Gloucester scrum-half Jimmy Cowan has urged his team-mates to thrive on the pressure of their pivotal upcoming fixtures in the Aviva Premiership.
The Cherry and Whites, who won 12-6 against basement side Worcester last week, currently lie in ninth position ahead of taking on London Irish.
And Cowan believes not letting their disappointing league position affect the team in a negative way is critical to them climbing up the standings.
"I'm a player who embraces the pressure," the former All Black told the Gloucester Citizen.
"You've got to embrace it, because it is part and parcel of the game, part of being a professional rugby player.
"There's going to be a lot bigger games along the way, I can assure them.
"No doubt some of the boys made mistakes last week as I did, but you've got to learn from it, and try not to do it again. It's about learning and pressure is a part of it.
"I enjoy the big occasions. I knew the importance of the Worcester game; I knew there was pressure there to perform.
"But when you get to a stage like that, you've got to worry about your own performance rather than worrying about the outcome.
"You concentrate on your role, what you bring to the team structure, and if you get all 23 players doing that the outcome will take care of itself.
"Worcester was a starting point, a win at home. And hopefully we can go to London Irish on Sunday and build on this."
The 31-year-old is adamant though that a good win could set Gloucester on their way to gaining more respect from teams they meet in the coming weeks of the competition.
"We are not where we want to be, and we are a far better outfit than what we have showed so far," he added.
"Sometimes that happens with this sport, but we got ourselves into this and we can certainly get ourselves out of it.
"We will keep putting the work in and I'm sure if we do that and play with the character we have shown over the past four weeks, we can get a good platform.
"We have knuckled down this week, despite Christmas and will hopefully go down to London Irish and pick up a win.
"And it doesn't get any easier, we've got Saracens at home in the new year (Saturday, January 4) and then back into the Heineken Cup.
"But that's what you play the game for. You win some, you lose some, but we have been on our fair share of losing so hopefully we can start winning some.
"We are at a stage now where we've got to win most of our games, and without a doubt we must beat London Irish, for a bit of respect."