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Are you ‘clutch’ or ‘choke’?

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in Leaders & Managers

Two business books explore how good you are when the heat is on or why you may crack under pressure.

Clutch, by Paul Sullivan and published by Portfolio, examines what makes a leader perform well under stress. It’s not luck, but “the ability to do what you can do normally under immense pressure.”

The five key traits of clutch performers are: focus, discipline, adaptability, presence and desire to win.

Choke, by University of Chicago psychologist Sian Beilock and published by Free Press, takes a look at the losers. Choking is not bad luck but an uncharacteristically lame response to enormous stress.

Beilock offers tips to keeping your cool, including practicing under pressure and “pausing the choke” by taking a minute to shake it off.

— Adapted from “Business Books,” Andrea Sachs, Time.

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