Win A Pageant

16: Managing Pre-Pageant Stress

episode-16-featured-imageRight before a pageant, it seems chaos comes crashing in…. women get sick and lose their voice, drop their keys in a street drain, break down emotionally, spill coffee on their laps, get into fender benders…personally, I backed into my own garage once before a pageant — these things aren’t normal….except the month before a pageant! They are a result of extreme stress with your mind whirling around one million things, trying to store details and be gorgeous, poise, and nearly perfect the whole time.

No wonder you’re going bonkers! I’ve been there, too. I’ve been so overwhelmed with something larger than me that eventually it boils over into a disaster.

I don’t want that to happen to you. So, Here are a few basic ways you can manage your stress before it boils over into an all-out disaster. 

Use a to-do list, don’t rely on your brain

Your brain is trying to remember so many things, there isn’t enough room to remember stuff you need to do. I keep a giant paper with all the stuff on it and then check it of as I get them done. I’m also adding new things to the list as they come up, too, but I keep it all in one place – I recommend the cloud so you aren’t also worried about losing it! 

Do one thing at a time

Time-block what needs to get done and do it. Give yourself exactly enough time to finish a task and 30 minutes rest in between each task. If you need to label all your wardrobe, give yourself 60 minutes and a 30 minute break before you start to pack your underwear. Sometimes you’ll run over and sometimes you’ll just need to turn off your brain and take a few deep breaths. Give yourself plenty of time. 

Have everything prepared

Be prepared at least 10 days before the pageant, things always creep up! Be 100% ready for competition at least 1 week prior to leaving. 

Say “no thanks” to additional responsibilities

Whether it’s planning an event, over-agreeing/ over-committing – Instead, say “I’m going to be prioritizing my competition that week, and I think it’s better for me to not commit since I don’t know what may come up and I want to be sure I don’t have to cancel on you at the last minute.” 

Prepare for the post-pageant duties

Have all your stuff ready for when you get back, so you don’t also have to have that stuff in your mind. Prepare your thank you cards, press releases…I usually keep a stack of responsibilities at home, school and work on my desk with a to do list so when I return (from a pageant or any trip), it’s waiting for me. 


Meditate, get a massage, take a bath – do the things that make you take a load off. It’ll give you time to reconnect with yourself, your energy, and your maker so you are confident in your abilities. When I competed, my Aunt Darlene and cousin Mandy always gifted me a massage at our local spa. I loved being able to de-compress and release tension before – and sometimes after – the big day.

Bottom line, pay attention to your emotions and how they are effecting your actions. You should be able to maintain control of your actions. You can’t win a pageant as a ball of stress. When you start feeling like your having an out-of-body experience – it’s gone to far. Jump in a bubble bath with your day planner and start create an action plan to soothe your stress.

That, ladies is how you win a pageant. 

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