I have this big meeting coming up about my work, and I’m freaking out



The Context

How do you trust that you can create value under any conditions? It’s the type of confidence that isn’t as hard to find as you might think. All it takes is a little reflection and lot of practice. It’s funny, we always find a way to make things a story about how we’ve never done something before. But maybe that’s just fear, trying to convince us that reality is impinging more on us than we can handle.

The Tool

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PRIMING — Reminding yourself of your accumulated track record to build faith in your creative capabilities

Imagine you’re waiting in the lobby of an office building, about to go into a meeting or interview. Before walking in that door, you take a few minutes to remind yourself of your accumulated track record. Rather than focusing on your memorable successes and failures, embrace the whole of your entire journey, personal and professional, good, bad, and everything in between. Soak in the gratitude for the ground taken. Saturate your consciousness with where you’ve been and who you’ve become along the way, and you will quickly prove to yourself that you have so much experience, you can’t fail. Not by your personal definition of what constitutes success. And by the time that meeting starts, there will be zero guilt about what you have done, or not done, to get where you are.

When the sizzling world of anxiety first became a daily struggle for me, one of the tricks my therapist taught me was to announce the following mantra to myself. You can handle this attack because you’re not getting anxious about your anxiety. You can handle this attack because you’re not getting anxious about your anxiety. Who knew such a simple reminder would have such a calming effect? And while it didn’t eliminate my feelings of fear completely, it did help them dissipate faster. Not to mention, helped my body prove to my brain that the two could trust each other. That’s the power of positive and prolific perspective priming. We send a message to the mind that everything we want to create is already inside of ourselves, and if we have faith that the forest to provide, it will deliver. Not always in the way we want it to, but it will deliver nonetheless.

The Rest

Remember, if we believe that we are a welcome presence who creates value, then that’s exactly how people will treat us. Take a breath and tell yourself that you’re okay. The world has no use for your shame. What if nobody was standing in the way of your ability to create value?

The Benefits

Build an arsenal of faith in your own talents
Define success in a way where you win no matter what
Dissipate your fears quickly before a major performance
Walk into situations confident than you’re a welcomed presence who creates value

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