Prepare in advance.,
Reframe your thinking.,
Move your body to release energy.,
Count on humor.,
Try deep breathing.,
Kick perfectionism to the curb.
One of the best ways to minimize your chances of feeling anxious is through preparation. Symptoms of panic and anxiety often arise due to the unknowns of a situation, so mapping out an activity or event beforehand may help. Do as much as you can in advance to reduce panic later.For example, if you are on edge because of an upcoming job interview, figure out your route ahead of time to reduce your chances of arriving late. Practice questions with a friend or roommate. Ready your outfit the night before.;
, Sometimes nervous jitters can be easily reduced or eliminated if you just change your inner dialogue to be more positive. Words hold a lot of power over how you feel, especially if the words have a negative undertone. As you feel the onset of increased nerves and jitters, do a check in with your words.
Ask yourself, “What words are flowing through my mind that scare me?” Perhaps they are things like, “I’m going to do terrible on that test,” “She’ll never say yes if I ask her out,” or “If I try to parallel park here, I will mess up and everyone will see.” When you pay more attention to your internal dialogue, you can usually see that your thoughts are exaggerated, devastating, and down right destructive.
Any time you catch yourself with negative thoughts, take a moment to change them. Replace each negative thought with two or three positive ones. For example, “I studied hard and will ace that test tomorrow,” or “Even if I got a B on that test, I will know I did my best and it is still a great grade.”
, The jitters often feel like pent-up energy inside your body. There’s no better way to release this energy than by moving your body. This can translate to intense physical activity like running or lifting weights. However, you can also simply take your dog for a walk around the block or turn on some music and dance.If you feel jittery before an event, try shaking your hands, stretching, or jumping up and down to alleviate the edgy feeling.
, Typically, when you feel the jitters, you lock your attention on the situation that’s making you anxious. You can stop the jitters by distracting your mind from the panic-inducing event. Distraction techniques can include virtually anything.
Try striking up a conversation with someone sitting nearby. Grab a pen and paper and doodle. Or, write down a reassuring quote over and over again, such as “This too shall pass.” Read a book or listen to some music., Laughing is a great way to relax the body and mind in an anxiety-provoking situation. You might call up a buddy who has a strong sense of humor, tell a joke, or watch a funny YouTube video. A quick laugh may calm jitters and help you regain control of your nerves.
, Calm breathing is an excellent technique for managing the jitters. This exercise involves taking slow, controlled breaths to decrease the heart rate and relax the body. Taking deep breaths and purposefully slowing your body movements increases oxygenated blood flow throughout your body as it courses through all of your organs, including your brain. This increase of oxygenated blood flowing to your brain improves your thinking and your ability to think logically. Spend a few minutes focusing completely on your breath and you’ll notice the jitters have faded.Purposely make your outflow of breath slower than your intake, as this mimics the breathing you have when you are sleeping, tricking our brain and body to become more relaxed.
Breathe in through your mouth. Hold for a few counts. Then, release the air through your nose. Count as you go through each cycle. In and out, “one.” In and out, “two.” And, so on.
, Trying hard to be perfect is one of the main reasons you may experience jitters. You fear failure, rejection, or embarrassment so your body gets shaky and wound up. Tackle your perfectionist tendencies and you can stop the jitters in their tracks.You can cope with perfectionism by getting some perspective. What is it that you are so worried about? Common causes of concern are someone laughing at you or making a fool of yourself. Think about how often that has happened in the past. Then, remind yourself “It’s very unlikely that they will laugh at me.”