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Bravery is ugly and messy and not at all heroic looking when save its really happening. Next time you feel like a coward because youre about to make a difficult decision and you feel like throwing up, dont beat yourself. Thats not cowardice, thats bravery youre feeling. Next time you cry those tears that feel so stupid because you think brave people wouldnt, stop listening to that lie. With bloody knuckles, youre brave. With doubters laughing at you, youre brave. With butterflies not just fluttering in your stomach, but drunk on four loko shouting lyrics to miley cyrus we cant stop, youre brave.
Its difficult but he leans into the challenge and survives! His girl, who is probably the brunette tomboy he ignored for the hot blonde all too long, will kiss him as the credits play. Bravery is grimaces and grinding it out and wiping sweat off your brow as you save the day! Heres the truth about bravery: Bravery makes you want to throw. Bravery makes you cry. Bravery makes you lose sleep. Bravery makes you lose weight or gain lots of stress pounds.
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My first instinct was to hope it would fall through somehow, because i was nervous that I wouldnt able to deliver a great performance in front of that many people with such short notice. But, because i have been practicing a mindset of positivity toward performance for quite a while now, i was able to quickly shut those thoughts down and accept the opportunity with excitement. Although Ill certainly be nervous when the time comes to play in front of those 3,500 people; i know those nerves wont remote control the course of my performance because i wont be thinking about what could go wrong, but about what could go right. With every performance opportunity, no matter how big or small, you have one choice: you can choose to react out of fear, or out of courage. The former focuses on the negative, while the latter focuses on the positive.
Dont let negativity fuel your fear. I hope this has encouraged to stop avoiding your performance anxiety and to challenge yourself with my 2 steps to start learning to work through. If you know anybody else who might find this post helpful, feel free to share it! Let me know in the comments below how you plan to start performing more often. Id love to hear your thoughts! When we think about bravery and courage, we often imagine those moments from movies. A hero is up against impossible odds.
Negativity fuels your anxiety and causes that downward spiral of What-Ifs weve all experienced at show time: What if I fail? What if they dont like it? What if I didnt memorize my music well enough? What if my hands freeze up? What if I botch that scale? What if i embarrass myself?
You need to discipline yourself to immediately shut down those thoughts and replace them with positivity. When somebody asks you to play something, resist your instinct to clam up and make excuses. Instead of thinking of all the possible negative outcomes, think about the equally possible positive outcomes: The beauty of this music could really uplift their spirits my hard work and preparation could inspire and encourage them This performance could open up great opportunities for. At first, you probably wont even believe the positive things youre telling yourself. But if you force yourself to fixate on the positive with each opportunity that arrives, your mindset toward performance will slowly start to shift, and your instinct to focus on the negative will start to fade. Its an ongoing battle, and Im not ashamed to admit that I still have to remind myself about these concepts regularly. For example, i was just recently asked to perform at an event for 3,500 people, and was only given one month to prepare 50-minutes of new music. I dont believe in sugarcoating stories to make myself look better, so Im about to keep it 100 real with you!
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The more you confront your anxiety, the more youll realize that its just a evernote natural part of performing and it doesnt have to control the outcome of your performance. I know this is a hard goal to set for yourself, because if youre struggling with performance anxiety, the last thing you want to do is perform on a regular basis. But if youre serious about wanting to work through your anxiety, you just have to do it! Find somebody to help keep you accountable. Somebody who can check in to make sure youre meeting your performance goal. You can even email me, id be happy to help! 2) Practice positivity That might sound cheesy, but hear me out! If you allow yourself to consistently fill your mind with self-doubt and negativity, your mind is going to default to those thoughts when anxiety sets.
Choose whichever frequency is realistic for you, but it has to be more often than you are currently performing. Performances can come app in many different forms. It might not be possible for you to get up on stage in a concert hall in front of hundreds of people every month. Here are some other options: Play at restaurants. Play open-mic nights, play at churches, play at hospitals and nursing homes. Play at schools, play on the street (not literally on the street, although that would definitely stir up some anxiety!). Play at a park, play for friends, play for a friend. Play for family, play for your significant other, record/Film yourself playing There are tons of options out there, but the point is to pick both an environment and an audience that allow you to perform regularly and that make you nervous. If it doesnt make you nervous, find a different setting that does.
soon as I felt the first signs of anxiety. I thought I couldnt possibly deliver a great performance until I had managed to completely rid myself of all signs of performance anxiety. Discovering that performance anxiety was normal even among the worlds best performers taught me to stop wasting my time trying to rid myself of my anxiety, but to learn how to work through. Instead of fearing the anxiety itself, embrace the fact that its natural, and learn how to work through. Now Im going to give you 2 practical steps to help you start learning how to work through your performance anxiety. 1) Perform Often, this first step is simple. To learn how to work through your performance anxiety, you need to confront it more often. Make yourself a goal to perform regularly.
Your memory fails as your fingers try to find their next notes. Ive experienced each one good of these symptoms of performance anxiety, along with many others. Over the years, i have learned (and am still learning) how to work through them, and have coached many other guitarists through their own anxiety. In order to start working through your performance anxiety, you have to come to terms with one simple fact: The ugly truth about performance anxiety is that, it rarely ever goes away. It may diminish with time and experience, but the fear and the effects that go along with it rarely disappear completely. Now before you let that discourage you, i want you to realize that theres a very comforting reality behind that truth. Ive heard many professional musicians, athletes, and actors at the top of their fields talk about how they still experience performance anxiety, yet theyre known for consistently delivering incredible performances. The key is that they dont allow their anxiety to dictate their performance. The comforting fact here is that its ok to get nervous!
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As many of you know, when you sign up for my newsletter, i ask you to reply with your answers to 3 questions. One of those questions is, What is currently your biggest struggle with the guitar? Ive already received a bunch of great responses, movie but the most common struggle ive heard is performance anxiety. If you have ever performed for anybody, you have most certainly experienced some form of performance anxiety: your fingers turn ice-cold (my personal favorite). Your hands shake, your hands sweat, your heart races. You feel sick to your stomach. You start doubting and questioning your ability.