Effects of Anxiety on performance

It has long been demonstrated that anxiety can impair efficient performance in a range of behavioural tasks. Research from the field of cognitive affective neuroscience suggests that goal-directed attention necessary for execution of a task is important in increased efficiency and effectiveness when aiming for peak performance (Eysneck, Santos, Calvo, & Derakshan, 2007). Evidence of top-down processes endogenous attention regulating bottom-up exogenous attentional processes (Eimer & Kiss, 2008) supports the importance of having a task, or goal in order to regulate the reduction of necessary attention capture by things that are perceived as threat-related.

Anxiety has been found to reduce inhibition of task irrelevant-stimuli (Derekshan & Eysenck, 2009; Eysneck, Santos, Calvo, & Derakshan, 2007), thereby reducing efficiency due in part to cognitive interference (Sarason, 1984) though not necessarily reducing effectiveness (See. Eysenck & Calvo, 1992). There is evidence that reduced inhibition of task-irrelevant stimuli increases visual capacity (Berggren, Derakshan, & Bloviesky, 2013). There is evidence from comparative psychology that implicates the amygdala in processing sensory stimuli, including auditory signals.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s