Today in our tour of 30 Chic Days, Mme. Ferris suggests that we give up trying to control everything and turn in our drama queen crowns and instead “adopt a low-drama way of being.” That’s not to say that some things are worth getting upset over, but she’s right. Life is full of unexpected change and that’s going to be true whether you pitch a fit over every little thing or whether you handle things with aplomb. She points out that our brains can’t tell the difference between real and perceived disaster; either one causes the body to react, in part by releasing stress hormones such as cortisol. (Cortisol is linked to the accumulation of abdominal fat, so yes – being a drama queen is not so good for your waistline as well as throwing off your mental well-being!)
I’m working my way through these 30 Chic Days during December, which can be an incredibly stressful time. I’ve said before that everyone should have to work in retail or a restaurant during the holidays – I think we’d acquire a great deal of compassion if we had to do that. Sure, people can be thoughtless, snarky, and downright mean. Switching your perspective can work wonders – maybe that cashier who seems distracted and can’t even count change properly is a stressed-out parent wondering if the bank account will stretch to cover presents for the kids. Maybe that couple driving so slowly is having a conversation about the oncology report one of them just received. You get the idea.
Nobody’s out to get you. Things just happen sometimes. There’s no need to make every single battle the one you want to win, no matter what. Mme. Ferris suggests channeling your chic mentor – either a real-life model or an idealized one (I’m pretty sure Audrey Hepburn never screamed at a waitress, for instance!) – and letting your hands dangle at your sides instead of balling them up into fists.
It’s the holidays. Spread cheer, especially to people you don’t think deserve it. It won’t cost you a cent and it’s far more relaxing than bellowing like a gored ox.
Come back tomorrow for Day 12!