Hypnotherapy for Performance Anxiety

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For people who perform for a living, performance anxiety can be a debilitating, even a career ending issue. Understandably, the pressure of performing in public can create a huge amount of stress but other contributory factors are involved which include perfectionist traits, overwhelming critical thoughts and high performance expectations.

As with public speaking anxiety, the symptoms can range from low grade feelings of nervousness (which are not necessarily bad as many performers enjoy that rush of adrenaline and excitement) to paralysing fear and panic. Similarly, underlying causes can be rooted in a fear of judgemental evaluation by others, a fear of rejection, a fear of failure and a fear of being watched.

Many eminent musicians have experienced this anxiety from Maria Callas to Barbara Streisand. The famous composer and pianist, Frederic Chopin, once wrote, “I am not fitted to give concerts. The audience intimidates me. I feel choked by its breath, paralysed by its curious glances.”

Having performed to the highest level as a violinist in the BBC Concert Orchestra (my previous career) and experienced years of debilitating performance anxiety, I understand first hand how performance anxiety manifests but also what it takes to successfully overcome it. Hypnotherapy was fundamental in helping me challenge my overly critical thinking, understand that my negative inner dialogue was out of date and build my confidence in my ability.

Treatment consists of several elements but in the first instance, we need to establish the main trigger of your anxiety and seek to resolve this. Once we understand the underlying belief that’s fuelling your anxiety, we can start to reframe any unhelpful thoughts and build your confidence and self-esteem using hypnosis to strengthen the changes that are taking place. I will also equip you with the necessary tools to manage any performance situation successfully which includes understanding your inner critic and learning how to tune out of it, learning to calm down your mind and body and move into the part of your brain where your innate brilliance flourishes, knowing where and how to focus your attention in a performance and changing your perception of your audience.

Finally, it’s all about rehearsal, rehearsal, rehearsal. The good news is that our brains cannot differentiate between what is real and what is imagined. This means that you can practise performing in your mind, enjoying your newfound confidence in your abilities and knowing that you are equipped with all the strategies you need to be the brilliant performer you truly are.

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Hypnotherapy for Performance Anxiety - £75 per session

Each session lasts up to 90 minutes. You will receive two hypnosis recordings, one to help you access feelings of calm whenever you need and the other to help you learn self-hypnosis so you can practise being the successful performer you truly are.