How Can I Overcome The Fear To Perform Well?


I am a sports person. Recently I was selected for the next level which is actually a good platform to perform. If I do so I will be definitely able to achieve my goal. I am feeling very tensed because I don’t want to leave this opportunity. This opportunity can fix or at the same time spoil my dreams, so I want to come out of my fear and perform well.

—Keerthi, India


Dear Keerthi,
You are right: the more you are fearful, the more you are tensed, and the poorer you will perform. So here is what you can do:

– For the BODY: after your training, stretch the body (especially the parts you are using) with yoga asanas. Hold them for some time breathing deeply into that stretch. Relax the body deeply. Best would be to do a forward bend, then a backward nend, and a sideward bend. Then lie down in Savasana (on the floor) and fully relax. See how relaxed Usain Bolt is for example. Go there!
– For the MIND: practice “measured breathing” which will relax your mind. Sitting still, inhale a calm breath for 10 counts, hold for 10, exhale. Do it 12 times. Practice every day. See how much that calms you.
– Sit down, and clearly visualize yourself performing very well. Your mind needs to see that you can do it. Then it will be easier for you when the performance happens.
– Every time you feel that anxiety or fear coming up, tense the whole body, catch the fear in that tension, then exhale forcefully and throw it out. Repeat 3 times.
– For the SOUL: pray to God or a higher power to a assist you. This will help you greatly. I have experience with it, also with sports. Pray daily, but also pray right before competition. It works.
– If you know a meditation technique, practice a little every day. Relax fully. Meditation brings you in contact with inner soul-forces, with which you will be much stronger. Try it. There is a lot of power inside of us.

Lastly: do your very best, but don’t let your happiness depend too much on the outcome. The more you say, “I absolutely need to win” the more tensed you will be. The more you are able to relax, saying, “I am able to win, and I will do my best, but whatever happens, I will be ok”, the more you will be in a good position for actually performing well.

I keep my fingers crossed for you,