Do you find that nervousness and anxiety get in the way when you think you should be feeling excited and happy instead? If so, here’s a simple way to ease some of the discomfort and put you in a more optimistic mood.
I remember reading a study once where they found that people who ate a decadent dessert with excitement and joy actually had a spike in immune function, while those who felt anxious and guilty for eating something “bad for them” had a temporary decline in immune response.
What that tells me is that
how we think about an event has an effect on how we experience it…
all the way down to our physiological response. It’s something most of us have heard before in some form or another.
Let’s apply this little trick to the thoughts we have around nervous energy, and gain a little career wisdom…
Say you have an interview for a job you really want.
As you prepare for the interview, you find yourself feeling all the classic signs of anxiety.
Your palms get sweaty.
Your heart rate increases.
You start to feel jittery.
You may try some breathing exercises or other techniques to ease the discomfort.
You also have another helpful tool at your disposal for alleviating some of these uncomfortable feelings.
The tool is your thinking.
Here’s the thing: Some of the physiological responses we associate with nervousness and anxiety, especially when it comes to an event we WANT to happen, are actually excitement.
It’s a fact that nervousness and excitement feel the same in the body.
Think about it. If you have a vacation starting tomorrow, you will have some of the same physical sensations as before an important interview.
However, you will experience those sensations much differently in your mind. You will feel them as GOOD and desirable.
When we are feeling both nervous AND excited, the brain tends to label it all as anxiety.
That makes us want it to go away.
So next time you find yourself feeling nervous about something GOOD that’s about to happen, take some time to acknowledge that not ALL of what you are feeling is bad. See if you can determine how much of it is actually excitement. Imagine it like a pie.
See how much of what you’re feeling can be ascribed to the EXCITEMENT portion of the pie. Now use that excitement to create a more POSITIVE experience for yourself!
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And if you know a friend or neighbor who could use hearing the advice in this article or needs The Job I Love Toolkit, please forward this to them.