Nervous? Try anxious reappraisal

Do you get nervous before tests, big games, or other high-stakes situations? Your instinct might be to tell yourself to calm down. But Alison Wood Brooks, a professor at Harvard Business School, recommends you do the opposite: Tell yourself how excited you are about what’s currently stressing you out. It’s called “anxious reappraisal,” and it’s more than just empty self-talk—there’s science to back it up. Author Dan Pink explains the technique in this short (2:18) video.

For more on this topic, Stanford psychologist Kelly McGonigal makes a similar recommendation in her TED Talk, “How to make stress your friend.”