7 Quick (And Effective) Tips For Staying Calm Under Pressure
Stress is becoming more and more common these days and while stress is a normal part of our lives – even positive in some cases – too much stress can leave you feeling drained, overwhelmed, and panicky. Not in the same order and not always. Learning how to stay calm under pressure and stress can be beneficial.
When we’re under pressure – in communication, work, or other normal life activities – our body can go into “fight or flight” mode. This stress response is a defense mechanism that, when activated, releases hormones that are designed to protect you from any danger.
In earlier times, this response would be activated when faced with a deadly predator, but in modern times, the trigger can be more than just a deadly predator. This danger or threat can come in the form of extreme pressure such as a presentation at work, public speaking, or even defending yourself in an argument.
If you find yourself getting anxious, overwhelmed, or panicked, then your stress response will be triggered, and you’ll find yourself losing the sense of reality. To prevent this from occurring, learning how to keep calm under pressure can help.
That’s what we’ll be learning in this blog! Take a look at 7 quick tips for staying calm under pressure.
Quick Tips To Stay Calm Under Pressure
1. Take Deep Breaths
When you’re anxious and stressed, the first thing you’ll notice is how erratic your breathing is. So, the first thing you need to do to calm yourself down under pressure is to take deep breaths.
Deep breathing can help slowly calm down your stress response by ceasing the release of stress hormones. When you focus on breathing, it can also help you distract your mind from your stressor and bring your awareness back to the present moment.
Here is a quick deep breathing exercise:
Step 1: Slowly breathe in through your nose at the count of 4.
Step 2: Hold your breath for a moment.
Step 3: Slowly breathe out through your mouth at the count of 4.
Step 4: Hold your breath for a few moments and then repeat the above steps until you feel calmer.
2. Think About The Positives
I know it’s not easy to focus on the positives when you’re under pressure. When you’re stressed and under pressure, it’s normal to think about the worst-case scenario first, but this kind of thinking can only increase your panic and anxiety. In such a case, you need to learn and try to focus on anything positive.
For example, if you’re stressed about a presentation at work, then instead of thinking about how you’ll embarrass yourself, think about how amazing this opportunity is to present your skills.
3. Get Some Rest
When you’re tired – mind and body – everything can seem worse than it is. This is often the result of a lack of sleep. Stress can also make sleeping difficult, and this cycle is never-ending. So, try to get some rest to avoid feeling worse. Make your sleep a priority, no matter how under pressure you are. Try to keep a sleep routine and follow it every day.
4. Move Your Body
We’ve read about how physical exercise can be good for our mental health, but now it’s time to put this theory to the test. Exercise can be as important as sleep to keep calm under pressure. Physical workouts can release endorphins, one of the happy hormones that can help center your mind and improve your mood.
If you’re under pressure and looking for ways to stay calm no matter what, then I’d recommend you move your body. Go for a walk, do some light stretching, or practice some yoga.
5. Center Your Mind
Meditation can help rewire your brain and reduce stress over time. Meditation can be a great way to train your mind to stay calm under pressure. Keep in mind that meditation isn’t always about sitting still in a lotus position and chanting. It can be as simple as sitting calmly on your couch and doing nothing but focusing on your breathing.
You can also try guided meditation through apps like Headspace and Calm to calm yourself under pressure.
6. Express Gratitude
One of the benefits of staying calm under pressure is that it gives you time to think. When you’re under pressure, the decision and thoughts you make can be the wrong ones too. So when you learn to stay calm under pressure, you let your mind truly think. And this can be helped by practicing gratitude. When you express gratitude, you keep things in perspective and this can help calm your mind enough to think.
Studies have also found many amazing benefits of keeping a daily gratitude journal. One of the benefits of keeping a gratitude practice is that it can help lower cortisol levels.
7. Seek Out Positive People
Surrounding yourself with toxic people can only increase your stress under pressure, but when you surround yourself with nutric people or positive people, you can learn to stay positive and calm, even under pressure. Trust me, there are some people whose presence alone can increase our stress levels.
And while it’s not easy to cut off these people, it can help when you reach out to positive people who encourage you, support you and lift your spirits instead of discouraging you or draining you of your energy.
The Bottom Line
There comes a time when you find yourself floundering to stay calm under pressure, but we often forget that we can restrain our minds to lead a calmer life even when under pressure – whether in communication, work, or life.
We can’t always control the challenges we face, but we can learn how to control our response to those challenges. Learn to deal with stress under pressure healthily. These above-mentioned tips can help you integrate calm into your stressful life, especially when you’re under pressure.
Next time you feel stressed and under pressure, try some of these tips to calm yourself down. If you need help managing your stress and panic, then you can always connect with a professional.
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Keep Calm And Carry On!