Performance Anxiety

Performance Anxiety and how it affects us.

Where do we start with performance anxiety! This area is so big and covers so many different issues. Here is a list of a few:

  • Exam performance
  • Sporting performance
  • Interview performance
  • Speaking to groups
  • Artistic performance (singing, acting etc)
  • ?
  • ?
  • ?

The questions marks are for your issue that I haven’t mentioned. In each and every one of the examples above the only thing stopping that person from performing the way that they want to is their perception of what that event means. We could take a mock exam paper home and sit quietly at a table and no doubt answer questions calmly and get the score we deserve. However when put in an exam situation, a great big hall where you are not allowed to talk, surrounded by 50 other nervous individuals we start to read too much into it. There is now also something riding on our results. They mean something compared to a mock exam where it doesn’t matter if we fail… but you didn’t… you passed it… why should this be any different?

Or then there is sporting events. I have worked with professional sportsmen and women from footballers to golfers to snooker players. One of the snooker players I worked with was an amateur who had already achieved one of the highest breaks ever at 151 (possible as his opponent had fouled). He had all the talent and skill and was winning his amateur competitions with ease. However when it came to the tournaments where he could win his pro card it was a different scenario. He was rarely winning and actually losing to people he’d previously never lost to. When asked why, he said he kept thinking about how if he lost then his chance would be gone, where as there was nothing riding on his amateur matches apart from some small prize money.

These really highlight how our levels of anxiety can actually be working against the very thing it is trying to achieve. Anxiety is there to protect us and to help us perform our best, and to a degree this works. The issue is when this anxiety goes above the optimal level and our performance starts to drop. See the graph below to demonstrate this.

Think about your life. What would you do better, more efficiently and more enjoyably if you were remained relaxed and calm? We can help you. Anxiety is the number one thing we work with at Cambridge Hypnotherapy. Over 50% of our clients are here for some sort of anxiety issue. In only 2-3 sessions you too can be free just like they now are.

Contact us now on 01223 720 120 to find out more, or click here to send us an email.

I look forward to hearing from you,

Luke

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