Stress Anyone?

It’s not a surprise when we hear that we have high levels of stress in our modern world. It’s kind of a ‘No Kidding!’ moment. So finding good ways to de-stress is important. My favorite stress-reducer? Laughing at the absurd things we sometimes do as stressed human beings.

I was reminded of this recently. It started like this. After a long day, I was falling asleep watching television. So I paused the program, turned off the TV, and went to bed. Unfortunately, I forgot to turn off my sound bar, which plays the sound from the television programs even if the TV is off.

At 12:38 am I was shocked awake by an “EMERGENCY ALERT” klaxon. I was in Full Adrenaline Alert. Jumped out of bed. We are in “high fire danger” weather after all.

But I couldn’t find the source. I even called the police department to make sure there wasn’t an evacuation alert I had missed. No. Thank Goodness!

Finally I realized it had been a ‘test of the emergency broadcast alert system’ on my television, which had played through my sound bar. Whew! Double Whew! Crisis averted.

Any guesses about how long it took me to fall back asleep? Yep. You know it.

So, of course, this morning, I was tired. It registered how very tired I was when I nearly tossed my nightclothes into the trashcan instead of the laundry hamper. Oh, good grief!

At that point, I started laughing at myself. Totally absurd. (Bad joke warning: Of course, putting your dirty clothes in the trash would dramatically cut down on the amount of laundry you need to do.)

Why was I able to laugh about nearly throwing away my nightclothes? Because a few years ago, my sister and I decided to make ourselves a ‘life tips’ list of the silly things we have done or nearly done when stressed. Now, rather than getting upset, we laugh about it. My latest of course is ‘Dirty clothes belong in the laundry hamper, not the trash.’

Hoping this might bring you a smile, I’m sharing a few ‘life tips’ you may have experienced, too:

  • Your morning coffee will taste much better if you remember to put the coffee beans in the coffee maker before turning it on. (I think that’s why coffee makers now can be set up the night before. There is a real flaw in the logic of a tired person who hasn’t had any coffee trying to make coffee early in the am.)
  • Water will boil faster if you turn on the burner.
  • If you’ve already put your keys in your pants pocket, you will not be able to find them in your purse or on your dresser.
  • You cell phone won’t be in your pocket, or anywhere else in your house, if you are currently talking on your cell phone. (Discovered this one several times!)
  • Your glasses can’t be found on your desk, table or countertop if you are wearing them on the top of your head.
  • Milk goes in the fridge, not back in the cabinet with the cereal. (Happily I caught myself as I was doing that one.)
  • If you step in the bathtub to quickly wash something off your feet, be sure your shower lever is turned to ‘off’ to avoid unintentionally baptizing yourself.
  • Ladies, your green eyeliner pencil will not create the effect you want if you accidentally use it as your eyebrow pencil. (Unless, of course, you wanted green eyebrows)
  • If you have more than one tube of products in your bathroom, be sure that tube you squirted really was the toothpaste tube before putting your toothbrush in your mouth.

You get the idea. So when the inevitable happens, and we do something that demonstrates that yes, we are stressing, feel free to join me in laughing at ourselves being human. Create your own list to share. It’s a delightful way to de-stress. Laughter truly is the best medicine.

Terry Turner
As a military brat, Terry’s early life was spent enjoying other countries and cultures. Add to this her forty years of teaching Communication Skills in both aerospace and education, and she has many ideas to share and stories to tell. Now happily retired and living in Northern California, she spends her time writing and enjoying life.
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11 Responses

  1. Avatar Marcie Vega says:

    Thanks, Terry! Needed that this morning!!

  2. Avatar Mimi Moseley says:

    This was so fun! Thanks!

  3. Avatar Candace C says:

    …and check your feet before you head out the door to work to make sure you’re wearing a pair of matched shoes. I agree Terry, laughter is the best medicine! Thanks for the reminder.

    • Terry Turner Terry Turner says:

      Oh, Candace! How could I forget that one? Laughing at myself again. Once I discovered that rarest of rare things – a comfortable pair of high heels for work. So I bought one pair in black and one pair in navy blue. And I’m sure you can guess the rest. When someone joined me in chuckling at myself that day, she remarked, “And I’ll bet you have another pair just like that at home!” So glad you enjoyed this.

  4. Joanne Snyder Joanne Snyder says:

    Thank you for a great read.
    Once when I was talking to my principal in my classroom, I reached down into my desk drawer to get a lip balm stick to apply. I mumbled good-by when he left and then realized why my mouth felt so stiff.
    I’d used a glue stick instead of the lip balm.

    • Terry Turner Terry Turner says:

      ROFLOL!! (rolling on the floor, laughing out loud) Thank you So much, Joanne. What a great example of the things we can do. And I’m laughing so hard because I can just see myself doing the Exact same thing. And of course, I’m wondering if the principal noticed, and was curious about the process. This is a whole new chapter of ‘keeping our lips sealed when talking to the principal’. Thank you for sharing this delightful example!

  5. Avatar George Grover says:

    You never cease to amaze me…what a delightful piece…thanks again for sharing…

  6. Avatar Barbara Stone says:

    Yeah, and don’t set your water bottle next to the turpentine when you are painting. They look alike but they do not taste alike. But hey, I can say I’ve tasted turpentine. BTW, it has no flavor at all!

    Thanks for the laugh, Terry!