Conquering Performance Anxiety from Inside Out

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Article by Helen Spielman, a performance anxiety coach. Her writing appears in a variety of music publications.

'I believe I have to suffer in order to perform well,’ said Isabelle, a beautiful woman and professional singer who came to me for performance anxiety coaching. Although she passionately loved to perform, Isabelle often felt terrified, as though she was ‘going to die’ before walking on stage. She received great praise for her per- formances but thought of herself as ‘not that good’ and described her inner experi- ence as ‘being strangled, as though hands were twisting around my lungs’. Her pulse raced and she felt out of control, fearful of not singing perfectly and worried about what listeners thought of her. At age thirty-four, Isabelle believed she was too old to pursue her musical dreams. She kept herself overly busy doing other things ‘to avoid the pain of not performing’ as much as she wanted to. When she did perform, she felt unsatisfied with the results she achieved. . . read more at
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