Why pressure can help us and hurt us?

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I am reading the Upside of Irrationality by Dan Ariely on my Ipad.  It is more fun because it is on the Ipad, but that is not the point of this blog post.  During a week where I was feeling intense work pressure, I happened upon the chapter on hyper-motivation.  In times of intense pressure, most individuals will actual perform worst.  They are so focused on the outcome, the need to impress others and themselves that they actual psyche themselves out.

What does this mean for you and I?  Well, part of the solution is tricking your mind into believing that the pressure is really off.  Most of the time, the situation requires you to be present in the moment, not blow people away.  You may blow people away by just being yourself and engaging.  That is the internal part of this.

The other factor is that there could be externalities in your organization, which may cause you to feel over-stressed in various situations.  It could be the pay bonus is too high or a boss that says you better perform or you are out or someone below you is threatening for your position.  The solution here in my mind is to find or maintain that sense of personal cause in your work.  Your organization needs you to bring what only you can bring to the work place. YOU!

Consider this quote from Seth Godin: “A life without attachment and stress can give you the freedom to see things as they are and call them as you see them.”