How stressed am I?
WE COMPLETELY MISSED A CHRISTMAS PARTY because I had the wrong day firmly set in my head AND had even written it on the wrong date on my calendar. Unbelievable. I never miss anything fun. I was sure the party was Saturday night. But when I pulled out the invitation to check the time, I saw it had been Friday night. I'm so thankful I didn't know the time. Imagine showing up at Neighbor-You-Don't-Know-Too-Well-On-The-Next-Street's house the night after.
I just mailed off a We're-Sorry-We-Missed-It Christmas card. And I still feel pretty stupid.
This kind of stress is something we can apply to our characters. Something happens, and the character is pulled in all directions, stressed to the max. Maybe there's lots of things going on in her life. She stumbles over a body on her front sidewalk at night coming home from the hospital where her mother is on death's door. She opens her door, and her little Maltipoo runs out into the street, barely escaping the wheels of a passing car, and into park on the other side. Pile it all on and then have her do something totally out of the ordinary.
I hope your day is less stress-filled than the past month or so of mine have been.