One of the biggest stumbling blocks for a singer is fear. When fear enters into the picture it becomes viral and infects every aspect of performance. So, it’s important to note that if
fear becomes your motivator you’re likely setting yourself up to fail.
However, the desire to face a fear so that it can be conquered is not only healthy but can be very empowering. It can be life-changing when it’s overcome, but life-threatening when it’s overlooked.
Clouding the Issue
Think of any point in the pursuit of your singing success where you were truly battling some issue of nerves or lack of confidence or even depression of some sort where the central issue was fear. The problem with fear is that it quickly clouds the issue.
In fact, it steals focus to the point of becoming the center of attention or distraction. A huge portion of your time and energy is suddenly shifted to the fear. Suddenly you begin to have a parade of “what-if” scenarios stumbling and screaming their way through your mind, nerves, and senses.
Emotional vs. Logical
Then, concentration is compromised because fear triggers an emotional response that overtakes the logical. You then draw a blank on lyrics to a favorite song, or you forget the name of your accompanist. Maybe those lyrics you forgot are actually from a song you wrote or at least knew by heart – for years. Your timing is then suddenly thrown off just a bit off. You start sweating profusely or even feel dizzy or queasy.
It Kills the Competition
Fear is especially lethal in competitive situations such as auditions, talent shows, and TV programs like American Idol, The Sing-Off and The Voice. When the focus is on winning by itself, the fear of losing becomes a debilitating threat for many. This fear only gains its stronghold when winning becomes more important than connecting with your audience by delivering the song you’re singing.
Tell the Story
In fact, the emotional journey in the story you’re telling through the song must be your top priority, whether you’re auditioning, singing for tips at a Shakespeare in the Park summer benefit, or competing for a spot as a finalist on American Idol, The Sing-Off or The Voice.
When you are well-rehearsed, know the story of the song you’re singing, and have taken time to engage in a complete warm up both vocally and physically, the only fear to be allowed is that fear that comes as a result of the emotional elements in the story of your song.
If you’re worried about making a strong impression in a meeting with a venue owner, a potential manager or booking agent, a producer for a studio session, or the director of a musical that you’d love to be a part of, fear can undermine and even eliminate your slightest to greatest chance for success.
In a business meeting, fear will trip up your confidence, and you’ll fumble then crumble because your focus has shifted from connecting what you bring to the table with what is needed. You must be clear on the power and real value of your unique gifts.
Well-rehearsed + Fully Prepared
Just as it’s vital for you to be well-rehearsed and fully prepared for each performance in the studio, on camera, on stage, or at any live performance, you must also be fully prepared and well-rehearsed for every meeting related to the advancement of your career as a singer, singer-songwriter, singing musician, or musical performer.
Keep Opportunity Knocking
Be fully confident in the value of what your voice brings to the mix, knowing that if they say, no, it’s not the end of the world. You must develop a level of awareness, confidence, competence, and comfort, so that you walk away from situations where things didn’t pan out, but you’re ready for the next opportunity because you believe in your gifts and are committed to delivering them to the fullest potential.
Use the SingingSuccess.tv forums to talk about successes and failures as well as offering advice on handing fear. Think of those times in your life where you failed miserably because fear paralyzed your gift for moving others with your singing. Think of your very first victory in conquering fear, and share that story with others via the forums. Offer any tips for what to do when having to battle last minute bouts with insecurity.
Book a session with a Brett Manning certified associate via Skype, over the phone, or in the studio. Ask them for pointers on handling issues with anxiety or self-esteem. Even if it has not been a problem for you, chances are you know someone or will encounter someone that struggles with these issues.
Show Your Support
You may even face situations where there are people you are trusting during a performance that are struggling with such issues. Their ability to cope can have a huge bearing on the quality of your performance. Remember to always be well-rehearsed and fully-prepared for every situation that will impact advancement of your singing success.
Always show support for others and offer positive reinforcement so that fear never gets a foothold in the pursuit of your true singing success.