Stressed, but not too stressed
Professional athletes, musicians, dancers, actors and speakers realize that stress can be their best friend or their worst enemy. Too little stress and there is reduced enthusiasm and energy for the task; too much and mistakes abound and things a person knew very well are forgotten. Excellence requires finding that right balance and being able to create it when needed.
Even people who love to be in the limelight sometimes get nervous about being scrutinized. It may be an opening night in a theater production, a band or orchestra solo, a piano or dance recital, or an important presentation or speech. They dread making mistakes or appearing foolish. If they are being evaluated or graded on what they are doing, the anxiety connected to scrutiny can be multiplied because the person or persons that sit before them (with clipboard or notebook in hand and a critical air about them) have the expressed purpose of evaluating how well the performers do at their given tasks. Scared, panicked or unnerved could be a fair description of what the one in the spotlight is feeling – and that can lead to the one thing the performer dreads: mistakes.
Why does it seem so easy for others?
Everyone has probably known or observed the kind of people who seem to thrive and excel under stress. They may not necessarily be the most talented but they are the most consistent, and that leads to success in that which they apply their talents. Certainly they are confident in their abilities and in themselves but why is it that anxiety does not affect them in the same way it affects others? How did they get confident in the first place? The truth is that they probably learned, somewhere along the way, to manage reactivity – that tendency to lose control of the emotions.
Here are some resources on this website that may be or assistance to you in the area of reactivity:
Four stress styles
We are here to help you succeed
We are a business that specializes in helping people to master the various kinds of situational pressures that life offers. In dealing with the difficulties surrounding performances, Stress Solutions offers several approaches to helping students and professionals:
Personal consultation: helping individuals to learn confidence building, relaxation techniques and ways of enlivening self when lethargic
Three hour Performance Stress Solutions workshops: a cost effective way to gain and practice your newly learned knowledge and techniques
Consultation with teachers and trainers: a way to learn these techniques and be able to incorporate performance stress management into their teaching
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