Every player has a time when frustration has taken it's toll. They start to miss probe production. Their micro slowly devolves in a goopy mess of derp.
A big part of fighting Tilt is knowing when it's hit you. Endorphines and adrenaline do NOT help your game and strong emotions cause your brain to produce them. They will slow your play and your decision making will suffer.
Signs of Tilt:
1.Tension in your shoulders-Watch for your upper back to tense. Particularly pain between the shoulder blades and in the neck. A light pressure in the temples could also indicate stress developing.
2.Fingers staying more attached to specific keys-When you're under stress you are less likely to build certain units which require your fingers to move to unusual parts of the keyboard.
3.Missed opportunities-Reviewing your replay you begin to see you've completely failed to tap a particular resource. Maybe you could have gotten away with building an Archon when you were out of energy. Maybe you dropped probe production altogether.
4.Adrenaline rush- You begin feeling anxiety about your next action and make riskier and riskier decisions, hoping to end things quickly. The best players play patiently.
5.Fighting yourself rather than fighting your opponent-You're finding your units won't respond to your commands as cleanly or effectively. You're mis-clicking constantly.
6.Fear of the next match-You are afraid to face the situations that caused you to lose. You feel anxiety at the thought of facing those situations.
If you're feeling any or all of these things, you're on Tilt. Recognizing it will save you a bigger fall down the ladder. You can remain on Tilt for days or weeks if you don't take steps to mitigate it.
You DO NOT want to 'Amp yourself up' before a game of Starcraft 2. Lay off the energy drinks. Don't play angry music with the game (No Slipknot, no Seether).
Methods for removing Tilt and letting you get on with the game.
1.Write out your worries.-I realize this sounds goofy but a recent study proved that writing about your fears and anxieties can massively improve performance. If you want to read the story, here is a link.
Surprisingly enough, this really does work. Writing out your fears about the game as well as a plan to improve can work wonders for your play.
In particular it's good to focus on the particular moments in as great an emotional detail as possible where you felt the worst worry. The deeper you detail your feelings the more effectively you will control them.
2.Take a cold shower- For calming the mind, cold works wonderfully. Also, eating soft ice will create feelings of general calm.
3.Study The Game- Stop playing the game for a bit and log into the Team Liquid streams section. Watch other players play. Watch old Day9's. Go spend an hour on Husky Starcraft's Youtube Channel. Head over to BattleVet
Feeling like you have new knowledge of the game will keep you from sliding into permanent tilt. Tilt, in large part, is a feeling that you're not going to improve. Having new information and something to grow you as a player outside of the game itself can help keep you from those thoughts. It isn't just the knowledge itself that will improve your play but the emotional boost you get from feeling that you have absorbed something important which will make you a better player.
4.Self Hypnosis-The one section I had a request for expansion on.
Self Hypnosis is a powerful method of pulling yourself off of Tilt. It requires a modicum of self control to achieve but you can begin to feel very strong and to allow losses to slide off your back while wins make you feel like a shark in a Sherman tank.
Begin with a quiet space in your home and something that you can focus on. This can be as simple as a candle light. Begin to look at it closely and examine it more and more, attempting to find new details in the light. This will, given a bit of time, calm your mind. Your muscles will unkink, your adrenaline will work itself out of your system, and you will begin to feel a modicum of peace. Once you are in this place, begin to examine your fears and worries about the game at a distance. Look for underlying reasons for this fear.
All too often you'll find fears of failure, public shame, and other such things underlying your worries about pressing on to the next match.
A second method involves visualization which works better for people who are more emotional thinkers. Begin inside your mind with a blank space. Empty. When you think of the very idea of emptiness, go to that place. Force yourself there however long it takes until it settles in. You may have to do this over the course of a few days. If you do it for 5 minutes a day, you will find it steadily easier to go to that place.
From that alone your game will improve, however if you use it for self introspection it will be even greater. Pick an object in your home. A marble or other small thing you can hold in your hands is good. Imagine your emotions as an orange liquid filling your body right down to the tips of your toes.
Now, take that liquid and within yourself make it flow into the object. Let the object become an endless black hole, draining away the intensity and fear and anger. Empty yourself completely until there is just you, a glass vessel in the shape of a person, ready to be filled with whatever thoughts you deem proper. If those are positive thoughts, your game will be much stronger.
Each time you hold that object from then on, imagine that orange liquid draining away and sit there quiet and still until it is completely gone.
5.Make a plan- Get together a set of ideas for your next game and execute those until you have them down pat. You may have to do a build order 15 times before you work out the proper timings and have a complete idea of what to do. That's FINE. Do it anyway. This is essential to getting off of Tilt. You have to feel like 'YOU' are in control. Not the match-making system and not your opponent.
If you are still having issues with Tilt at this point after trying these things, you will probably need to walk away from the game for a while. Not a solution I like because I ascribe to Day9's belief that a person must keep walking over dead bodies if you're going to grow as a player, but it is a solution.