How to Cope With Stress During Pageant Week

Pageant week is an endurance race and coping with the stress is half the battle. Learning to adapt to your surroundings and remain emotionally neutral during times of stress will help you perform at your best free. Try these helpful tips!

1. Meditate: No matter how jam packed your events calendar is, set aside some time for reflection, prayer and gratitude.

2. Surround yourself with positive people: It's important to be selective when it comes to communication with the outside world. You need to stay focused and pageant week is no time for negativity from the peanut gallery. Stay off of internet forums and any other social network where people are discussing their opinions of the competition.

3. Set realistic goals: I believe every contestant should play to win. However, it is also important to set smaller goals along the way. Whether it is winning a swimsuit award, making the top ten or simply feeling more confident than you did in your last pageant, remember that this is your journey. Make it what you want it to be. Be mindful that pageant results are based on the opinion of just a few judges. On a different night, with a different set of judges, you could have a completely different outcome.

4. Leave the past in the past: Past performance has little to do with how you perform today. I have seen many girls sabotage their own confidence due to fears of past outcomes and expectations. Remember you are a sum of all your experiences. Learn from the past but don't let it define you.

5. Lean on your support system: Take time to check in with those people who have the ability to comfort and empower you. You have the power to create your dream team. From parents and friends to coaches and directors, you are a direct reflection of those closest to you.

6. Visualize positive results: We achieve what we believe we can achieve. If you expect yourself to fail, you will likely fail. Rest in your authenticity, and you will thrive as the best version of yourself.

7. Plan ahead: Organize study tools, wardrobe, accessories, appearance attire and other necessities so you can enjoy pageant week free from the stress that stems from disarray. Plan for a few extra outfits and a back-up gown to avoid crisis in the event of a dreaded wardrobe malfunction.

8. Recognize the big picture: A pageant is merely one exercise in goal setting in the greater scheme of your life. At this time in your life, you are working on every aspect of who you are. You are performing at your absolute best physically, mentally and emotionally. Whether you win a crown or not, carry these skills with you through ever challenge, dream and goal. It will serve you well, and may lead you to something far greater than you ever imagined. 

You are in control of your mindset. Make a conscious effort to prepare mentally and emotionally for your pageant. This will help you handle the unexpected and shine as you hoped you would. Stay positive and enjoy your experience!

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