BEDN #6: National Stress Awareness Day

Mount St Helens
Mount St Helens September 2012
Disney Paris
Disneyland Paris April 2013
National Stress Awareness Day is our topic for BEDN today and we’re talking about how we deal with stress. Funnily enough, I’m a strange one (you would never think that, would you!) and I actually thrive under stress. Give me 2 weeks to do something, and it’ll be, meh, not so great. Give me a night, it’ll be the most amazing thing I’ve ever produced. Put me under stress and you get the best results out of me.
Disclaimer: this is not something I recommend! Trying to do your dissertation in one night is NEVER going to go down well. My trick to get myself to do something well (or at least when I was at uni): pretend it’s due tomorrow and attack it. I end up with a pretty good piece of work, done under a lot of pressure, but I actually have time to sort bits out that may have gone wrong. This is why I was much better at exams than coursework, and luckily a lot of my work relied heavily on performing well in exams!
Rodeo New England July 2013 (love mine and my sisters’ faces in the last one!!)
The most stressful situation I’ve encountered though was teaching. And I think I’m allowed to say that it was waaay more stressful than a lot of other jobs, particularly because I’d never *ever* taught before, was also learning how to teach at the same time, and had 11 to 18 year olds in my care, some of whom were applying to do my subject at the most prestigious universities in the UK. And that’s not to mention the illness I was suffering at the time.
Yes, at times I was completely snowed under with work, but I just about managed to keep going, despite the fact that I was working until gone 10pm every night and starting work at 8am every morning – some nights I was even in school till that time. It might not sound too bad, considering that you get holidays and all being a teacher, but remember that I was brand new to it, in a subject that’s a minority (Classics and Latin), so having to create all of my own resources too. So every single lesson I taught was brand new material created the week (or night!) before. And considering that it was a private boarding school too where parents pay thousands to send their children, I was under a lot of pressure to do it well!
One strategy I have to cope with stress now is knowing that I won’t be putting myself in to that situation again! I managed to cope with it, but only just. If I hadn’t been so ill, I think I would still be there, and apparently it becomes less stressful over the time you’re there! For those that don’t know about the illness I suffered, I had gallstones and had my gallbladder removed over Christmas then got an infection following the operation, but still carried on teaching to the point where I fainted at school (luckily not during a lesson!).
Peak District
Peak District
Peak District Weekend break October 2013 (unattractive photos…I am wearing a Sulley onesie, but perfectly illustrate our Peak District weekends!)
So, that turned into a tale of why I decided not to go into teaching as a career! I’ll try to get back on point! Now, I don’t have too much stress in my life, luckily! I do still like to surround myself with things to do though and have big ideas about these too. At the moment, along side full time work, I also run this blog, the Thomas the Baker blog and Big Cup Little Cup. Yes, sometimes this can get a little stressful because I’m constantly juggling content, photography and design in my few free hours I have on an evening. But I do them because I enjoy them, and am even trying to squeeze more in there! Weirdly, the thing that should stress me, work, is not a source of stress considering that I do a lot of things I would do in my free, non-stressed, time anyway. I blog to relax!
But if I wasn’t doing that, I would be reading whatever book I could find in the bath, ultimate de-stress for me (although I currently am not allowed baths in an attempt to prevent further infections so I don’t have to have a procedure done on my urethra – no thank you!). Obviously, I also love holidays with my family and friends, and this is an amazing way to de-stress, even if it’s just a few days away from home (or near home in the cabin in a month!). So that’s why I’m putting holiday pictures in here 🙂
And that’s enough of my rambles for now – I have managed to do it again!!
Astoria September 2013


1 Comment

  1. November 7, 2013 / 11:50 am

    Great topic dear! I too work better under stress, quite weird! Plus I’m a huge procrastinator and just can’t help leaving things at the last minute! Teaching is super stressful indeed, I can only imagine! Always a pleasure reading your amazing blog! <3

    Liana x
    Dress Code Chic

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