If the thought of getting up and speaking or performing in front or a group or people fills you with dread, you are not alone.
Millions of people suffer from ‘Performance Anxiety’ or what is more commonly called ‘Stage Fright’.
Although called “stage fright” and often associated with public performance or speaking, it doesn’t have to involve a stage.
Anyone whose career or other interests brings them to the attention of an audience, however large or small, can experience performance anxiety.
Performance anxiety is a fear of negative evaluation and is typically seen in activities such as acting, dancing, driving tests, examinations, public speaking, singing, social speaking and sporting performance.
We need nervous energy. Without the nerves and the adrenalin boost, our minds wouldn’t be so sharp, our senses so heightened or our performance so polished. This nervous energy ensures we are on top form.
A confident person will maintain an external focus, delivering a positive, high-class performance, whereas a person with exaggerated levels of anxiety will focus their concentration on their inner feelings; allowing this negative distraction to further affect their performance.
Many people live with the fear of performance anxiety and all of the negative emotions it imposes and will go to any lengths to avoid the possibility of being ‘On Stage’.
If Performance Anxiety is affecting your life, you ‘can’ put an end to this fear, anxiety, avoidance and pretence. Please seek help!
The good news is that performance anxiety is common and treatable.