- A successful career
- Romcom-worthy love life
- A squad enviable enough to turn Taylor Swift green with jealousy
- Social feeds that look like they were curated by the art director of a cool indie magazine
- Disposable income dripping from our purses
- A streetstyle-worthy wardrobe
- A Pinterest-perfect apartment (who cares if it’s rented?)
And whilst yes, we can have it all, and many do (you go Glen Coco!) it’s leaving us with precious little time left on our hands and driving us half way up the wall. And having it all – or at least, trying to – is actually a huge ballache. Or ovaryache or something. It’s stressful as hell and the pressure can get too much and whether it’s that dodgy photo that’s messed up your theme on your Insta-feed, or the fact your best friend got a promotion when you’re still in a dead-end job, sometimes there comes a point where you just think fuck.this.shit. Then in a stressed out rage you deactivate your Instagram profile and upload a really embarrassing picture of your friend on Facebook (just to knock her down a peg.) Nice. Being a perfectionist, this implosion of stress happens to me all of the time, so I’ve figured out four neat ways of dealing with it all.
As Elle Woods so rightly said in Legally Blonde, exercise gives you endorphins, and endorphins make you happy, and happy people just don’t shoot their husbands. Or in other words, lose their shit quite as much. She was really on to something: thousands of studies have proved the benefit of exercise on a healthy mind and lifestyle. So when you’re feeling like you’re head is about to explode, get to the gym and pound that treadmill, lift those weights, or downward dog until all of that negative energy has sweated out of your pores.
Tidy house, tidy mind, as they say. Clutter really can clutter your head up, so take a break and just get things in order in your surroundings physically, then it’ll be a lot easier to do mentally. Plus, the kind of mind-numbing repetitiveness of tidying and cleaning can be pretty therapeutic too.
In the words of Fifth Harmony’s killer song, sometimes, it’s all in my head (well, yours too). Things overplay and we overthink things because there’s only one voice in our heads to answer to. So call your mum or your dad or your best friend just to get it off your chest. It’s surprising how many times I’ve got worked up over something really small, only to actually finally talk about it, then as soon as I’ve finished I’m totally okay, because simply speaking about it has clarified it’s NBD. Friends and family are like free therapy. Use and abuse.
Social media can truly be a source of inspiration sometimes – or at least a few lols thanks to the wonderful world of gifs – but other times, it can be a bit of a black hole of comparison. Other peoples perfectly filtered lives always look so much better than yours, and it can leave us feeling super meh. This is when a mini digital detox works best. Give yourself a night away from the computer and your phone and just go off radar for a few. Read a book, take a walk, have a bath, watch a film (without live-tweeting your emotions and reactions.)
If all else fails, retail therapy.
Photography by Rebecca Spencer