Trick your brain into calm

  • Become aware of your safety and breathing. Your fight or flight response may be in overdrive. 
  • Take note of five things you can see, four things you can hear, three things you can touch, two things you can smell, and one thing you can taste.
  • Quiet your fears by visualizing a stream flowing past you. Each time a thought pops into your head, imagine the thought as a leaf on the stream.

@phammond

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Self Improvement

MORE IDEAS FROM THE ARTICLE

Using affirmations

Remind yourself how awesome you are with affirmations. Write down affirmations that remind you of your capabilities and strengths and keep them somewhere you can find them if nerves strike.

Another suggestion is to keep a file of praise, awards, and other evidence of how good you are at your job an read them when you are struggling with a confidence crisis.

Take a moment to really analyze what you’re feeling and strategize for that.

Can you reframe negative feelings, like fear, into something more positive, like anticipation? If not, remind yourself that it’s perfectly normal to be nervous before a high-stakes situation. 

Phone a friend

If you’ve got a mentor or someone who’s just really good at helping you calm down and focus, reach out.

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RELATED IDEAS

Manage Your Nerves Along the Way
  • If you make a mistake, keep going.
  • Prepare a list of possible questions, in case you're worried people will ask you something you won't know how to answer.
  • If you're asked something you're not really sure about, use a response that goes along the lines of  “That’s a good question. I don’t have the answer right now, but I’ll get back to you on that.” And maybe then turn the question back to the audience.

5

IDEAS

Start journaling, asking specific questions to bring the main issue in focus, to get organized and gain clarity. Ask yourself these four questions:

  1. What feels wrong?
  2. How can the problem be defined?
  3. What are the fears with regards to making changes?
  4. What actions can be taken that would improve the situation?

Slow breathing is a quick and easy way to change your state, whether it is to decrease stress or increase your energy and focus, or even in creative problem-solving. Other science-backed benefits include:

  • There is a short-term reduction in blood pressure after guided, slow breathing exercises.
  • It can alleviate the symptoms of depression and anxiety.
  • It appears to help relieve insomnia.
  • It can improve people’s management of pain.
  • It can help patients cope with chronic conditions like arthritis.

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