Note: I sent an email to our subscribers asking them questions about how to improve the blog and things for us to write about. Dealing with performance anxiety was one of the questions that got asked.
So how do you deal with performance anxiety?
You simply prepare, stay in the present, and control the controllable.
“Fear is simply the anticipation that something that’s going to happen soon and needs to be prepared for” – Tony Robbins.
If you are prepared you shall not fear. Preparation is key to creating confidence. Put your time in and get your reps up in whatever you do and when the time comes to perform your fear will leave and you will be ready to perform with confidence. High preparation = high confidence. Low preparation = equals anxiety. Prepare and get your work in and let the muscle memory and confidence do the work. Make the decision to choose faith over fear.
This phrase might possibly be the biggest key to success and happiness, in sports and in life. Putting your mind in the past can create disappointment, regret, and stress. During my time at BYU with my knee injury this was hard. I learned living in the past is a dangerous place to live–especially in the sports world. The future is unknown and that can create anxiety, fear, and nerves. However, I always tell myself to stay in the present with the future in mind.
There is great power in maximizing each moment and staying the present. If you make a mistake playing basketball (or any other sport), forget about it and move on to the next play. Don’t allow that mistake to determine how you play on the next play. Stay locked in the present and maximize each moment.
Control the Controllable.
As I worked with Doctor Manning throughout college he would always tell me “control the controllable.” I didn’t fully understand that at the beginning.
In basketball there are so many things you have no control over. If a player shoots a shot over one of my teammates and makes it, I have no control over that. If my teammate misses a shot, I have no control over that.
How often do we worry about things we can’t control instead of focusing on things we can control? In a game we can control our energy and effort. The more energy and effort you put forward, the better all other aspects of your game will be.
Make a list of all the things you can control during the course of a day and put all your energy and effort into those things. This not only puts things into perspective, but it helps you put your effort and energy into things that will directly impact you. It puts all of your thoughts into things that will create growth and success for you.
Everyday you can control your thoughts, happiness, the things you say, what you eat, how hard you work, how nice you are to other people, and many more things. Think about how good life would get if you only focused on the things you could control. Focusing on what you can control eliminates anxiety, fear, and many other negative emotions.
Feel free to comment on things that have helped you with anxiety performance. The more comments the more we will all learn!