If you get anxious before going into an important meeting or dread the thought of public speaking it’s time to put your creative energies to better use and stop the butterflies in your stomach…
Typically when we feel nervous or anxious we have an internal dialog going on in our minds – it’s like having the devil on one shoulder and an angel on the other, telling us what’s good and bad about the situation we’re in.
These ‘voices’ can be helpful but they can also distort your perception of reality. So what can you do? Follow this simple 3 step plan and make those voices work for y
1. Deal With The Devil
First and foremost you need to deal with the negative, nagging doubt. Write down everything you’re thinking and feeling that’s got you worried about the impending event, and write it from a negative point of view. So for example, if you’re worried about giving a presentation you might be experiencing negative thoughts such as “I’m not good enough” or “I haven’t prepared enough for this”. Jot your thoughts down and make your list as long as possible.
2. The Angel Angle
Now it’s time to get positive. Using the same event write down the positive thoughts and feelings you have i.e. “This is a great opportunity for me to show how good I am at this” or “I’m really looking forward to entertaining this group of people”. Again, make your list as long as possible.
3. The Reality Check
Read through your two lists, and next to each statement ask yourself ‘Is it True, False or Don’t Know?’. True is something that’s free from judgment and provable, whereas False is stuff that you know is rubbish and can’t be substantiated.
Reading this article isn’t enough – you need to put pen to paper to experience how this exercise will provide you with a new perspective. It will also identify areas of opportunity and new ideas on how you can get the most out of the situation by exploring the ‘Don’t Knows’.
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