Destressing: What’s your recipe?

Being a lover of all things procrastinatory, I am a devoted watcher of House Hunters. Last night it was about this sixty-something powerhouse of energy, a trauma surgeon, who decided she wanted to move from her current home in Indiana back to her home town of Fargo, ND.

Ya gotta love someone with the spunk to choose to move to Fargo. And I certainly respect and appreciate people who are not afraid of cold weather. I’m growing more like them with every Florida summer (and every hot flash suffered therein).

As the narrator skimmed over an abbreviated portrait of the woman, she mentioned how this trauma surgeon’s way to destress was to give dinner parties for 24. Uh-huh … waitWHAT?  [Camera cuts to me choking on my popcorn.]  Having 24 people in your house expecting to be fed and entertained is a stress RELIEVER?

This boggled my mind. My husband and I invite one couple to dinner and I’m a twitching knot of stress. And then there’s that business of the having 24 friends. She has 24 friends?

I can just see her leaving after a long day at her stressful job of emergency tracheotomies, attempted suicides and traumatic brain injuries and saying to herself, “I am absolutely done in. I need to relax. What shall I do? I think I’ll go to the supermarket, pick up a 30-pound turkey and make a dinner so big it deserves its own ZIP code and invite 20 or 30 of my closest friends over to eat it with me! Perfect! I’m feeling zen already.”

Maybe this has you wondering: what’s my recipe for stress? Not being a fan of leaving anything to chance, I am an inveterate list-keeper — so of course I have a list for destressing!

1. Put on sweats.

There’s really no step 2; that’s it. Yeah, my smart-aleck husband says “open a bottle of wine,” but really. Everything after step 1 is gravy. And you can be sure that having a dinner party for 24 is nowhere in there.

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