There’s no need to hide your stress. Recent studies say that showing signs of anxiety may improve the reaction you get from others.

People often touch their faces and hair, twist their mouths, lick their lips, and bite their nails when nervous. Jamie Whitehouse, a researcher at Nottingham Trent University, asked 133 participants to watch fake interviews that showed these behaviors. As expected, viewers were able to tell how anxious the interviewees were, and this may be because of those obvious movements. However, depending on the situation, people’s reactions to our nonverbal signs may change. When we frown at work, coworkers may mistakenly assume we’re angry without ever explaining the reason why we are stressed.

We can stop worrying about our anxiety if we learn to accept it. Others would respond positively if we did, which is more than we could have possibly imagined.