So you’re nervous. Great. So is everyone else! What’s important here is how we channel these nerves. It’s crucial to have some techniques stored in the back of your mind so that you can turn those nerves into something positive and not allow them to waste all your energy. If you'd like to learn some of these techniques then read on!
Let’s start by highlighting that nerves prior to an assessment of any sort are completely normal. It’s ok. It means that you care and it means that you are taking it seriously.
So you’re nervous. Great. So is everyone else!
What’s important here is how we channel these nerves. It’s crucial to have some techniques stored in the back of your mind so that you can turn those nerves into something positive and not allow them to waste all your energy.
Think of this like a tool belt. You’ve got all these cool mindset tools you can draw from. You just pull one out of your tool belt on the day, use it and then put it back until you need it again.
Let’s stock up your tool belt with some awesome new tools to help calm your nerves prior to a PFA.
Give yourself no option but to do your absolute best. If you focus on ‘what happens if I fail’ then you’re channeling your nerves into a form of negative energy. Redirect those thoughts into something positive like ‘I can’t wait to pass this test’.
Ensure you eat a good meal the night before and the morning of your PFA. Don’t try and eat anything new or fancy because you’ve been told by someone else that it will help. If you haven’t tried that meal on your body to see how it’s going to react, then the morning of your PFA isn’t the time. Fuel your body with good food so that you can feel comfortable knowing you’ve given it energy to perform.
PUT THE PHONE AWAY
It’s easy to get locked into your phone whilst you’re waiting for the PFA to start. This will actually increase your anxieties because you’ll be flicking through pictures, making decisions and your brain will go into overdrive. Put the phone away, look up, take in some deep breaths and visualise yourself passing.
WHAT MOTIVATES YOU
Remind yourself what motivates you. Why are you here? What is your dream job role that you can’t wait to do? Remember your ‘why’ and let that calm your nerves in knowing that you’re one step closer to achieving that ‘why’.
TALK TO PEOPLE
Everyone that’s standing around you is going through the same thing, feeling the same way and worried about the same outcome. Talk to them. Get to know them. Ease each other's minds. It will help to chat to someone about how you're feeling and what you’re excited about as opposed to going round in circles in your own mind! You may even meet someone enlisting on the same day as you or you may even come across each other later on in your careers!
It’s not a fashion parade. Don’t try and wear the latest, greatest and cutest fashion from the local active wear retailer. Wear what you’re comfortable in. If your shorts are going to ride up your bum and make you feel self conscious, wear something else. If you prefer a shirt instead of a singlet then wear the shirt. If you have a favourite pair of training undies, wear them. Worrying about your clothing is the last thing you want to be stressing about so choose comfort over fashion.
We get it. Coffee is everything. Except before a PFA. Save your morning coffee for AFTER the PFA. You don't want it gurgling around in your stomach and making you feel sick before it even starts. You don’t want to be stressed out about whether you’ll vomit because of a coffee. So just drink water and save the celebratory coffee for later.
Disassociate the feelings you’re having as ‘nervous’ and give them a new name. Reframe those feelings as ‘excitement’. Tell yourself that you’re ‘SO EXCITED’ instead of so nervous and you’ll be surprised at how you can convince your mindset that you’re not nervous anymore.
You won’t always have music available to you whilst training in the Military. However you do have it now, so choose your favourite ‘pump up’ song and play it in the car prior to your arrival. You can even take 3 minutes to just sit in the car prior to your PFA and really get yourself amped up and excited. Check out our TBG Ultimate Playlist on Spotify for some suggestions.
Be confident in the training that you’ve done. Know that if you’ve trained enough and trained properly that this will carry you across the line. Back yourself and know that you’re awesome, you’ve trained hard and that you've got this.
USE YOUR ENVIRONMENT
Look around you, look where you are. You’re at your PFA. It’s exciting and it’s the one thing between where you are right now and you enlisting. Many applicants don’t even make it to this point in the process. Feel privileged that you are there and be excited by this opportunity. Use that excitement, honour and nervous energy to push you to your limits. Embrace it!
Sounds simple right? So many people forget to breathe. Breathing is so powerful if you use it properly. Take 1 minute to sit by yourself and take some deep breaths. Calm that heart rate down so that you can think clearly.
HOW BAD DO YOU WANT IT
In our podcast ‘Becoming Badass’ we always talk about the concept of remembering ‘how bad you want it’. This statement has never been more relevant than at a PFA. How bad do you want it?
Take a second to remind yourself ‘Yeah… I want this bad. More than anything I’ve ever wanted in my entire life’ and then go for it.
If you would like some extra guidance in calming your nerves for the PFA, be sure to jump in our Face Book forum ADF Recruit Fitness where you can talk to other applicants who are all going through the same thing!
Michael and Carly both have walked the path you are about to take and are commited to help you get started with your training for a successful enlistment with free tips and articles.