Performing Under Pressure

Performing under pressure is a skill that can be learned and mastered over time. Like everything, it takes practice and perseverance to develop the mental toughness to be levelheaded and cool.

Athletes or Leaders that can soak up the heat and stay super present are able to perform to their full potential. Those that get stuck in their heads and emotions feel the stress and get blocked.

“True character is revealed in the choices a human being makes under pressure – the greater the pressure, the deeper the revelation, the truer the choice to the character’s essential nature.”  Robert McKee

Whether it’s an athletic competition, addressing an audience, or meeting a client, there are a few key things that you can do to be at your best:

1. Preparation

Practice makes permanent. Make sure you know your stuff inside and out. Only then can you let go and express yourself with confidence.

2. State of Being

Use your body language to get in the right state beforehand. Stand confidently, show the face of a winner, see it the way you want it to be in your mind’s eye, and feel how good it is to nail it. Most of all, breathe deeply and let go.

3. Presence

If you feel the nerves coming on in the midst of the performance, stay focused. Let go of your thoughts and feelings and get engaged in what you are doing. Feel your feet on the ground, be aware of your surroundings, and stay focused on the task at hand.  

Performance is about being Super Present. 

If you can be established in the here and now, the future will take care of itself. Practice being fully involved in whatever you do in every moment and notice what happens to your results.