How to Jury-rig Your Stress-o-Meter

Written by on October 25, 2012

Three part-time jobs: bird-dogging for a software business, tutoring four kids, and writing while burning the candle at both ends caught up with me. It was eleven at night. I rubbed my eyes with my palms and looked groggily at my computer screen. I was just getting ready to beat myself up for not canvassing more of the town for sales, making a fresh casserole, or restocking the sock drawer. Was I going to go bird-dogging barefoot tomorrow?

I took a deep breath and shifted gears. I shot up a prayer and a couple of ideas came to mind – how to bring down the points on the stress-o-meter.

  • Break big tasks down into small ones.  I reorganized my office space last week – sorted, stacked, and labeled piles of books, papers, and crates. I took this large job and assigned one small task each day. I was finished inside of a week. And guess what? After reorganizing, I found everything I needed faster and easier.
  • Give up perfection.  At recent Toastmasters meetings I emceed, I purposely wore mismatched socks and shoes, and yanked up my slacks so everyone could see. “We’re not interested in perfection here,” I said. “We’re more about progression. This is a safe place to make mistakes.”
    Comparison as an art form declares, “I’m more than I was yesterday. Less than I’ll be tomorrow.”

Do you identify with any of these? If so, which ones?   When your stress points climb, how do you keep your head in the game?

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Comments
  1. jane West   On   October 25, 2012 at 6:35 pm

    Ha! I can SO identify this this, Lynn. How about coming over and straightening up MY office? Nah, wouldn’t be the same. I need to do it myself; discipline myself to be more orderly. I know about how nice it is to be neat, and able to find things. Imagine that! Thanks for the nudge. I WILL make some order in this paper/book chaos.

    • Lynn Hare   On   October 27, 2012 at 3:50 pm

      Jane, happy to hear we have something in common! Glad to hear I’m not the only writer who needs to stay on top of their clutter! It seems to take on a life of its own, huh?

  2. Nancey West   On   October 27, 2012 at 10:39 am

    I love the mismatched socks! I worry about looking good when I speak. No one expects me to be perfect so why should I? But I don’t just settle for what I am. I strive to keep growing; more than I was, less than I’ll be. Thanks for the encouragement.

  3. Lynn Saint   On   October 29, 2012 at 11:51 am

    Truly, I have worn mismatched shoes and socks unwittingly. I really LIKE your willingness to demonstrate the mismatch. How the people must have been put at ease when you showed them. Willing to be laughed at/with is a gift. I have come home to find my shirt inside out, spinach between my teeth, odd shoes, odd socks. It’s somewhat of a bummer when it is unintentional. :o) Thank you for sharing the joy.

    • Lynn Hare   On   October 31, 2012 at 3:26 pm

      Lynn, yes, I’ve had my share of times with lettuce between my teeth, tags hanging out of my collar, and price tags left on new shoes that I wore to work! Nice to know I’m not alone. Thanks for your comment!

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