You'll find hundreds of files on cleft lip, cleft palate here on

This one is about: How to Stay Calm and De-Stress

(c) 1998 Wide Smiles
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To reduce stress, the first thing we all have to accept is...You canNOT do it all and be it all for everybody unless you tend to YOURSELF now and again. I'm not talking about selfishness, I'm talking about basic maintenance!! Think of yourself as a car, you need gas all the time, an oil change every 3 to 5 thousand miles, and a full maintenance every 30,000 miles.

GAS = go to the library alone, pick out a good book, go to bed early with it and a cup of herbal tea; buy a candle in a fragrance you love and burn it all evening go to the movies, or rent a movie, and vegetate with some M&Ms; start a little cross-stitch project just for yourself

OIL CHANGE = buy yourself a new outfit; eat dinner out with a couple of good friends; go for a walk in a cemetery (they're peaceful places, you can get perspective on your life there); pursue a hobby; picnic and hike in a state park; take an aerobics class OR buy a stretch tape and do it at home (Karen Voight's Pure and Simple Stretch is good!); buy a new CD of your favorite kind of music; subscribe to a magazine you just LIKE


an overnighter at a bed and breakfast
buy yourself a recliner!!
do a "day at the spa" thing, get a massage
get a free facial/makeover at the Estee Lauder/Clinique/whoever counter of a big department store
check and see if there's a beauty school nearby -- they do manicures and pedicures CHEAP for practice, get one of each!

What would YOU like, that's the question!!

There are two important steps to de-stressing, one is to be nice to yourself, indulge a little, relax, think about YOU for a change; and the second (if you're worrying) is to get your mind off of it by doing something that occupies your mind, like crafting or reading a book or watching a movie. You have to WORK at not worrying sometimes!!

Humor is a wonderful de-stresser, if the tension is going to come out somehow you might as well be laughing as crying, don't you think? Although a good cry is a great de-stresser too. So just take care of yourself and occupy your mind with good things and DON'T think that you have to solve everyone's problems!! They may just have something to learn themselves by dealing with their own problems!

A final note, here's a little saying from a poster:

                 Do not feel
                 for everything.
                 That's my job.

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