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Does anybody else have the inability to function under pressure?

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    I just cannot do it.

    Anytime I have pressure on me, in any way, shape or form I just cease to properly function. It's like with A-levels, I normally coast through easily because I had no pressure and I knew what results I got depended on what universities I went to and what I could do. Now I know I need the three As, suddenly the task of easily getting the grades that have been no problem has become incredibly strenuous and I can't seem to get anything close to what I need nor revise properly and remember all I need to. I'm capitulating to the pressure and stress.


    In work, if I am told to do something that's fine, and I can and there's no problem, but if the high up manager comes in, tells me he wants something done within a certain time limit I just can't seem to function and everything falls apart on stuff that I would normally be able to do 100 times over easily.

    Does anybody else have this weird thing or any advice? It's literally making a mess of things for me and I am struggling to do well in revision and my A2s are in a week.
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    I work better under pressure and I generally seem to remember a lot more during tests - lets hope that trend continues and I haven't jinxed it now. I work better under pressure except in Maths exams. I seem to doubt myself and crumble in them but everything else pressure drives me on.

    Try and take the pressure and make it drive you on. Its probably something you have gotten in your head now that you cannot work under pressure. It is a mental thought and not that you physically cannot do it. Focus on the task and think about the pressure and beat it once and you will work a lot better.
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    I work better under pressure.
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    I can work under pressures of anything reasonably close to 101kPa, but outside of that range I'd struggle.
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    Trust me.

    When I get to penalty shootouts on FIFA.

    I start sweating and really nervous. But my adrenaline gets me through, havent lost one for a while now.
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    I think I work better under pressure - there's something about not having the time to worry or doubt your answers or actions.

    If you can't work under pressure then I think the best thing to do is rationalise the task in hand. You have to write an exam and there is plenty time for it. Just be calm, collected and relaxed about it.
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    Luckily, I thrive under pressure and all my focus goes onto the task in hand. Try and use the stress and pressure to motivate and focus you rather than let it overwhelm you.
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    Due to medical reasons, I cannot function under mental pressure.
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    I only crumble when a 'higher up' watches me do the job.
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    It depends on the 'pressure'. If it's family, then it might have some affect on me. Wouldn't you?
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    I have this problem too. It almost killed me during University (hey, I'm not even kidding - being under pressure during a serious family crisis was too much for me), but I eventually pulled through and got a First with some help from supportive staff and my doctor.

    Thing is, without so much pressure it would have been almost easy but when things got intense I would cease to function, get horribly ill, and develop an insurmountable mental block around a project.

    People without this issue cannot fathom it at all, and to be honest I barely understand it myself, but for me it seems to stem from the lethal combination of anxiety and perfectionism.

    What you can try is to see those things for what they are, and instead of trying to make your work perfect, try just doing it badly. If you really are a perfectionist it'll probably turn out really well anyway, but you will have removed some of your self inflicted pressure.

    Best of luck to the OP and anyone else reading this thread with the same issue - I believe you can do it if you try to relax your own high standards.
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    The thing you need to remember is no one is immune to feeling under pressure. Some just learn to deal with it in their own way. You just need to try things that work for you so you can keep going without buckling

    One thing I do is sit back, or take a few steps back and I concentrate on my breathing and rub the tips of my index finger and thumb together and focus on that to bring my heart rate down and focus my mind. It only works with practice and might not necessarily work with you so try and experiment with different things

    Best of luck!
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    Yeah, that used to happen. You can, however, learn to be better at it. Unfortunately, the only way of doing so that I'm aware of doing so involved throwing yourself into as many high-pressure/competitive situations as you possibly can.
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    I fair better with coursework and not exams because pressure stops me from thinking clearly and intelligently.

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Updated: October 24, 2013
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