Performance 3 min read

The Formula For “Holy Sh*t, Look What I’ve Done” That Beats Performance Anxiety

by Steven Kotler February 19, 2019

Grit has become a buzzword in the past few years. Scientific research has shown that it’s an absolutely necessary component for a life full of meaning and success.

But when many of us come upon a big challenge, instead of feeling strong and empowered, we often suffer from performance anxiety.

That’s because most people don’t fully understand grit. Most people think grit only means perseverance. And because of that, the common wisdom about achieving the trait has been all wrong. It’s been about pushing through the performance anxiety.

Yet you can turn your anxiety into excitement by layering on the 7 other important components of grit. And grit, combined with one other factor, is the No. 1 predictor of success.

In this video, Pulitzer Prize-nominated and The New York Times bestselling author Steven Kotler shares with Vishen exactly how grit is going to “bridge the gap between your inferior self and the person you really want to be.”

What Is Grit?


According to Steven Kotler, our modern perception of grit is all wrong.

People believe that grit is synonymous with perseverance. If you have grit, you have the ability to endure.

But grit is so much more than that.

In fact, Steven says grit is comprised of 7 different components. And we can’t cultivate true grit until we understand its complexity and power.

The more grit we have, the better we can combat performance anxiety and turn that anxiety into our secret weapon.

What is performance anxiety?

Performance anxiety is the fear we experience when we’re faced with a challenge in which we need to perform.

Anxiety itself can take on a lot of different shapes and sizes. But performance anxiety, in particular, is a form of anxiety tied to an external challenge.

Many of us experience this type of fear. And it’s only natural: we want to do well, we want to succeed, we want to rise to the challenge.

But what happens with this type of anxiety begins to take hold?

Performance anxiety may start out as enthusiasm for success and a desire to succeed. But it can quickly unravel our ambitions and keep us from taking action.

This type of anxiety can root us in place and discourage us from trying new things. And that’s when it effects become dangerous.

So, how do we deal with performance anxiety?

By using grit to turn it into our motivation to succeed.

The Formula That Turns Fear Into Success


If you really want a life of meaning, you have to learn how to flow through those challenges. —Steven Kotler

So, how do we turn performance anxiety into a recipe for success? With grit.

But grit alone isn’t enough. In his Mindvalley Program, The Habit of Ferocity, Steven Kotler explains how grit coupled with a strong learning strategy is what will ultimately drive you to conquer all the challenges of your life.

Watch the video above to hear Steven’s thoughts on grit and how it can help you turn performance anxiety into your secret weapon for success.


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by Steven Kotler
Steven Kotler is one of the leading peak performance experts on the planet. He is the New York Times bestselling and Pulitzer Prize-nominated author of books like Stealing Fire and The Rise of Superman. His clients include Google, Cisco, Deloitte, world-class athletes, and the US Special Forces. He's committed his life to understanding and mastering the state of heightened clarity, focus, and performance — which many now know as "flow." In his Mindvalley Quest, Steven teaches how to master the habit of "ferocity" based on the latest findings in neuroscience, psychology, and physiology: a behavioral formula used by many of the world's peak performers to rise above insurmountable obstacles and achieve impossible feats.

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