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By Emma Rowley
Calm? Happy? At ease? Well, maybe you shouldn't be. A new psychological study has discovered evidence of a troubling condition suffered by the twenty-first century woman: ORS or Overly Relaxed Syndrome.
Sufferers of ORS typically get through their days with only a modicum of worry or stress, which is bad for a woman's health, the family unit and the economy. "Constant stress is very good for a woman" says Dr Manlove Powers, who is heading up research at the IDNS (Institute for the Discovery of New Syndromes). "It keeps the heart rate and blood pressure high, so the woman is alert and on fighting form at all times. It is also excellent for her family because if a woman is too relaxed and laid-back, her partner and her children may have to start thinking about tedious things, like cleaning or organising the household."
It is a scientific fact that women are born with a 'nurturing' gene, which is absent from male DNA. And without constant aggravation, this gene can mutate and the woman will become selfish and concerned with confusing and pointless questions, such as "What is the purpose of existence?" and "What do I want to achieve in my life?"
Psychologist Suzy Blue has this to say about ORS: "I have seen thousands of women affected by this problem. The invention of washing machines and votes for women seemed like a good idea at the time, but now we know better. Women just do not have enough to worry about each day and frankly, there are growing fears about what they will turn to in an effort to fill those empty hours."
It's not just washing machines that are to blame, of course. Changing attitudes to relationships mean that the average western female now floats through her life like it's a beautiful dream. And of course, it is our husbands and sons who suffer. Peter Petersen, a mechanic from Florida, said, "When our third son was born, I thought I should help out some at home. So, once a week, I'd make sure I was there in the evening, to bath the kids and play with them. But I soon noticed that while I was doing this, my wife would just flop in the chair in what looked like a semi-comatose state. It just wasn't like her. I was scared that if I let her sit down like that, one day she'd never get up again. Now I make sure I don't come home at night. I know that I worry less, for sure."
The message for women is clear: think less and worry more, for a brighter, happier world.
Are you suffering from ORS? Try these top tips for sufferers:
1. Think back to when you were a child. Do you remember how stressed your mother used to get? And how you and your dad would laugh merrily at her concerns? This is entirely natural. Think about it again and practise laughing! But wait - now you're the woman - start worrying!
2. Get your partner to help you out. Nowadays, most men are so thoughtful and caring that women have been denied their right to worry. With a few gentle hints, your partner could soon be leaving all the childcare AND earning worries to you.
3. Try to make time for a daily worry. Begin
with small concerns, which are easy for women to grasp: "Are my toes
ugly?" or "Do visitors notice that strange smell in my house?"
Soon, you'll be able to move on to global or even existential concerns,
like "Does all my driving around on errands contribute to climate
change?" or "What if everyone in the world apart from me is
a soulless droid?"
You'll soon be stressed and panicky in no time at all - and if not, well, isn't that something to worry about?
©2005 Emma Rowley
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Emma Rowley is a 29 year-old Londoner and expert worrier. She is also a writer and editor.