5 Unusual Techniques to Stay Confident Under Extreme Pressure

You’re reading 5 Unusual Techniques to Stay Confident Under Extreme Pressure, originally posted on Pick the Brain | Motivation and Self Improvement. If you’re enjoying this, please visit our site for more inspirational articles.

You freeze. Your mind races furiously, as you try to come up with a reply.

Time seems to stretch forever while everyone in the room looks at you for an answer, the silence growing louder every second.

You know the work inside out, but yet, at this crucial moment, your mind seems to have shut down.

And you can’t help thinking:

What is wrong with me? Why does my mind always freeze when I need it most?

I am so embarrassed.

Why can’t I be like other people who are calm and confident?

The truth is, mind freeze is absolutely normal and there’s nothing to feel ashamed of.

It’s simply our body’s way of reacting and protecting us when we are in a stressful situation. Even the most seasoned politicians have frozen during presidential debates.

While this is normal, it’s still extremely painful to go through it. The blow to our confidence can be debilitating, as we start questioning our capabilities and beat ourselves up.

It doesn’t have to be this way. With a little practice, staying confident under pressure can be achieved.

Here are some unusual but effective techniques that help you overcome the freeze and feel confident and composed in a high-stress situation.

 

Reset Your Mind

When our mind goes blank under high pressure, it’s because our body feels overwhelmed by the situation and shuts down.

To break the freeze cycle, use a distracting image or thought to cut through the overwhelm and reset your mind.

Choose a distracting thought that has nothing to do with the situation. For example, pick an image that makes you laugh, so it eases the tension and relaxes you.

You could decide on an anchor image ahead of time so it’s easy to recall whenever you need it. For example, I use an image of Homer Simpson dreaming of donuts and going “Mmm…donuts.” It’s an unexpected image in the middle of something serious, and it’s funny.

Doing this interrupts your mind from the current stress and anxiety, since it switches its attention to this new thought.

This helps to reset your mind so you can get back on track during the situation.

Relaxed Face Technique

Whenever we feel stress, one of the first areas to tense up are our jaw and facial muscles. This tends to go unnoticed because it happens so quickly and unconsciously that we are unaware that it’s happening.

So when you feel flustered in a high-stress situation, put your attention on the back of your jaw, and consciously let go of the tension. Relaxing the jaw muscles, helps your facial muslces to relax, which also signals to the rest of the body to let go of tension.

This helps you feel calmer, reduces feelings of anxiety flooding your body, and enables you to think more clearly.

Embrace the Elephant in the Room

Fighting the anxiety when you are under pressure takes up an incredible amount energy. It feels like you are repeatedly knocking your head against a massive, blank wall that surrounds you.

In this state, fighting it only serves to heightens your anxiety and makes it worse.

Instead of fighting it, acknowledge its presence. Don’t judge it, just breathe into it, observe it, and let it flow through and out of you.

Letting it pass through you helps you bounce back and into the present quickly, which empowers you to handle the situation with confidence.

Call out Your Fears

When we feel fear, the mind can feel like a runaway train, exaggerating the negative effects on us. It becomes an oppressive dark cloud that threatens to swallow us whole, and skyrockets our panic to stratospheric levels.

However, when we bring the fear out into the open, we often realize that the reality is not as bad as we thought it would be.

So, call out the fear and address it: What is it that you are fearful about? What is the worst that could happen? Is this worst fear likely to occur or is it an exaggerated projection?

This helps us put things into perspective that the outcome of a stressful situation is not as bad as it seems, and cools down the build up of frantic anxiety.

Be The Ball of Light in the Room

Our body language, and how we project our energy has large physiological effects on our confidence and how we feel.

Project confidence by imagining a ball of energy that extends outward from you to about 1 feet from your body. This is your inviolable, sacred space. Carry yourself with this projected confident energy radiating outwards.

When we move with confidence, we feel confident and energized, which others can sense immediately. As they react and reflect back the positive energy towards you, this results in a cumulative positive feedback loop, which creates more confidence within you.

Move Forward Positively

Having your mind go blank during the most crucial moments can crush your confidence.

But it doesn’t have to be this way.

Just putting into practice some simple techniques can have a dramatic effect on your ability to stay calm and confident in the face of pressure.

Imagine feeling composed and self-assured, as you answer questions with ease and poise in a high stakes meeting.

Knowing that you are able to truly display the wealth and depth of the expertise you possess and articulate it clearly and confidently.

All it takes is just one step. Pick one or two of the techniques that appeal to you and try it out tomorrow.

And you will be on your way to bringing out the composed and confident you that’s been there all along.


Shan Foo is an irreverent Sociologist who’s on a mission to help folks get out of confusion, leverage their full potential and step into an amazing career. Join the Free Amazing Career Community, with how-to videos on navigating career & mindset challenges, an expanding video content library and community support.

You’ve read 5 Unusual Techniques to Stay Confident Under Extreme Pressure, originally posted on Pick the Brain | Motivation and Self Improvement. If you’ve enjoyed this, please visit our site for more inspirational articles.

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Best Wedding Photos Around the World Celebrate the Fearless Art of Love

Wedding photographers have the honor—and the difficult job—of capturing the emotion and celebration of brides and grooms around the world. And increasingly, people are looking for wedding photography that moves away from the stilted, posed photographs of the past in lieu of capturing the candid moments that make up the day.

Fearless Photographers, a website that helps you find the best wedding photographers near you, curates a gallery of stunning wedding imagery every two months. These Fearless Awards, selected by a rotating panel of award-winning wedding photographers, highlight the best in unique, artistic images that weave the tale of matrimony around the world.

From tender black and white images of relatives to joyful photographs of the happy couple, each photographer places an artistic spin on their work. More documentary than posed, many winning images show moments we can all relate to, whether it’s welling up with tears during the ceremony or seeing a little one crashing at the reception after eating too much cake.

Take a look at some of the best wedding photography from the Fearless Awards, and if you’re searching for the perfect photographer for your special day, you can use their list to browse by location. You’ll then be able to see each photographer’s social links, rates, award-winning images, and reach out to them for availability.

Fearless Photographers—a website that connects you to top wedding photographers around the world—selects the best in wedding photography every two months for their Fearless Awards.

Fearless Awards - Best Wedding Photography

Photo: Sabina Mladin

creative wedding photography

Photo: Gerhard Nel

wedding photographers near me

Photo: Dianne Bouman

Fearless Awards - Best Wedding Photographers

Photo: Fabio Mirulla

Fearless Awards - Best Wedding Photographers

Photo: Lyndah Wells

Fearless Awards - Best Wedding Photographers

Photo: Eugene Michel

Fearless Awards - Best Wedding Photographers

Photo: Sabina Mladin

Fearless Awards - Best Wedding Photographers

Photo: Anthony Phung

Fearless Awards - Best Wedding Photographers

Photo: Megan Hannah

Fearless Awards - Best Wedding Photography

Photo: Donatas Ufo

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The Master of Eglfing-Haar

If we didn’t know much about Eugen Gabritschevsky the person, and limited ourselves to the reproductions of his work in the show’s valuable and handsome accompanying catalog—it presents many more pictures than were in the museum’s exhibition—we might not at first assume that their author was a schizophrenic patient living in a psychiatric hospital. We might, rather, wonder whether we were encountering a newly discovered modern master, a kind of Paul Klee, say, whose each small-size picture feels like its own self-contained world.

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If Heaven Ain’t a Lot Like Disney

The Florida Project is a snapshot of chaos, focused on a heedlessly dissolute young mother and her rambunctious six-year-old daughter. Each wonderfully inventive in her way, the two are living week to week during summer vacation in a shabby $38-a-night motel on a strip just beyond the perimeter of Disney’s Magic Kingdom. The film is not hallucinatory but, for almost its entirety, Disney World can only be sensed as something that has irradiated the local landscape.

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How Can Retailers Survive The Millennial Apocalypse?

Millennials are the largest and most diverse generation in American history. They are the generation that grew up in a serious economic crisis. They went to college at a time when public funding for education was drying up but they still had to go to college to get a job, so they dutifully took on all the expenses through student loans.

Then, they graduated and found out that there were no jobs, so they moved back in with their parents to save money until things got better. They have put off things like getting married, buying houses, and starting families to focus on getting their student loans paid off. This proved to be a much more difficult task than they ever could have imagined.

But, rather than foregoing any sort of human experience in favor of the “work, pay bills and die” cycle, Millennials have come up with some creative ways to thrive under difficult circumstances.

How Do Millennials Afford Stuff?

More accurately, Millennials prefer to spend their money on experiences than on stuff. Rather than filling homes with brand new consumer goods, Millennials opt to share things they want via the sharing economy.

Many Millennials have figured out they don’t need to own cars when they have Lyft. They don’t need to own DVDs and CDs when they can stream movies and music online. They don’t need to own vacation homes when there’s Airbnb. And they don’t need to buy an expensive cocktail dress when they can rent one.

Millennials are still getting all the things they need and want in life, but they are just doing it in a way that is disruptive to retailers.

How Is This Affecting Retail?

Retailers are scrambling to understand how to sell things to Millennials. Brick and mortar stores are failing at alarming rates. But, there is one sector that is growing faster than traditional brick and mortar retailers – secondhand retailers.

Millennials are solving the problem of having nothing to wear and no money to spend on anything by buying secondhand. They find it easier to find unique and high-quality things through the online secondhand retail sector.

thrift store

According to ThredUp:

  • 78% of women are bored by traditional retail and 63% say they prefer secondhand because of the thrill of the hunt
  • Secondhand stores are growing 5 times as fast as discount retailers
  • 52% of secondhand shoppers do so for environmental reasons
  • 50% of secondhand shoppers say their purchases take the place of discount store purchases

There Is A Definite Environmental Reason For Secondhand Shopping Among Millennials

millennial generation values

Millennials and those over 65 share a love of shopping secondhand for different reasons. Both grew up during economic hardships. While that is the main influencing factor for older folks who shop secondhand, Millennials are strongly motivated by environmental concerns.

See Also: 6 Things That Can Help You In Understanding Millennials Better

How Can Retailers Survive Millennial Apocalypse?

Retailers will need to change their game plan if they want to stay in the game at all. The largest and most diverse generation in American history wants to buy secondhand and major brick and mortar retailers are starting to take notice.

Sure, you’ve always been able to sell back your used video games and accessories at Gamestop, which is probably why the specialty retailer is still in business. But now, more traditional retailers are starting to follow suit. REI and Patagonia have both recently launched online retail sites to sell used outdoor gear and repaired clothing.

We have always been able to buy factory refurbished cell phones from the carriers, so it just makes sense that retailers of all kinds of merchandise could follow suit and offer repaired returns and used items at a discount. After all, that is clearly what the consumers want.

So, is this really a Millennial-induced retail apocalypse?

Only if retailers aren’t willing to listen to what consumers want and adjust their strategies accordingly. Forcing new merchandise on consumers who clearly don’t want it and don’t have the money to spend on it anyway is not going to be a worthwhile business strategy for this generation.

Are you listening to your customers?

Learn more about Millennial shoppers from this infographic.

Millennial shopping habits [infographic]

The post How Can Retailers Survive The Millennial Apocalypse? appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

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Words of Advice To Keep Your Joints Healthy

As a woman, it is only natural that your health is one of the most important parts of your life. Once you pass a certain age, you might have to deal with specific problems, such as arthritis. Left untreated, this condition can cause serious damage to your health and lifestyle. The inflammatory process will lead to symptoms such as reduced range of motion, joint pain, and stiffness.

For this, it is for the best to educate yourself about the condition. So, keep on reading and find out how you can keep your joints healthy.

What is a joint pain?

Joint pain is the type of pain that appears at the level of a joint. This is commonly a symptom of an underlying condition, such as arthritis. However, it can also appear as a result of an injury.

The important thing here is to differentiate acute joint pain from chronic pain. This is important since it will guide you in choosing which treatment to take.

Here are some of the most common symptoms you can experience with joint pain:

  • Reduced range of motion
  • Stiffness
  • Swelling and redness
  • Sensation of warmth
  • Tenderness or pain

Types of joint pain

types of joint pain

These are different types of joint pain:

  • Arthritis joint pain – It can impair the quality of life as it restricts movement. In advanced cases, the patient presents severe inflammation and pain at the level of the affected joints.
  • Osteoarthritis joint pain – The pain commonly happens at the level of the hip or knee joint(s). It’s often accompanied by loss of function in the respective joint.
  • Gout joint pain – The accumulation of uric acid leads to pain, inflammation, and redness in the affected joint. It commonly affects the joints of the big toe.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis pain – This pain frequently affects the joints of the hands and feet. It usually leads to pain, swelling, and loss of function.
  • Post-traumatic arthritis pain – This appears as a result of an injury or fracture. It’s typically accompanied by inflammation, redness, and movement restriction in the respective joint.
  • Other types of joint pain – This includes migratory arthritis pain, bursitis pain, neuropathic arthropathy pain (Charcot disease), temporomandibular joint disorder pain, etc.

Causes of joint pain

These are some of the most common causes of joint pain:

  • Wear and tear associated with the physiological aging process
  • Infection at the level of the respective joint(s)
  • Injuries or fractures
  • Inadequate functioning of the immune system (autoimmune disorder – rheumatoid arthritis)
  • Lack of adequate lubrication at the level of the joint cartilage, bone & cartilage destruction
  • Loss of cartilage
  • Accumulation of uric acid at the level of the joint (gout)
  • Nerve ending(s) irritation
  • Intense physical effort & repeated trauma (contact sports)

How can you manage joint pain?

manage joint pain

The first and most important thing is that you obtain a correct diagnosis for your joint pain. Get your symptoms checked by a doctor, so you can get the right treatment.

These are some of the typical ways to manage pain in the joints:

Oral medications

NSAIDs

Recommended choices include aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen. These oral medications can cause liver damage, so you should only take them as prescribed.

Acetaminophen is a good alternative to those medications mentioned above. It’s good for less severe cases and has a lower risk of damaging the liver.

Opioids

This works best for severe cases, such as those with loss of function and intense pain. Take note that opioids can cause drowsiness.

Muscle relaxants

Muscle relaxants are the best choice for those who present muscle spasms and reduced range of motion.

Antidepressants

These are often prescribed for pain management and also to reduce the risk of depression.

Topical treatments

Capsaicin ointment

It can block the pain signals, giving it powerful analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. It may cause a burning or stinging sensation on the area of application.

Injections

Corticosteroid injections

These are best recommended for patients who suffer from more severe forms of arthritis. These are performed every couple of months and they provide temporary relief.

Hyaluronan injections

These are meant to replace the natural fluid of the affected joints.

Arthroscopic fluid removal

This procedure involves the removal of the excess fluid that accumulated in the affected joints. It can be performed at the same time with the corticosteroid injection.

Physical therapy

A physical therapy program can improve the range of motion of the affected joints, reducing both the intensity and frequency of the symptoms experienced. It can be used to strengthen the muscles surrounding the affected joints and also to relieve the pressure on the affected parts. It may be used in combination with heat/cold therapy, ultrasound therapy, manual therapy or swimming.

Home care measures

  • Brace/wraps for the affected joints, joint compression, and elevation are some of the ways you can manage joint pain at home. Resting the affected part can greatly help, too.
  • Avoid long periods of sitting and standing as these can cause quite a lot of damage to the joints.
  • Say goodbye to your sedentary lifestyle and engage in physical exercise on a regular basis. If you are not certain about the kind of physical exercise that is good for the joints, pay a visit to a physical therapist.
  • Avoid inflammatory foods, like refined/excessively processed foods, sugary drinks, sweets, fast food, and junk food. Opt for a diet that is mostly based on fresh fruits and vegetables, lean meat, and other healthy choices.
  • If you play contact sports, reduce the risk of joint injuries by wearing the proper equipment. You should also get adequate training, like practicing safe playing and avoiding being too aggressive.
  • Avoid eating too much red meat. This will cause uric acid to accumulate at the level of the joints, increasing the risk for gout and other inflammatory conditions.
  • Give up smoking and alcohol. These are two of the main factors which can accelerate the aging process of the joints, leaving them vulnerable to damage and inflammation.
  • Treat all infections. Untreated infections can cause harmful microorganism to travel to various joints, causing a wide range of symptoms.

Final word

Just because you are aging, this does not mean you cannot keep your joints healthy and functioning. Learn how to recognize the symptoms of inflammatory condition early on and do not hesitate to seek out the best forms of treatment. Pay attention to the prevention methods as well since these can help you enjoy healthy joints for as long as it is possible.

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