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10 rules that will help you avoid performance anxiety

Conquering Stage Fright

Many Americans report that public speaking is their greatest fear, surpassing flight, financial ruin, illness, and even death.

Some people would rather be in their own coffins than give a eulogy at a funeral, according to a joke. Many people would agree with this, even if it is an exaggeration.

When preparing to speak or perform in front of a group, most of us experience some anxiety. However, persons who experience fear and terror in such situations—or anywhere else where they may be the centre of attention—might be suffering from a sort of social anxiety disorder (also known as social phobia).

Fear of public speaking or performance, often known as stage fright, has a significant impact on self-confidence and self-esteem, leading some people to drop out of school, quit their work, or pass up a promotion. Many people, especially seasoned professional performers, are terrified. People strive to hide their fear, even from their spouses or other close family members or friends, since they are embarrassed.

Taking Action to Conquer Your Fear

Learning to improve your speaking or performance skills is beneficial, but it is rarely enough to help you overcome your fear. Any negative impressions, ideas, thoughts, pictures, or predictions you have about public speaking or performing must be addressed and revised. It's also beneficial to explore the deeper worries of being seen and heard by others, displaying weakness, and being judged as less than flawless. Healing begins with learning to love yourself and not feeling obligated to prove yourself to others.

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To help alleviate the symptoms of performance anxiety, some people turn to pharmaceutical or natural therapies. Consult your doctor to determine the best course of action for you.

You will build an empowering conviction and trust in yourself if you are willing to quit ignoring your anxieties and learn new techniques to decrease and manage them. It is possible to overcome performance anxiety and discover comfort and ease in expressing yourself in front of others by embracing your fear.

Try these 10 tips to reduce your stage fright:

  1. Shift your focus away from yourself and your fears and onto your genuine goal: providing value to your audience.

  2. Stop worrying about what could possibly go wrong. Rather, concentrate on calming and reassuring thoughts and images.

  3. Refuse to think self-doubting and insecure thoughts.

  4. Deep breathing, relaxation techniques, yoga, and meditation are all excellent strategies to quiet and relax your mind and body.

  5. Exercise, eat healthily, and follow other healthy living practises are all recommended. As much as possible, avoid caffeine, sugar, and alcohol.

  6. Visualize yourself achieving your goals: Always keep your attention on your strength and ability to deal with adversity.

  7. Prepare your material ahead of time and read it aloud to yourself so that you can hear what you're saying.

  8. Make eye contact with your audience by smiling and greeting them as friends rather than foes.

  9. Stand or sit with a confident, self-assured stance. Maintain a pleasant and open demeanour, and maintain eye contact.

  10. Give up trying to be flawless and accept that mistakes are inevitable. Be natural and true to yourself.

References: Scientific References

Stein, M.B., Walker, J.R., & Forde, D.R. (1996). Public speaking fears in the community: Prevalence, impact on functioning, and diagnostic classification. Archives of General Psychiatry, 53, 169-174.

Stein, M.B., Walker, J.R., & Forde, D.R. (1994). Setting diagnostic thresholds for social phobia: Considerations from a community survey of social anxiety. American Journal of Psychiatry, 151, 408-412.

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