Cognitive performance anxiety (CPA) negatively affects individuals in their performance even if they have the ability and skills to complete the tasks. CPA is a phenomena that can lead to mental block, test anxiety, or stage fright. It particularly refers to the anxiety that individuals experience before doing, or while doing an important task, which more often than not, compromises the quality of their performance.
Cognitive Performance Anxiety in Relation to Stress
Cognitive performance anxiety is felt by individuals who feel stressed about the possibility of being negatively judged by others, whether the assessment exercise is for real or just imaginary. While CPA commonly causes stress to students who worry about the results of their school tests and their grades, CPA stress also happens to employees who worry about getting a negative evaluation from a higher-up
CPA stress that comes in moderate levels can actually push or motivate a person to improve his or her cognitive performance. However, once stress due to CPA reaches high levels, it can be detrimental to an individual’s health, because a stressed out condition can make a person feel constantly tired and depressed.
Harmful Effects of High Levels of CPA
People who feel overly anxious instinctively inspect their surroundings for any signs of potential threats. As the stress level increases, they find it more difficult to shake off negative thoughts. As the unwanted, and disturbing thoughts persist in the mind of a person, the constant high levels of stress can lead to the development of CPA as an anxiety disorder.
Anxiety as a Disorder : Alteration of Neurobiological System
According to studies, fear is activated in the amygdala, an important part of the brain’s network of nerves, which influences the levels of serotonin being produced.
Serotonin is a compound that serves as a neurotransmitter and has the ability to intensify sympathetic nervous activity. An increase of negative activity in turn, releases an additional hormone called norepinephrine that is found dominant in the ends of sympathetic nerve fibers.
The increased production of both serotonin and norepinephrine yields feelings of fear, promoting hyperactivity in the hypothalamus and amygdala. Hyperactivity then leads to the release of corticotropic hormone (CRH) like cortisol. Once CRH levels are high, both body and mind will experience feelings of anxiety, and at worst could lead to depression.
Cortisol is a major stress hormone because it serves as the human body’s alarm system in regulating the circadian system. The latter refers to the internal body clock responsible for managing and determining the rhythm of the body functions, including sleep and wake phases.
Perpetuation of high levels of cortisol and other corticotropic hormones can cause neurobiological alteration that changes anxiety into depression, a mental health condition that needs to have some form of relief.
Natural Remedies for Relief of Anxiety and Depression
Having anxiety or depression can be very draining as it burdens the neurobiological systems with worries that can hinder you from having a pleasant and enjoyable life. Nonetheless, it is helpful to know of natural remedies that provide relief and subsequently allow the body to feel relaxed. Such natural remedies include: :
- Green tea
- Regular exercise or staying active at the least;
- Meditation as it trains your mind to focus on pleasant and serene thoughts;
- Eating types of food rich in Vitamin B12 and Omega-3 Fatty Acids as both nutrients help the brain work well;
- Light therapy which utilizes special lamps that produce synthetic sunlight,that triggers the brain to produce chemicals countering the effects of high CHR levels and make the mind feel less anxious and tired
If despite these natural remedies you still feel you need to find ways on how to stop feeling tired, consider taking energy drops as supplements. Energy drops formulated with the right blend of potent natural ingredients like cannabis oil, ashwagandha, guarana and valerian roots can have a mind boosting effect. Although they do not require a medical prescription, it would be best to consult with your doctor as there could be other underlying conditions causing your anxiety. Moreover, they are recommended for use only by individuals aged 18 or older.