You never do anything like that …. do you? 😉
Every one of us acts in a very specific way when we get nervous.
People who know us can tell. No matter how hard we try to come across as calm, cool, and collected, our unconscious habits give us away.
Maybe we talk too loud. Or too fast.
Maybe we pace. Tap one foot. Can’t stand still.
Or maybe we sweat. Not just a fresh sheen of perspiration, either. We’re talking visible drops of sweat.
It would be nice if we could turn off our nervous habits at will. “Oops, I’m sweating! Okay, armpits, turn off the tap.”
But we can’t. Nervous habits don’t listen.
And we live in fear that someone will notice.
What if it happens with someone you really like? What if it happens on a date? What if it happens with the person you want most to impress in the entire world?
You can imagine the frown. The revulsion. The quick end to the conversation. The horrible feeling of let-down.
But that doesn’t have to happen.
You actually DO have control over your nervous responses.
Your heart doesn’t have to start racing. You don’t have to panic. You can stay relaxed and be yourself in any encounter, no matter how gorgeous he is.
The key is what experts call presence.
Presence is one of the foundations of charisma. It’s what makes a person stand out in a crowd.
While everyone else is focusing on their phone or hurrying to get where they need to go, the present person strolls in complete confidence, taking in every nuance of his or her surroundings, open to synchronistic encounters.
When you’re present, you’re in the now. You’re not lost in your thoughts or your fears or your worries. You’re in your body. You’re grounded.
That’s important, because one of the things that happens when you get nervous is that your mind takes over. It goes into protection mode, blocking out everything but the urgent situation at hand.
Your sympathetic nervous system kicks in, preparing you to fight or flee. You become oblivious to everything but your performance … a performance that now feels like a disaster.
Here’s how to stop the cycle.