to take you through this more and show you how you can fit it into your life.

Also, what “exercise” and “eat well” mean …

They really do sound terribly simple when written down like that, but I can fully appreciate how hard they can be to implement, effectively, in your life.

Chris also mentioned the official Stress Down Day, happening tomorrow – Friday the 27th of July. He suggested some things like “Get in your trackies and just chill.”

The issue I find, personally, with this is that to get my trackies on, I would have to get out of my jarmies. And I do love my jarmies!

Anyhoo, then I went and had a massage, a manicure, had lots more chat with the terribly funny Chris from Lifeline, and Matt from Bupa and all the other fabulous bloggers there, received a text from the Uncle watching the kids, which very much sounded like the children were making very good attempts to swindle him on such issues as bedtime and whether a shower is really necessary every day.

Did I mention that Chris mentioned “Stress is just a part of life”?

Cos it is!

Stayed tuned, people – I am inspired!

Massive, massive thanks to LifeLine, Bupa and, of course, Porter Novelli for an awesome night and the amazing work you are all doing.

As for YOU … enjoy Stress Down Day tomorrow. What are your plans for it?

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