Real Talk

REAL TALK was inspired by women asking us important life questions both online and in person.Everything is real for us and sometimes things that may seem so small can be things we aren’t sure how to handle. All about MOM is a conduit – we have access to all sorts of experts who are eager to answer things for us – so please, ask away! We’ll be sure to get back to you on all questions with any relevant links or contacts that may be helpful.
About Cathy

I am so stressed out – how do I relax? I have no time and next to no money. Help.

Sorry to hear about your stress. Unfortunately, you have A LOT of company. Theses days stress is a serious health issue that afflicts people and contributes to a variety of annoying things – like sleep interruption, changes is eating patterns and weight, and it can be a prompt to drug and alcohol consumption, among numerous other ailments.

You have a lot of responsibilities coming at you on many fronts which can be hard to absorb and manage. While overarching stress management is a longer-term focus to understand and implement with help, there are a few simple thigs that you can do regularly that don’t cost a lot, that will make you feel better if you practice them. It will take some time and a commitment from you (stress relief doesn’t happen magically), but surprisingly you don’t have to dramatically alter your life for relief.

Simple Suggestions:
Two APPS – CALM and HEADSPACE. These are bite-sized relaxation APPS that you can do for 5 or 10 minutes (longer if you want). They guide you through each session in a calming way – you can do this on the train or in your bed with coffee before you do anything. It may feel awkward or impossible at first but I promise, if you get into the habit, it will give you some much needed space from your thoughts (which exacerbate stress). Try that.

Another great thing to do is to take a hot bath (or shower if you don’t have a tub). Put in it some lavender Epsom salts which help relax your muscles and the fragrance helps your mind calm. Turn the lights down and light a candle that smells good. Bring your phone into the bathroom and play some soft music. Even if you can only sit for 5 minutes, it literally relieves the tension in your body - you can feel it. Put on comfy sweats after. Lastly – do some listening. There are a series of PODCATS available to you for free that can be inspirational, motivational, spiritual – that will feed your mind and body during your day to day (search the PODCAST APP on your phone; plenty of free ones). This too can be done on the train, the treadmill (if you do that), on a walk, while you’re getting breakfast ready, dressing, etc. Positive words seep into your psyche and help stop your own swirling thoughts, redirecting you.

This all may sound too ‘simple’ – but I promise you, change happens when the smallest steps are taken. Take them for yourself!


I'm not sure how to handle this one. I work in a shared space where there are a number of us that sit close to each other. One of my co-workers wears a strong fragrance that is not only nauseating - but giving be bad headaches. I'm afraid that if I tell her it will cause issues (she's hot headed). I can't take it. What's the best way to fix this with little to no drama?

It's always amazing to me that people are unaware of the strength of there fragrances. (It is also shocking to me that people snap gum and talk on cell phones in full voice in quiet places - but don't get me started).

As for the fragrance issue - it's a tricky one because people do get funny about their perfumes - they are quite personal. In a work environment, it's always best to consult with management about it. Keep it unemotional, and fact-based so as not to get into any personality drama. Let the appropriate person know the physical difficulties (ie: allergic reactions) caused by the fragrance and ask for help with it. The Protocol School of Texas says it best (take a look).

Good luck with it - let us know how it goes.