1. Ask yourself: What is the worst thing that can possibly happen?
Thinking of the worst doesn't mean you are approaching from a negative stand point, it means that you are being proactive about defining what you are afraid of so you can focus next on what you can do to avoid the worst possible thing to happen. When you call to mind what is the worst scenario, you clarify what it is that you fear. Generating contingency plans is strategic and will result in making you feel more confident because you know you are prepared by having covered your bases.
2. Anchor your task with an action.
While preparing for something important, whether it be a big presentation, an important meeting or a big test, the nerves can feed the worst feedback loop in your head when you remain motionless just thinking about it. Instead of staring off into a wall, anchor your preparation with an action you will be doing during the actual event. If a report is giving you the jitters, prepare your report standing up and using a board to simulate how you will be on the big occasion. Pace while running your eyes on your imaginary audience, use gestures while you are composing a speech so you can direct your thoughts and actually feel the connections between your ideas, words and body language. This will make the actual event feel more organic because your body will remember the task, supporting your brain's focus on the big day.
3. Dedicate your work.
We feel fear whenever we are doing something important. Instead of running for the hills because you are so afraid to fail, dedicate your work to something higher than your ego. It can be to your parents, a sibling who helped you prepare, or to a cause so important to you that you’ll be reminded that there are bigger things at stake than your fear of being laughed at. Every time you feel tempted to give up, remind yourself of why you are doing this and it will give you the motivation you need to get to the finish line!