It seems like everyone is talking about the 70 Million Powerball Jackpot tonight and the question I am getting constantly asked today is ‘are you nervous’?
It’s the largest Lottery jackpot for the year and I am the lucky one with the job of presenting it live. Primetime. Nationally. So here are a few tips on how I overcome nerves… and how to win Powerball.
So do I get nervous? Yes, but it’s a feeling I’ve trained myself to love. I like to think of nerves as a reminder that you’re alive and doing something important.
So here are my tips for overcoming nerves –
• Avoid stimulants. I avoid drinking coffee on days when I have to present the weather. The adrenalin and pressure of a live news broadcast coupled with caffeine can make me think and physically react too fast, which can affect the simplest things such as talking!
• Avoid high sugar foods and carb heavy meals. Low GI, and high protein, is a great approach to keeping your energy levels even and your thoughts clear. So when you have one chance to nail something, you have the correct foundation of energy to give it your best shot.
• Switch off from the outside and find your space. Osher Gunsberg (host of The Bachelor) once gave me the best tip when I started presenting. It was to walk around with some headphones on and the cord in your pocket. It doesn’t have to be plugged in to anything! It’s a polite way of avoiding people asking you too many questions, when you just want to tune out and focus on a task. If you’re clearly listening to something, people are less inclined to approach and distract you!
• Surround yourself with positivity. Perhaps listen to one of your favourite songs, that makes you feel, confident, relaxed and happy. When I started presenting the weather I used to listen to the theme song from Ugly Betty, ‘ Suddenly I see’ by KT Tunstall! I know that probably sounds funny, but it would always put me in a positive mind frame to go into studio with a smile and confidence.
• Really think about what you’re there to do. With Weather I was there to share the forecast information. When I thought about the weather facts, it made me less nervous, because I knew what I was talking about and thinking about the information took the focus off thinking about my performance.
• Try and put the situation in context. Really think about what you are doing. For me if it’s the Lotto, I think at the end of the day, all I am doing is calling out some numbers, so I focus on these numbers and then think about how fabulous it is to be helping someone get rich. I picture giving money to viewers and that eases my nerves, as it takes my focus off me and puts it on to the viewers. If you’re doing a physical task like swimming in a race, my best recommendation is to break it down and think of individual to-dos. Think about your stroke, your breathing, rather then thinking about the end and how wining might change your life or your reputation in the school yard!
• Physically shake it out. If I feel tight or tense before going into studio, I’ll do some simple stretches, shake my hands, or even run on the spot. I’ll do self awareness exercises such as – find the tension in your face, increase it, and then release it. Consciously feel the release.
• Focus on your breathing. Are you breathing deep from your belly? Not shallow breaths high in your chest. Correct your posture, relax in a chair and just think about breathing for a while. It might even distract you from thinking about the task ahead that is making you nervous.
• Another way to distract yourself from the task ahead is to play a game like Lumosity on your phone, or if speaking or presenting, go through a list of vocal exercises or warm ups.
• Prepare, prepare, prepare. Know that you know what to do and how to do it.
• Remember, people don’t really care about stuff ups; it just shows we’re human!
Good luck in tonight’s Powerball Draw! Here’s a little tip to increase your chances of winning the 70 Million – Statistically (over the past two years) the luckiest numbers are 4,5,24,26,29,32 and the numbers to avoid that come out the least are 1, 2, 11, 12, 28, 30, 40 but 11 is my lucky number so…