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Advice for performing with Social anxiety disorder?

W

westendgirl

New member
Joined
Jan 10, 2020
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1
Location
narnia
Okay, so I am a violinist and have been doing lessons for more than 5 years. In a couple of months I have a big performance. I'm not going to be a soloist so I'll have other people on stage with me but I am so so nervous about it. Whenever I perform in front of people (even in front of my teacher sometimes) I get very anxious, my arms and legs shake like crazy. Its so frustrating because I've practiced and put in the work but my anxiety ruins it every time I play in front of others.
I was diagnosed with SAD a couple years ago but cant get therapy/help due to it not being covered with insurance. Before one of my violin exams I even threw up because I was so nervous.
The performance is semi-important, most of my teachers/principal/other important people from school are going to be there and basically a crowd full of random people. I also want to make a good impression on the head of music so I can get into an ensemble next year.
I dont really have the opportunity to perform in front of others that I dont know, so I can't really get some practice on playing in front of crowds.
I'm mainly scared of making a mistake, no matter how much I practice I'm never 100% confident in myself because I know I'm going to be shaky (literally and figuratively haha)
What can I do to help/alleviate my anxiety? Any performers or musicians can give their advice on this or what they do before going on stage and things like that? I'm terrified of messing up even though my teacher says that my playing is really good.
This is my first time posting on this forum so I'm sorry if there are any mistakes. Thank you!
 
N

Nukelavee

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Dec 17, 2019
Messages
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Location
London, ON
Violinist? nice!

The easiest, quickest thing to learn is breathing to help anxiety. Anxiety has a physical and mental factor, and they play off one another. If you physically feel nervous, you brain will start thinking nervous thoughts, which will increase physical anxiety, which will increase mental anxiety...

So, break the cycle. If you can calm your thoughts, your body feel calmer, calm you body, your thinking will calm.

So -breath. When you feel nervous - slow down your breathing. count to four with each time you inhale or exhale. This will help slow down your heart and the physical butterflies, and help your thinking. It takes a bit of practice but it works.

I'm an artist, and I find drawing or painting helps me, because as I get lost in what I am doing, I forget the anxious thoughts and feelings. Be confident in your skills, let the music and physical aspects of playing take over.
 
I

ibrah99

Member
Joined
May 18, 2020
Messages
10
Location
united kingdom
Okay, so I am a violinist and have been doing lessons for more than 5 years. In a couple of months I have a big performance. I'm not going to be a soloist so I'll have other people on stage with me but I am so so nervous about it. Whenever I perform in front of people (even in front of my teacher sometimes) I get very anxious, my arms and legs shake like crazy. Its so frustrating because I've practiced and put in the work but my anxiety ruins it every time I play in front of others.
I was diagnosed with SAD a couple years ago but cant get therapy/help due to it not being covered with insurance. Before one of my violin exams I even threw up because I was so nervous.
The performance is semi-important, most of my teachers/principal/other important people from school are going to be there and basically a crowd full of random people. I also want to make a good impression on the head of music so I can get into an ensemble next year.
I dont really have the opportunity to perform in front of others that I dont know, so I can't really get some practice on playing in front of crowds.
I'm mainly scared of making a mistake, no matter how much I practice I'm never 100% confident in myself because I know I'm going to be shaky (literally and figuratively haha)
What can I do to help/alleviate my anxiety? Any performers or musicians can give their advice on this or what they do before going on stage and things like that? I'm terrified of messing up even though my teacher says that my playing is really good.
This is my first time posting on this forum so I'm sorry if there are any mistakes. Thank you!
Hey
I feel like this too. You have nothing to feel ashamed about as there are many socially anxious performers who get what you have or if you're like me outright you avoid performing! You are going to do well and your memory muscles you have trained will kick in when you need them to as that will be your new 'normal' when you are in the zone. I find saying stuff like this to other socially anxious people helps strengthen my own belief in it (you believe what youpreach) and maybe I would suggest saying this to other socially anxious people in a similar boat in the forums! But more than that I would try doing an act of service to your other performers and the audience before during and after and try to smile during your performance as both the service and the smile keeps your focus on the hope and the fact that no one is thinking of you and are either not thinking of you, are thinking good of you, or are thinking neutrally (anything else is none of our mental business however difficult it is to not be more curious or attentive). Fundamentally these are short term techniques I've used as a shit scared ptsd socially anxious person but long term I would suggest a support group to help you recover from SAD (emotions anonymous might be of help if you can't get therapy) :).
 
K

Kcbkcb58

Member
Joined
Jun 18, 2020
Messages
5
Location
United States
Okay, so I am a violinist and have been doing lessons for more than 5 years. In a couple of months I have a big performance. I'm not going to be a soloist so I'll have other people on stage with me but I am so so nervous about it. Whenever I perform in front of people (even in front of my teacher sometimes) I get very anxious, my arms and legs shake like crazy. Its so frustrating because I've practiced and put in the work but my anxiety ruins it every time I play in front of others.
I was diagnosed with SAD a couple years ago but cant get therapy/help due to it not being covered with insurance. Before one of my violin exams I even threw up because I was so nervous.
The performance is semi-important, most of my teachers/principal/other important people from school are going to be there and basically a crowd full of random people. I also want to make a good impression on the head of music so I can get into an ensemble next year.
I dont really have the opportunity to perform in front of others that I dont know, so I can't really get some practice on playing in front of crowds.
I'm mainly scared of making a mistake, no matter how much I practice I'm never 100% confident in myself because I know I'm going to be shaky (literally and figuratively haha)
What can I do to help/alleviate my anxiety? Any performers or musicians can give their advice on this or what they do before going on stage and things like that? I'm terrified of messing up even though my teacher says that my playing is really good.
This is my first time posting on this forum so I'm sorry if there are any mistakes. Thank you!
Hi,
I know many performers use a beta blocker, Propranolol about 30 minutes before their performance or a speech, etc. It has no side effects and will not make you drowsy and you can take it only as needed. It will stop the shaking, which obviously makes it hard to focus on your performance. Google panic att
 
K

Kcbkcb58

Member
Joined
Jun 18, 2020
Messages
5
Location
United States
Okay, so I am a violinist and have been doing lessons for more than 5 years. In a couple of months I have a big performance. I'm not going to be a soloist so I'll have other people on stage with me but I am so so nervous about it. Whenever I perform in front of people (even in front of my teacher sometimes) I get very anxious, my arms and legs shake like crazy. Its so frustrating because I've practiced and put in the work but my anxiety ruins it every time I play in front of others.
I was diagnosed with SAD a couple years ago but cant get therapy/help due to it not being covered with insurance. Before one of my violin exams I even threw up because I was so nervous.
The performance is semi-important, most of my teachers/principal/other important people from school are going to be there and basically a crowd full of random people. I also want to make a good impression on the head of music so I can get into an ensemble next year.
I dont really have the opportunity to perform in front of others that I dont know, so I can't really get some practice on playing in front of crowds.
I'm mainly scared of making a mistake, no matter how much I practice I'm never 100% confident in myself because I know I'm going to be shaky (literally and figuratively haha)
What can I do to help/alleviate my anxiety? Any performers or musicians can give their advice on this or what they do before going on stage and things like that? I'm terrified of messing up even though my teacher says that my playing is really good.
This is my first time posting on this forum so I'm sorry if there are any mistakes. Thank you!
Hi,

There is a medication that many people for performance anxiety and it will help to stop the extreme nervousness and shaking. It is a beta blocker, Propranolol. It can be taken 30 minutes before your performance and it has very few side effects. Best of luck! Kate
 
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