Every successful person has their “secrets” to greatness. For actor Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, the gym is his mental sanctuary. Olympic skier Nick Goepper listens to the high-energy chorus of a song before dropping into a halfpipe. And Virgin Group founder Richard Branson relieves the pressure of public speaking by imaging he’s chatting with a friend. Everyone has a different method for mental preparedness, but getting in the right mind-set guarantees a great on-camera performance. At their core, the following techniques are all about setting aside time to clear your thoughts.
Stay Focused on The Performance
Mindfulness is the act of being aware. Once you start paying attention, you might be surprised to realize how much time we spend ignoring our senses. When you allow yourself to exist in the “now,” you can approach conflict with contemplation rather than a knee-jerk reaction, and you can teach yourself to appreciate what’s in front of you for what it is.
If you are completely present while performing on camera (and not thinking about your last meeting, or the one coming up after the shoot) you’re much less likely to make mistakes. You’ll give better answers and overcome mistakes like a pro.
Meditation for Mental Clarity
Meditation is yoga for the mind. Experts say spending as little as five minutes a day stretching and relaxing the mind can deliver serious benefits. Practicing meditation can help you feel calmer on- and off-camera, as well as improve your mood, mental clarity, focus, and memory. It can also lower your blood pressure, aid your sleep, and bolster your immune system. Sounds like a win-win strategy to me.
Visualize Your Perfect Presentation
Mental imagery, or visualizing a situation over road over with a positive outcome, can have a positive impact on your performance. “Every thought alters brain chemistry,” says medical chemist and PhD David Hamilton. “The same kind of thought repeated often actually shapes brain structure and has a chemical impact around the body.” Picture yourself giving the most charismatic, passionate, persuasive performance of your life. Imagine a joke that always lands, a totally absorbed audience, a confident public speaking presentation. If you can dream it, you can do it.
You may never take up mindfulness, meditation, or visualization, but you can still be great on camera without them. Figure out your own pre-performance routine to get yourself in the mind-set for greatness.