• Courtney Phillips

How I’m dealing with stress the week before my pageant

If you follow my social media or this blog very much, you know that I post a lot about my anxiety disorder, which for the most part I’ve managed to overcome and recognize when I need to refocus on myself. Going into a week-long international pageant can be super stressful for anyone, especially someone with anxiety disorder.

Last night, I was having a coaching session, and I said to my coach, “I feel like I’m not ready and there’s so much left to do.” And she ran through her list, and I had all of those things taken care of; then she did a mock interview, and I did well; then she did on-stage questions and I did well. She said to me, “Courtney, I think it’s that you’ve never been this prepared and you’re feeling anxious because you think you should be anxious!” That really resonated with this girl!

So, I thought as I started to focus on my mental health the rest of the evening that I’d take some time to share what I’m doing to work on my stress level going into my pageant. Once you have everything ready to go, you have your list, you’re packed and you have a few hours or a day to relax, here are some things to do to decompress:

  1. Take a break from prep I am doing that right now. I love to write, so writing this blog is part of my self-care! I also took a bubble bath last night – gasp! I have only been reading pageant books and working on my talking points and studying! I sat in the tub and relaxed!

  2. Meditate! I don’t do this often, because I spin through a million items in my mind when I’m trying to “meditate.” But the last two days I have done guided meditations on my Audible App (free ones) that were 3 minutes long and they markedly decreased my heart rate! I literally did one at my desk at work! You can do this too!

  3. Connect with your friends I have had more fun, deep conversations in the last few days than I’ve had in the last year. It’s been to decompress and take my mind off, but It’s been amazing to reconnect! I’ve done this while sitting in traffic the last two days while running around to alterations, workouts, beauty appointments and back and forth to work!

  4. Get enough rest I skipped my 5 am wake-up call to go to spin class. I know that I normally use working out as my healthy coping mechanism, but in this one case getting proper rest was important. So, I went back to my regular schedule of going in the evening and slept until my regular wake-up time. My body was very happy with me!

  5. Ask for help when you need it. We are not Superheroes, as much as we sometimes think we are. When you need help with whatever it is – picking up dry cleaning, running questions for interview, talking through a stressful wardrobe situation, borrowing earrings for an outfit, being talked out of stalking the other contestants on social media – do it! Your friends and family are your “hype crew” and are there for that!

  6. And DO NOT LOOK AT THE OTHER CONTESTANTS ON SOCIAL MEDIA THE WEEK OF THE PAGEANT! They are all beautiful and lovely and amazing and you will only doubt yourself. Wait until you get there to meet them! Comparison is the number cause of self-consciousness and you do not need that! You have worked too hard and are far too amazing! (Talking to every girl who has ever competed in a pageant as well as myself here!) I can honestly say that in my last pageant that I had no idea what any of the other girls were wearing in any stage of competition or what their platforms were. BUT I did leave that pageant with two of my best forever friends, so it’s not about being distant; it’s about not comparing yourself!

That’s all I have for not, loves! I’m heading back into full-on prep mode until I leave on Sunday! I will try to do some blogs about how pageant week went when I get back!

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