Have you ever flubbed something you normally do effortlessly when you are doing it under a lot of pressure?
Do you lose your nerve when the performance stakes are high?
Whether it is giving a briefing to a CEO or the board, pitching a great idea to investors, handling a crisis situation, or having to play your best at the Super Bowl, performing our best under high pressure is challenging.
In their new book, “Performing Under Pressure” psychologist and pioneer in the study of pressure management Henrie Weisinger, and performance coach J.P. Pawliw-Fry summarize decades of research on how people experience pressure.
Some key findings they present about our performance under pressure:
- When under pressure, most people perform below their capability
- Pressure actually downgrades our ability to perform successfully
- In today’s society, we are faced with more and more uncertainty and fear—performance pressure is prevalent and unavoidable.
- We need more strategies and “pressure-management “ tools to counteract these realities. They present 22 “pressure solutions” to help redirect how we think about pressure and to use in pressure situations.
I won’t summarize all of these solutions in this post—but suggest you read or scan this book. The research the authors cite coupled with their advice is worth a look.