The Irony of Singing AnxietySinging can be a very care-free activity to do, whether you’re singing in the car, in the shower, or even on stage. Research studies actually show that singing is a mood lifter and can be used to reduce anxiety. But singing in front of people can be a real challenge for so many. So why do some singers struggle with being anxious before singing in front of others or getting on stage? If you’ve ever been there before you know what I mean when I say singing can get so nerve racking that it sounds like your heartbeat is having its own jam session in your chest. If you notice that when you have these anxious episodes you’re filled with self-doubt and complete worry about messing up, you may be suffering from singing anxiety.
What Exactly Is Singing AnxietyAnxiety is defined as a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease. This typically happens surrounding an important event or something with an uncertain outcome. Side effects include, but are not limited to, trembling, feeling weak, rapid breathing and not being able to focus on anything but the situation. Does this sound like you before you record a song or hit the stage? How ironic it is that an activity that is proven to make you happier can also make you so nervous you may pass out. But notice how the anxiety is attached to an idea of something important, so it’s not really your singing that is making you anxious. The anxiety is determined by how much pressure you put on the outcome. You could even say it’s all in your head.
What Triggers Anxiety While PerformingAs singers, we all want to sound and perform perfectly and so we tend to be hard on ourselves. Which doesn’t have to be a negative thing, as long as we also strive to perfect easing the anxious moments. Things like:
- A lack of preparedness,
- Personal Insecurities,
- Negative thoughts
- and over critiquing ourselves
will trigger this singers’ anxiety. And although we are all different, I’m sure that we can all benefit from a couple of anti-anxiety tips.
Solutions for Anxiety
Perfect your techniques. This will help with your confidence and do away with insecurities. If you are practicing your song every day, warming up your voice every day and doing what you need to do to personally feel prepared for your upcoming event you shouldn’t struggle with the anxiousness as heavily.
It’s even a good idea to practice your singing in front of family and friends. So that you can get safe outside opinions about how your performance appears to an audience. If this is not something you’re ready to do just record yourself singing then listen to it to pick out certain parts to work on.
Avoid focusing on what could go wrong. Focus on what will go right because of how prepared and confident you are. Constantly thinking about the negative outcomes will just leave you anxious and more susceptible to messing up somehow.
Shift that focus towards what you know you can do and how great you’re going to be. Think about your goals and actually visualize yourself nailing every note and giving the audience a performance like they’ve never seen or heard before.
The Irony Of It All!
The irony in singing anxiety is that it is naturally an expression of joy yet singers can make it a stressful task by thinking too much about it.
Yes it’s perfectly fine to want to do your best, but remember why you sing and how it makes you feel when you feel the anxious nerves creeping in. A happy singer is the best kind of singer.
If you believe you are struggling with anxiety please see a medical doctor as we do not claim to be medical professionals.