Kelly McGonigal is a Stanford psychologist who argues that stress may only be bad for you if you believe that it’s bad for you. A better way to think of a stressful feeling is, “This is my body’s way of rising to a challenge.” If you reframe your stress perspective, your body will believe you, and your response to the stress will be that much better.
If she’s right, think how that might help you perform better on an important test, in a presentation, or even during the big game. When you feel that sense of stress come over you, take that feeling as a good thing. It’s a sign that your body and mind are ready for action. Her 15-minute TED Talk is worth viewing, especially if you feel like stress gets in your way of performing.