Fear before the big performance

Do you ever take more conscious precautionary measures before a big event? I certainly do. I ran my first marathon in January of 2008, which meant wrapping up my training during the early winter months in Colorado. It was snowy and icy at the time and I would step cautiously or walk over the icy parts or better yet, I finished the last three weeks of training on the treadmill not wanting to risk 5 months worth of dedicated training.

Who would want to DNS because of a sprained ankle walking to the market? Not the best story. My brother used to always say skiing-if you are going to fall, fall good. I guess that could apply here as well.

The first full draft of my thesis is due this Friday. I defend in less than five weeks. I am now dreaming that my laptop falls off mountaintops and gets crashed on by waves. Today I was vacuuming and thought, “what if the battery chord gets sucked up in the vacuum and I have no way to charge my computer?” I cannot afford to lose the computer this close to game day. No way jose.


I think that these fears are normal and probably brought on by a bout of stress for performing well on gameday. Although, I’m not a psychologist, so this is only my best guess. But, a fear well intentioned. Who wants to lose out on all those hours of hard work? Who wants the added stress of injury or losing pages of a document on top of still having to make the mark and perform?

I suppose this is all part of the mental game that comes with training and racing-with anything in life. We have to put trust in ourselves and trust in all of hard work and most importantly trust in the universe that is meant to happen will happen-whatever that is.

I recently read this quote that resonated with me: It was something to the affect of- “Stress is our pressure of going against what already is.”

Anyone else get crazy thoughts before a big performance?

Do you take precautionary measures before a big race?


4 responses to “Fear before the big performance

  1. When I wrote my dissertation, I definitely freaked out about losing the files on my computer. I was constantly backing things up and printing things out. So, yeah, I think it’s very normal to be on edge before a big performance. The most useful preparations I take before any big event are to: make lists (calms and clears my mind), clear my schedule of extraneous things, and envision a successful outcome — whether that means your advisor signing your thesis at your defense or crossing the finish line at a marathon. Good luck!

  2. This post is very timely…I am on the verge of finishing and handing in an undergraduate thesis which has involved much hair pulling, stress and some crying, over recent months. Yesterday I spilled a huge cup of tea over my computer, shorted it and killed it. Everything was backed up and is fine but I just thought you should know two things- the end of a computer is not the end of the world when you back things up and secondly, no more liquids by the computer! I learned the hard way, let my misery prevent your disaster 🙂

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