Five Tips to Stay Calm Under Pressure
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Gunaxin has been online for seven years now, and in that time I’ve enjoyed a wealth of opportunities. Above you can see a few examples; speaking at a conference, skating on the Winter Classic ice, driving a Race Car, and meeting celebrities. All of these experiences and many more have one thing in common for me, they create stress and pressure. Anxiety of the unknown, experiencing new things and the potential for embarrassment is always forefront in my mind. Not to mention the stress of plane rides that take me to these places. So over the years as my experiences grow, I’ve learned some tricks for overcoming that stress, and staying calm under pressure that I’d like to share with you.
Regardless of the stressful situation, the first step to overcoming it is breathing. It seems fairly obvious, because without breathing, we don’t live. However I’m talking about the purposeful slower deep breaths. Take a moment, and gather yourself with some long deep breathing. Whatever the anxiety, uncertainty, pressure, or fear that you are feeling will lessen just from taking a moment to breathe. It’s simple, but true.
2) Let It Go!
That Ice Princess was on to something. While listening to little girls sing that damn song over and over again is enough to add more stress to your life, the message is the key here. Whatever the pressure that you’re feeling, just let it go. It’s never as big as you make it out to be in your own mind, and no matter how bad things seem, it could always be worse. Stressing out about the situation you’re in won’t do any good because you’re already in it, so just let it go. Sing the damn song if you have to.
3) Loosen Up
Now that you are breathing and trying to let it go, it’s time to take the next step and loosen up. This refers to both physically and mentally. Do some stretching, massage the tense parts of your body. Crack your back and neck if you feel tension in those areas. At the same time, lighten the mood. Break the tension in the air with a joke, or listen to a favorite song. Do whatever it is that you do that loosens you up, and helps to make you worry free. If that means dancing in your car on the way to a big interview, do it!
4) Essentials and Rituals
When you are under pressure, routine is your friend. It helps return you to a frame of mind of just a regular day. So take care of the essentials, and follow your own rituals, and you’ll relieve the pressure that awaits you. Do you have a big speech to give at work? Then it would likely not be a good idea to get stressed out and forget to take your shower, brush your teeth, and shave. Look good, feel good. It’s all about confidence, comfort and returning yourself to a state of being where you are in control of the situation, just like any other day. Mike Trout claims to eat a sub before every game, do you think the 7th game of the World Series would be a time for him to change that ritual?
5) Enjoy the Moment
Think about the moments that create pressure in your life, most of them are actually opportunities. Stressed about a first date, a big presentation, or a job interview? Those are all opportunities for new great things in your life! Feeling anxiety about playing in the championship game, traveling overseas, or jumping out of an airplane? Many people never get those opportunities, so you should enjoy them, not stress about them. Make the most of the moment, don’t put too much pressure on yourself, and have fun.
Additionally, Philip has served as Rally Director for the Washington Automotive Press Association, Speaker at IMPAcon and Blogs with Balls, Chairman of the Relay For Life of North Anne Arundel County, Examiner Team Leader for the Maryland Performance Excellence Awards, and Credentialed Founder of Capitals Outsider.