Before an exam, an oral presentation, or an event, stress is always present. It is a motivator for some and a hindrance for others, but what really is stress? And how can you make it go away? We have brought together a couple pieces of advice for you to eliminate your stress before an event.
- Stress is positive
At first, let’s discuss the definition of stress. It is defined as a combination of responses created by facing pressure or constraints from your environment. Basically, you are at risk of threatening your normal state of being and your body becomes tense so you can react as quickly as possible. In short, stress is positive. Accept it and you will be able to deal with the increased pressure in a new way.
- Think of something else
This next tip is a supplement to the previous one. Now that you know that this reaction is positive, you can put it behind you. It is best to think of something else to get rid of the inconveniences of stress. At this point, you can think about happy moments from a vacation, the film you saw the day before, this article that you have read, and anything that will make you forget about the source of your stress. In the same manner, some memorization techniques might be helpful for you to concentrate and to think about something else.
- Do some exercise
Sitting around is not going to help you get rid of your stress. Actually, stress puts you in an excited state and that excited state can quickly transform into nervousness. Remaining stationary, without moving much can build up physical tension. You need to get rid of this tension. It is best to do a moderate amount of exercise. You don’t need to run a half-marathon or anything. Taking a 5 to 10 minute walk or jog around the house or office building should be sufficient to relax the physical tension and to help make you feel better.
It might seem childish, but laughing is one of the best ways to get rid of stress. When you laugh, your body will produce dopamine that gives you a feeling of pleasure as well as serotonin, which regulates your mood. Basically, laughing always leads to good things! Laughing is a great way to relax your muscles. In fact, only one minute of giggling is equivalent to about 45 minutes of relaxation. So relax and laugh, because it’s worth it!
- Breathing exercises
Stress weighs on our physiological state, and can lead to perspiration and an accelerated heart rate, which are signs of stress. Breathing allows you to control or at least monitor these functions. Breathing deeply allows you to receive the maximum amount of oxygen into your body and it relaxes your chest muscles that can store negative energy. For this to work, there are simple steps: Sit properly with a hand on your chest, inhale and exhale deeply, and visualize the path of your breathing into your body. Isn’t it simple? But for this technique to be the most effective, you should practice. Practice is the key!
- Get organized
Stress often develops with a work overload when you have too many tasks to complete and you are not organized. Sometimes it can be helpful to make a list of all of your tasks and then to rank them by priority. You might be able to eliminate some stress by being able to cross off tasks as you go and by seeing the list shrink. This technique lets you concentrate on the most important things as you put the least important tasks to the side, which will make your mind feel much more free. When you can simply concentrate on the most important things, you will get rid of some of your stress. This is what one might call “spring cleaning” of your To-Do list floating around in your head.
- Visualize your success
Imagine successfully completing your task to the point that it becomes a reality. If you have a public speaking event coming up, visualize the audience completely attentive and engaged in your speech. See yourself calm speaking with a poised voice and using the best words and sentences to portray your topic. It looks good right? Right away, you will feel better. Another option is that you could imagine the end of your presentation, the applause, the thanks, and all the compliments you will end up receiving after you have proven your success… This vision will surely help you decompress before you have to perform the real thing.
Stress is a natural reaction and a positive signal to your body. We hope that some of the advice here will help you master and eliminate stress in the best way.
Original article written by Hugo FITAN on our French blog
Check out Beekast ! A comprehensive web and mobile solution to promote, manage, and bring life to your events (conferences, meetings, seminars, conventions, workshops…)