Tips for Overcoming Performance Anxiety

  • Be prepared: practice, practice, practice.
  • Shift the focus off of yourself and your fear to the enjoyment you are providing to the spectators. Close your eyes and imagine the audience laughing and cheering, and you feeling good.
  • Don’t focus on what could go wrong. Instead focus on the positive. Visualize your success.
  • Avoid thoughts that produce self-doubt.
  • Practice controlled breathing, meditationbiofeedback, and other strategies to help you relax and redirect your thoughts when they turn negative. It is best to practice some type of relaxation technique every day, regardless of whether you have a performance, so that the skill is there for you when you need it.
  • Take a walk, jump up and down, shake out your muscles, or do whatever feels right to ease your anxious feelings before the performance.
  • Connect with your audience — smile, make eye contact, and think of them as friends.
  • Act natural and be yourself.