The Stress Myth


  • The Gen Z hit list – THE STRESS MYTH by Scarlet Curtis

    I’m just so stressed,” I sigh, flinging myself onto the sofa at my best friend’s house and putting my feet up on her table. It was a Saturday, and I had woken 30 minutes earlier from a luxurious afternoon nap. In the sliding scale of stress — from Deliciously Ella’s yoga teacher to Rob Kardashian’s publicist — I was hovering around the medic who supplied antibiotics for urinary-tract infections to the citizens of Love Island. Busy? Yes. Mind-bogglingly tired and unable to function? Most definitely not. And yet in a world where the “Still at work at 9pm” Insta Story selfie has become de rigueur, “I’m so tired and stressed” seems to be my (probably undeserved) catchphrase.

    A popular belief about members of the younger generation is that we’re not used to —and don’t expect — hard work. From my limited experience, most of the millennials I know are hard working, driven and thoroughly deserving of the pay cheque they use to cash in on avocado toast. The problem is not an unwillingness to work hard, but the glamorisation of being over worked, overtired and overemployed. Having five jobs, three side hustles and 236 unread emails is the new cool in 2017, and there is a badge of honour about being the busiest, most frantic and most sleep-deprived in your peer group. When did it become cool to work through the weekend? To catch up on emails until 1am? To have no time to shower because you’re so busy?

    In reality, there’s nothing cool about being the girl who’s “literally too busy to go to the loo ”. In fact, it probably means you’re just not very good at your job. Weekends exist for a
    reason, and when I do have to work through them, it’s only because I’ve spent too much of the week catching up on Netflix instead of answering emails. We need to end the romanticisation of the desk dinner right now, as the only thing it can realistically lead to is guilt when you finally do have time off. I’ve decided to eliminate “I’m so stressed” from my vocabulary for the next few weeks, and in honour of taking some time to “chill the f*** out”, this week’s hit list is a collection of Gen-Z infused offerings to help you switch off, switch on or just get a little more pink in your life.

    If it were possible to propose marriage to a film, then I’d be walking The Big Sick down the aisle before it had time to find something blue. Written by the amazing Emily Gordon and
    her husband, comedian Kumail Nunjiani, this is as close to perfect as rom-coms come. If you’re looking for a way to bliss out at the weekend, I can seriously recommend going to the cinema, supporting independent film and preparing to fall in love with actor and comedian Ray Romano .

    If you didn’t already hate me from the time I told you to follow a hedgehog on Instagram, then be prepared to never read this column again. Spacemasks is the sparkly name for a single-use, self-heating eye mask that I think might have changed my life. After stealing one from the Style beauty cupboard (aka Sarah Jossel’s room where dreams come true), I settled down into a nice hot bath and decided to give it a go. I was sceptical, but 20 minutes of uninterrupted meditation later, I was a convert; I’m even thinking about starting a cult. Something about the hot pack resting on your eyes makes all worries disappear. They cost £15 for a box of five, and you can buy them from Thank me later.


    Unless a trip to LA is on your agenda, then exploring this popart phenomenon IRL may not be possible, but I would highly recommend a scroll of #thepinkhouse on Instagram. Devised by social-media artist @TheMostFamousArtist, the Pink House project consists of three soon-to-be-destroyed derelict houses that have been spray-painted bright “millennial” pink. The results are apparently a comment on the state of modern art and modern housing; although I’m not sure the millennials all lining up for a selfie picked up on that part.

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