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That Feeling When

How to Turn Anxiety Into Excitement

Jul 05, 2016 | 8 videos
Video by The Atlantic

Trying to calm down during a bout of anxiety is likely futile. Instead, try saying: “I am excited.” Because anxiety and excitement are both arousal emotions and have similar symptoms, it’s easier to get from one to the other than to completely shift gears into calmness. In this short video, staff writer Olga Khazan explores this theory with Alison Wood Brooks, a professor at Harvard Business School who has researched this phenomenon, and tests it out for herself at karaoke.

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Authors: Jeremy Raff, Olga Khazan

About This Series

Exploring the psychology behind everyday human habits and emotions