9 Performance Anxiety Tips That Every Musician Should Know

Banish music performance anxiety

It feels horrible to struggle with performance anxiety.

It can suck all the joy out of playing music.

The usual advice is that more practice will solve everything. But you’ve probably discovered that doesn’t always work.

Know that performance anxiety is common and perfectly normal. And that there are techniques which will improve things for you.

Here are 9 quick and simple tips that you can use straight away.

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The Secret To Remaining Calm in The Face Of Disaster

It’s every musician’s worst nightmare. Something has gone horribly wrong.

Maybe a string has snapped on your guitar. Maybe there’s a complete train wreck – the tune you’re playing falls apart totally and irreparably. Maybe one of the band members hasn’t shown up.

Or maybe they’ve shown up in such a bad state that they don’t belong anywhere near a stage.

Something beyond your control has messed everything up and there’s nothing you can do to fix it now. So how do you respond?

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Music Can Be Easy

The performance is about to begin.

In a few minutes, I’ll step onto the stage with nothing between me and the audience. I’ll be put to the test.

All my hard work, all my practice is suddenly in the past now. I can’t go back and revisit any problem areas. There is only this present moment.

Somehow, though, things are different this time.

The journey that I’ve been through – the new perspective that I’ve discovered and accepted has changed me.

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Are You Missing Something Vital Before You Start to Play?

Do you find that you start every performance physically relaxed, completely in control and full of confidence? That the notes just come out effortlessly, exactly the way you want them to? That you’re completely focused on the music, without any worries or distractions tugging at your mind?

That’s the goal, but so few of us actually achieve it.

And it turns out that a lot of the secret is not about those first few notes, but the moments immediately BEFORE we start playing.

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How to Make Peace with Your Mistakes

Everything’s going so well – the music’s flowing and it’s a joy to be playing. Then, suddenly – it happens.

Out of nowhere, you mess something up.

You’re thrown rudely out of the present moment and your mind gets stuck in the past.

On that mistake.

All the earlier enjoyment is gone in an instant. More mistakes follow as your mind is unsettled and distracted.

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How To Boost Your Performance Confidence (Without Doing Any Extra Practice)

Photo illustrating music confidence and self belief

How many times have you passed up an opportunity because you weren’t sure you were good enough?

You didn’t get up to play at a jam session once you heard how “good” the other players were. Or you missed the chance to really put yourself forward for a possible gig and found yourself talking down your abilities instead.

Or maybe you went and did it, but spent the whole time worrying that you weren’t good enough. Constantly wondering what the other musicians and the audience thought of you.

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Tame Your Performance Anxiety

Reduce music performance anxiety by making friends with pressure

​It’s your big moment. So much rests on the next few minutes. You can feel your heart pounding. Your palms sweating. Your legs shaking. Your thoughts racing.

Performance anxiety strikes once again. And it’s not helping…

​Huge numbers of musicians find themselves in this situation. Far too many of them ​react in the wrong way.

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