How to Stay Calm Under Pressure in Difficult Meetings (STRESS SHIELD!)

How to Stay Calm Under Pressure in Difficult Meetings (STRESS SHIELD!)

Hey everybody. Many of us have got meetings or people that get stressful and maybe that’s because they’re difficult, maybe it’s because they get confrontational, maybe it’s even aggressive, I don’t know, but anyway at the end of this video you’ll have a great process for remaining calm in these situations. It’s what I call the STRESS SHIELD and it’s something that comes from the field of neuro linguistic programming or NLP, and it enables you to be in a difficult place, and stress less, and stay relaxed, and remain composed, so that you can respond well. Now stay around to the end, because as well as presenting the process I also want to talk about what’s BEYOND the process, which may be even more powerful for you, and also I’ve got a FREEBIE!! My name’s Steve and I’m a professional coaching trainer, I work mostly with professional people on the topic of succeeding, but from a happier and more grounded place, so for the best ideas and practices in that theme, please subscribe to the channel and please also hit that notifications bell so you’ll be informed when new content arrives. I developed the stress shield several years ago by adapting recognizable patterns in NLP or neuro linguistic programming. I am an advanced master practitioner and trainer of neuro linguistic programming and it’s still something that I use very much in my work. Even though this channel isn’t specifically about NLP, those processes do show up in my work and I’ve used them to transformational effect with many clients over the years. Before I present the process, let me get a couple of things out of the way. First of all I am going to present the process rather than facilitate it as if I was facilitating you one-on-one. If I was facilitating you one-on-one, we’d take a lot more time over this, we’d spend more time doing the steps and checking the steps, whereas in this video I’m not going to do that, I’m just going to tell you what the steps are. You can facilitate yourself through this but if you do so I would urge you to start at the shallow end rather than the deep end. In other words pick something that isn’t too bothersome to you, to make sure that that you feel right with this process and that it’s something that will work for you. Only then gradually work up to the tougher situations. The final thing I want to say is that the idea of this is to practice it AHEAD of time, so that it can become a resource IN time. the first stage of the process is to practice accessing a feeling of being relaxed and alert, and the way I would get people to do this is ask you to close your eyes and think of a time where you were relaxed and alert. Some good examples of this might be things like being on a sightseeing day where you are relaxed, it is a relaxing day, but you are attentive, you’re paying attention to what’s going on around you’re taking in what’s going around you, you’re watching, you’re listening, you’re interested, and I want you to put yourself back inside that experience, so you close your eyes, go back to it, put yourself back inside it, see what you saw then, hear what you heard then, feel what you felt then, and make sure it’s vivid. Make sure for example that what you’re seeing isn’t just some small picture in front of you, but it’s all around you, and it’s vividly colorful, and is three-dimensional, and is moving, and make sure that the things that you’re hearing are clear, that you’re hearing them with a clarity that you heard them then, and that the feelings are as clear in your body as they were then. This is where we would spend a little time just making sure that it’s vivid, make sure that you’re getting right back into it. Step two is to repeat that a couple of times so that you find yourself easier and easier to be able to get into it, and like I said make sure it is vivid, make sure you’re noticing details, actually look around that the visuals and see little details that are there to help you get fully back into it, and every time it feels like the feeling is gonna get its most vivid, then just say to yourself in your head, “Relaxed and alert, relaxed and alert,” so run through this a few times, this is what we would do, when you get to the peaks, take relaxed and alert. By the way let me know in the comments which situations you find stressful and how you’ve learned to cope with them. I’d love to turn this into a conversation, so if you’re okay with sharing that, then I’d love to read your comment and I’ll reply to as many of them as I can. So the first stage of this process was to practice accessing a feeling, and what I want to get people to naturally access that feeling, to do the whole relaxed and alert thing, get into it, get vivid with it, and I’m going to use some hypnotic phenomena. So I would want you to imagine that this feeling, the center of it has some location your body, it may be spreading out but it will have a center somewhere in your body. I want you put your attention on where that center is, the other thing I would want you to notice is how that feeling is spinning, you either perceive it as spinning forward like this, backwards like this, round clockwise round anti-clockwise. Don’t overthink this! Whatever feels instinctively correct, go with. If you like just try match it with each of these spin directions, which one feels correct is the one to go with, and the other thing I want you to do is to give this feeling of color. Again don’t overthink this ,don’t overanalyze, it’s not an intellectual process, just whatever current color comes to mind when you’re thinking about this feeling, when you’re putting your attention on this feeling, that’s the color to go with. Now keep tuned in to this feeling by keeping noticing the location of the feeling, it’s spin, its color, keep your attention on those things, but come out of the past experience and put yourself in the present, experience wherever you are, holding that feeling, remember to keep noticing its location, keep noticinng its spin, keep noticing its color, and use that as a way of holding onto the feeling whilst you come in to the present, AND imagine that there is a room sized perspex screen in front of you. Now keeping your attention on that feeling and holding that perspex screen I now want you to project yourself into the future into the place where you’ll be having this difficult meeting, or meeting with these difficult people. This screen is fully transparent so you can perfectly see everything that’s on going on in the room, you can perfectly hear everything that’s being said in the room, it’s just that they are on the other side of the screen to you. Step five is to continue holding that feeling by noticing where it is in your body, how its spinning, what color it is, and to keep the perspex screen in place but now to mentally rehearse being in that meeting and every time somebody says something confrontational or aggressive, I want you to imagine that it’s like a paint ball that flies towards the perspex screen and splats on the screen, and just slides down, something hurtful, splats on the screen and slides down, you can see what’s going on, you can hear what people are saying, you can learn from what people are saying, you can pay attention, it’s just that these things cannot get to you. And now I want you to mentally rehearse remaining composed and saying whatever you’re gonna say from a calm place, by keeping steady, taking breaths, taking pauses if you need to, but just responding from a composed place. Now if you’ve never experienced any NLP before that might have been new to you, it might have even been a bit weird to be giving feelings colors and spin directions and things like this, but these are just hypnotic phenomena that we use to be able to transpose feelings from one place to another and to use them as resources in future situations, but while processes and techniques like that can be very useful in building new resources for you, and useful for changing your feelings in the moment, I do see them as somewhat tactical because I think what’s more powerful than that is to be BEYOND the process. You know, I often say that, if we take motivation as an example, what’s even better than having a motivation technique is not even needing one! And so I want to talk in my next week’s video about something which is BEYOND techniques, a way of being that is beyond technique, which can also be useful in situations like this, so do remember to subscribe to the channel and click that notifications bell so you can see when that follow-up video arrives. I mentioned a free gift! If you go down to the pinned comment below this video you’ll see a link to access a free guide to managing stress in the moment and making better decisions under pressure. I would love for you to help yourself for that free guide. Just go down to the pinned comment, click the link and you’ll get access to it. Besides that I hope you enjoyed the video please like the video it helps other people see and don’t forget to subscribe to the channel.

52 Replies to “How to Stay Calm Under Pressure in Difficult Meetings (STRESS SHIELD!)”


  2. This is a very timely topic- stress kills and what a great way to learn how to manage it. Thanks for sharing!!

  3. I usually meditate on the ocean to calm down when under pressure..I do the same when the doc measures my blood pressure:-)

  4. Relax and alert! Love that.
    I call it STOP and pauze, then observe.
    Being more mindful and doing some very simple mindful exercises for just 1-3minutes is what I do with my clients and it has terrific results.
    Thanks boss

  5. I write. Just today I wrote about how I envisioned a meeting going and it went as I expected it to!

  6. Thank you for sharing the video, Steve. Counting my breaths (quick meditation) has helped me overcome difficult meetings.

  7. Steve, it is hard for me to stay calm around people especially when I need to speak, and yes, its all in our heads, by visualizing yourself being come and confident, definitely helps!

  8. I’m thankful to say I haven’t had stress in a long time but I do find myself getting overwhelmed easily. I used to get stressed a lot in my last job and the way I coped is by just stepping away from my computer and going outside for a walk. Great video!

  9. Definitely a very helpful video. It's so difficult to stay calm now a days with so much pressure. Thanks for these tips.

  10. I handle stress by focusing on positive & happy things in my life…. and MOVING! Exercising or going for a walk or even cleaning my house. Getting up and going forward helps me elevate the stress in my life.

  11. Great video Stephen! I've never heard of this stress shield technique. I like it!! πŸ™‚ Takes quite a bit of focus and mindfulness…..right up my alley though! I have a lot of mindful habits for stress management. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure…. just to be a tad bit cliche. πŸ™‚ Take care!

  12. Great video! Staying calm is soooo important. When emotions escalate it’s so difficult to have a productive conversation.

  13. Great information! I’m on conference calls all day long in my 9-5 and this will be very helpfulπŸ‘πŸΎπŸ‘πŸΎπŸ‘πŸΎπŸ‘πŸΎ

  14. How it’s spinning, and what color it is are completely new to me. Yes, it seems weird, but I will have to try it. Thanks for the information!

  15. I can relate to being under pressure in meetings, but had not heard of the stress shield until now! Thanks for sharing this πŸ™‚

  16. I love Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) but have never heard of the Stress Shield. This was so helpful, thanks so much! #newsubscriber 😊

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