The anxiety can tie up so much of our mental capacity that it stops us from thinking clearly. That's why we can't recall information we know during times of great stress. But you don't have to let anxiety get in your way. Here are some simple relaxation techniques from Web MD .com to help keep your mind sharp.
  • First, a sharp mind begins with preparation. Rehearse. Do a mental run through. If you avoid thinking about a situation that makes you nervous, all you're doing is rehearsing being anxious.
  • Next, if you make a mistake, don't think, "I look stupid." Instead, do something constructive immediately. For example, if you're speaking to a group, stop and look at your notes. And don't forget to breathe deeply. Tension makes our breathing shallow and irregular.
Finally, if you have a stressful event coming up, pay attention to your habits. Don't change anything at the last minute. Eating breakfast is a great idea, but the day of your speech is not the day to start a breakfast routine.
The same is true for exercise. Instead, stick to your routine and make these changes right after the speech, exam, or interview is over.