From playing sports to thinking quickly on our feet, we are doing so much better if we are relaxed. The problem is- in crucial moments and difficult situations instead of relaxing and taking advantage of our full potential, we do the exact opposite and tense up, messing up that easy golf putting shot, or not finding the right words to answer a simple question.

We are so much cooler when we are relaxed! Here are few ways we can quickly relieve tension for the optimal performance.

Focused attention. Take the pressure off and relax your mind by introducing a central fixation. Central fixation is one thing you concentrate on while doing other things. In yoga, the central fixation is our breath as we transition from one pose to the next. The result- after the practice of yoga we are relaxed, energized, and our mind is clear. While answering difficult questions you can concentrate on your breath to relieve tension. In meditation, central fixation can be a candle flame, or music- a single stimulus that allows us to go deeper into the relaxation. The more you practice meditation with central fixation the easier it will be for you to relax within few seconds.

I like to concentrate on my face to relieve tension. Under stress, the first thing we tense is our mouth. Using mouth as my central fixation, I can monitor my stress level throughout the day and relax when I need it.

Exercise. If we have few minutes to ourselves before we perform, the best way to relieve tension is intense exercise. For example, we can do 15 pushups and go!

Put your body into the power posture. Under stress, we tend to slump, or assume some other diminished body posture. Fight this trend! Sit or stand tall, expand your body, claim the space around you. It will make you feel better and in control.

Imagination. Fake it until you make it. If you let yourself think you suck at something others will quickly catch up and realize that too. Imagine only your success, thus program your brain, so others will believe in it as much as you do.