43 | Nervous energy is advantageous!

Hi, I’m Yath! Thank you for being here. You are receiving this because you signed up to my weekly newsletter on self-growth and mindful productivity.

Hey friends,

Before we get started, I think it’s about time you guys got to know me better, so to celebrate hitting 1000 subscribers on YouTube, I did a cheeky Q&A — link at the end of this newsletter. Right, let’s get to this week’s article.


For those that don’t know, I’m pretty introverted and I get nervous in a lot of situations others would feel completely fine. Earlier this week, I listened to a podcast episode where KharmaMedic also eluded to a similar trait. So, this week I want to share a few thoughts on the technique I use to leverage my nervous energy into something advantageous.

This is fake it til you make it but how to actually go about it.

This is also the topic of the most common email/message I get on my socials that often goes something like, “I want to do X but I’m not confident/ready for it, can you give me some advice.” Well, here are my thoughts that I hope will help at least one other person. You may also want to couple this with last week’s piece.

So, to explain why your nervousness could actually be the most positive thing in your arsenal, we need to understand science. Medically put, nervousness is an arousal energy state. In such a way, other emotions such as happiness or excitement are also arousal states. A lot of these emotions come from the same biochemical arousal state, just manifested differently. Equipped with this information there’s a lot of we can do to leverage this arousal state.

Essentially, feeling something is heaps better than feeling nothing at all. When you feel anxious/nervous, you’re feeling aroused, you can mentally challenge yourself to convert this into excitement/confidence. Think of it as a factory machine, the input is nervous energy and the output is a more positive feeling.

Mark Manson, one of my favourite writers, explains in his book The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*CK how we should use affirmations to do this. He explains there are two types of affirmations, those that are more positive in nature, e.g. “I’m grateful for this opportunity”, and those simply masking negativity, e.g. “try to hide it”.

So that’s exactly what I do. When I feel nervous I choose to acknowledge this and channel some positive affirmations to convert this feeling into something more confident and energetic. I tell myself a cocktail of things but my personal favourite is “let’s go champ”, which internally looks more like:

Let’s goooooooo champ followed by a dozen rocket-ship emojis.

So, give it a go, the next time you feel nervous about a task, project, or even a conversation, have some internal dialogue to get yourself pumped and convert the arousal state into a more positive feeling. The more I’ve done this, the more I’ve felt great about these moments because I know I can convert my nervous energy into something awesome!


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This Week’s Quote 🎯

“When you decide to do something, remind yourself that it is commitment not motivation that matters.” — Steve Peters (The Chimp Paradox)

This Week’s Recommendation 🚀

Book 📚 — The Courage To Be Disliked

Written by Fumitake Koga and Ichiro Kishimi, this is a book I had to revisit my notes on earlier today. As the authors describe it, the book is about how to free yourself, change your life, and achieve real happiness. It transformed the way I felt about being judged, critiqued, or laughed at and it nicely fits with this week’s topic on nervous energy.

This Week on YouTube 🎥

We recently hit 1000 subscribers on the channel, to celebrate here’s me answering some of your questions:

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That’s all for this week — be safe, be happy!

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