Are you meeting a girl for the first time, or striking up a conversation with one at the coffee shop? Going up for a job interview, but know your nerves tend to kill you? Speaking in front of a large crowd, but you tend to choke up and die?
Being nervous or anxious can really put you at a disadvantage in these situations, especially if you are mentally unprepared for them. Feeling nervous can also make you tired more quickly — a death knell for doing anything productive. Here are my 3 personal hacks for those times where you need nerves of steel to remain calm and focused on the end goal.
1. Anti-anxiety supplements
Supplements are a quick and dirty short-term solution. See them as training wheels and they’ll get you where you need to go without relying totally on them.
They are great for whenever you’re dealing with a nervous situation that you want to kick down a peg in terms of the knots in the stomach and the worrying doubts in your mind.
I am a big fan of these supplements1, mainly because even if you don’t have crippling anxiety, they always give you an extra edge to your “cool.” They don’t take very much time to kick in either.
There are many others that have their own anxiety-reducing effects, but I find the 3 above have been the most effective for me. Note that L-theanine can be used with regularity, but phenibut and kratom must be rotated and used judiciously.
Phenibut can have the potential for withdrawl effects with daily use so be careful and use it only when you’ll really need it. Stick to the lowest recommended dosage and use it sparingly.
Combining phenibut or kratom with alcohol is generally not considered a good idea, and has not been a good idea in my experience.
Other than those caveats, these work tremendously.
Though this is more of a long-term solution and not something you can do 20 minutes before an interview or date, practically any exercise will help reduce anxiety or nervousness in general. I’m a fan of weightlifting and calisthenic exercises. Calisthenic exercises can be done virtually anywhere, such as push-ups, squats and leg lifts.
Though the neurological evidence shows that exercise can reduce levels of anxiety over time by recruiting more neurons to produce GABA2, the calming neurotransmitter, I find that cranking out a few pushups or squats will quell the onset of anxious feelings considerably.
(Fun fact: the three supplements I mentioned above happen to interact with the GABA receptors in the brain to act in a similar manner)
3. Start diving in
Admittedly, this one takes more practice in terms of undoing old habits of mentality, and it’s easier said than done. One of the best ways for beginners to learn how to dive in amidst doubt or fear is cold showering. Little things like this help you to develop “grit” that will push you to persevere in spite of little anxieties and doubts.
Anxious feelings strike down those who dread the possibility of failure. It’s something that some people are entrenched in more deeply than others; some people have a mindset that reinforces this fear of failure.
Anxiousness in the form of fear doesn’t come from the desire to succeed (which might be characterized as excitement) as much as it does from a fear of failure. Ironically, this very same fear can drive one to fail as well and it becomes the proverbial “self-fulfilling prophecy” — your fear helps you arrive to the very failure you feared.
Of course sometimes your body fears something for a very rational reason that you may be overlooking. You will need to learn the difference between a fear from insecurity versus a caution from reality.
These are just a few of my personal tricks for overcoming general fears or anxieties and keeping calm and focused. Life can often catch us off guard and being able to remain calm will help you to do the right thing in almost any situation.
If you have any similar or preferred methods, please let us know in the comments. If you have better methods, feel free to soapbox there too.