Mental Training for Musicians - Overcome Performance Anxiety | Alexandra Belibou | Skillshare

Mental Training for Musicians - Overcome Performance Anxiety

Alexandra Belibou, Musician, Assistant Professor

Mental Training for Musicians - Overcome Performance Anxiety

Alexandra Belibou, Musician, Assistant Professor

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5 Lessons (29m)
    • 1. Intro

    • 2. Lesson 1

    • 3. Lesson 2

    • 4. Lesson 3

    • 5. Lesson 4

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About This Class

In this course I propose some exercises to help musicians overcome stage fright and performance anxiety. Practice is the key to success, so don't expect for immediate results, have patience with yourself! 

Lesson 1 talks about 2 very important ideas: 

  1. You are not the mistakes you make
  2. Musical performance is about sharing

Lesson 2 talks about the importance of inner positive dialog.

Lesson 3 is about exercises to connect your mind with your body, and to reduce stress level.

Lesson 4 gives hints for overcoming performance anxiety. 

Meet Your Teacher

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Alexandra Belibou

Musician, Assistant Professor



My name is Alexandra and I am a professional musician. I am a PhD Assistant professor at the Faculty of Music, I play the piano and I sing, and I am also part of Trupa 6 band ( I love music and I started studying it when I was 6. After 25 years I still love it and I try to become better each day.

Being a musician means having good communication skills, analytical thinking, flexibility, good planning and organisational skills, it also demands energy and responsibility.

I like teaching music because it's great to share my knowledge with the world.



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1. Intro: Hello. Welcome to my course. My name is Alexandra and I m a PhD assistant professor at the music faculty. I play the piano, and I also sink, So I designed to discourse for musicians. If you ever experienced stage fried performance anxiety or you find it hard to connect your mind with your body violence stage, this is the perfect course for you. Mental training for musicians is very important because it helps you eliminate negative thoughts and mental blocks about performing. So all you need to do is have a positive attitude and the wheel to learn. And if you're ready, we will start our course through this course. I propose some mental training exercises that you can dio to become the best version of yourself as a musician. 2. Lesson 1: Hello. Welcome to my course. As I already mentioned in my introduction video. My lessons will help you get rid off stage fright performance. Anxiety will help you connect your mind with your body when you're on stage will help you get rid of your negative thoughts and all off this will be possible to mental training exercises for musicians. Why is this important? I honestly met a lot of great musicians that we're missing the fun part off sharing the music they learned and they played or sing because they were afraid because they were all obsessed with negative thoughts about mistakes they could do on stage or certain musical fragments there were challenging. They were obsessing about them. Music is not about that. Music is about sharing and having fun and being joyful and grateful for the gift. You have to be a musician. In this first lesson, I will propose to exercise this mental exercises that will help you understand two simple principles. The first idea I want you to remember and learn and understand is the fact that the mistakes you make are not who you are. The mistakes you make are just something you accidentally do so wrong. Note. Played on stage Doesn't make your bad musician is just something you accidentally do, so you have to get rid of the idea that a mistake made is something that you are. I read in psychology books that this type off thinking of the confusion about the mistakes I make with who I am. Custom childhood. So that's why I propose the first exercise that you can do anything you want. Anytime you need and feel. You should be quiet and peaceful place, but it doesn't really matter. You just have to close your eyes and relax. I remember a moment in time which made a mistake as a child. It doesn't matter what type of mistake. It doesn't have to be a musician mistake. It could be when you broke your neighbor's window or something. I don't know. It doesn't matter. So remember that mistaken made and instead remembering the other that made you feel better about yourself. Imagine the person you are today going to the U child and saying you are not the mistakes you make. The mistakes you make are just something you accidentally do and saying this you will try to change some thoughts you gained as a child and changing this, you will be better on stage. I promise. It is so remember to tell the child in front of you that the mistakes we do are part off becoming better, so we could not be who we are today without the stupid things we've made. Now, the second exercise I want you to do and learn, um, iss for understanding that when you're on stage, it's all about sharing. So you could be someone who is a perfectionist when you are rehearsing or when you study a piece of music or when you're seven music in general. But when you're on stage, you have to forget everything about that. You are there for your audience. You're there to share, to share beauty and to share joy. You're not there to counter mistakes. You are not there to be afraid. Do your job and go home. That's not what a musician means. There's a simple exercise that proposed a mental one and 1 to 2 again. Close your eyes and relax and imagine yourself going on stage and just go on stage. You're not playing, you're not singing, you're not doing anything musical. You just go on stage and you look at your audience. Imagine that there's a lot of people there, including your professors, the people you hate, the ones who took bad about yourself. It doesn't matter. Everybody's their whole countries there, so I know it will be kind of scary, and you will have that instinct to be afraid. But instead of letting that that feeling take over, you breathe and relax. Try to smile at your audience and think about the fact that you want to share the beauty of music with everybody in that room, everybody from So you're there to do your job as an artist to share joy. Keeping this in mind, just repeat these thoughts and smile at your audience and try to embrace your audience. This will help you step by step. Doing this exercise daily or any time you need to do with even before going on stage is a secret exercise so you can mentally prepare yourself for going on stage. You will gain the control of your own thoughts, so the joy that you will want to share will be powerful and will be more powerful than the fear that that makes us have this stage Friday, this performance anxiety. But this is all for today. Try to do this to exercises as often as you can and try to change the way you think by 3. Lesson 2 : Hi, guys. Welcome to our second lesson in this lesson. I will talk about the importance off a positive dialogue with yourself in order to change your negative thinking because negative thoughts steal your energy and make vulnerable. Stop pulling yourself with negative thinking. This is something that it's It's good for you as a musician, but is good for your social life as well for your day to day life. So this lesson applies to every aspect off life on stage to there are seven things we say to ourselves. Negative things that we have to leave behind. So starting from today, I propose to change the way we think. We often say that we're not lucky enough or, oh, bad things only happen to me or stuff like this. Never say that again. Don't bull yourself with that stupid negative thoughts, and sure, you're lucky and you have a lot of things to be thankful for. So first exercise, the first thing you have to do never say things like that to yourself. Second thing I wanted to know is that you don't have to be perfect in order to make people like you. This is something you have to remember for your social life and when being on stage, too. So when you are on stage, you can be a very pleasant of musicians and artists. Even if you're not perfect, you don't have to have a perfect technique and to play or sing everything perfectly, you have to have a positive and opened attitude, and people will live in. Your audience will be just hypnotized by you if you're open and positive. So this comes from the way you think as well. You have to stop thinking that people will like you only if you're perfect. You are perfect just the way you are with your floors and qualities, so you don't have to be perfect to gain affection and love. Another thing that people do and I want to you to stop doing it is to look at the future or at the new challenges like that, something very scary. So fear gets in the way and just blocks you. I don't want to be like that. I want you to embrace the future as on opportunity to become better, and everything that's new and challenging should be something spectacular and you have to learn from every experience you have last but not least, remember, you never have to say to yourself that you are no good or that you don't know how to do anything. People could make you feel like that, but you are the only one who can block the negative thoughts. Just lock them away, and your inner dialogue has to always be positive. So never say that you're some starting from today, you're not allowed to talk negative to yourself, and this will help you see what your qualities and flaws are. Try to fix the floors, but be more focused on your qualities and do stuff that that are more close to your qualities and put yourself in a good like this is something that only you can do now in order to do all those things I've said before together it off All the negative thoughts I've said before. I want to do the next exercise. The next exercise. It's about some questions I want you to remember, and whenever you feel down, or the negative thoughts just come into your mind and you want to block them away and keep yourself positive. Just remember these three questions the 1st 1 is what would I say to my best friend if he or she would have this type of negative thoughts? So the answer to this question is exactly the the answer you are looking for. So this is the first question I want you to remember as an exercise. Do it any time you feel bad, or any time you feel you need to say something bad about yourself inside. The second question I wanted to remember and to ask yourself is how would I feel if I would be able to get rid of the negative thoughts? Would I feel better? And the third question I want you to remember is a question that regards unpleasant situation. So every time you you feel that you are in a uncomfortable situation or something bad happened to you, try to ask herself the next question. Can I see a bright side off this situation? Is there any positive way to look at this certain situation? And I'm sure you will say yes and you will find the positive part off a certain situation. Nothing is black. Nothing is white. Everything has two colors in it. Now, all the things I've said before seem like something you can apply in your day to day life. But if you manage to keep your inner Delek positive, he will be in control off all your feelings on stage as well. So you have to be a very balanced and positive human being in order to be able to spread joy on stage. So you have to change the way you think in order to be in control, off who you are professionally as well. And this will help you in her social life as well. So remember the three questions and try to get rid off all the negative thoughts I've said before. Have a great day by 4. Lesson 3 : Hi, guys. Welcome back in this lesson, we will talk about the importance of connecting your mind which your body? Because in stressful situations or when you're anxious, you lose control of your own body. So you have to do some exercises as often as you can. So the true there, how mentally control your body Breathing is one of the most important part off the calming process. So maybe you you notice that when you have a very hard they or you're stressed or you get get anxious, you feel that your abdominal muscles are test. So with this exercises, I will show you you will learn how to bring correctly in order to relax your lower by another thing. Maybe you've noticed it went in a dangerous situation. Our breathing becomes a superficial and we did not get enough air to calm ourselves. So we tend to breed here in our article upper body and we breathe very quickly. But I repeat, you can do some exercises to learn how to control your breathing in your lower body and relax your muscles in order to be in control of your own body and to connect your mind with your body and to get peace in your muscles and in your body. The first exercise I want to show you divorce a deep breathing so that you can learn how to calm yourself and to get your piece in your whole body through breeding. So what is a deep breathing? A. D printing means not using all your upper body to get air in and out, but to capture air as low as you can in your abdominal muscles. So you have to feel that you expand when you inhale like this and you expand and he just gets in and you just get very Avery and everything. And then when you exhale, you have to do the same thing. Just user abdominal muscles in your lower body to get your air out. So you have to be very relaxed here up and very engaged in your lower body. And the exercise I proposed goes like this. You inhale and you comes to five in your mind, and then you exhale while you count to six. So five for while taking the air in and six while getting here out slowly and very controlled. So like this. So we drum up a little bit open. Very call very in control and with a very deep breathing. So you can close your eyes and do this for I don't know, 456 times, and you will feel that you are in control of her own body. Don't think about anything, girls. Just think about the counting and breeding and feel the air going to your body. So show it to you again and please do it with calm and with a very open and relaxed mind without thinking about anything else just counting and being in control off the way the air gets in and out. This is the only thing you have to think about. So again, I just close my eyes or I look at something very beautiful, like a sunrise or something, and it just count to five. So five in and six out and did this? I don't know, as I said before, five or 46 times. Then just come for a little bit and do it again. Don't leave too many ties because you will get dizzy. If you're not used to very deep breathing. Do it slowly. Once upon a time, every day so that you can get a very deep breathing and controlled one if you're not used to this kind off the breeding, another exercise I advise you to do in order to learn how to read correctly. Four. Calming yourself to get peace inside and just to connect your mind with your body and forget about all the negative thoughts is this one you hailed very lightly and very profound here down here and then just hold your breath. You're in for five counts and then get it out very quickly and powerful again. Weaker a month, a little bit open. So like this. So I get here out very quickly. I hailed normally every profound that I get. I keep the air in for five counts. I can't. Don't think about anything else. Just think about the breeding, the calming, a sensation and the counting. That's all you have to think about so very, very calm and letting all your stress out from your system. Okay, so again, I just take the Arian, let it out very quickly. Like the previous exercise, this one helps you get your stress level down in your anxiety level down a true deep reading because, like I said before, breathing is very important in the calming process because your muscles gain a certain memory, and when you are all stage or you're in a very stressful situation, you're in danger. Feels like something that it's going to happen. You just have to concentrate on your breathing, and you will see that you can calm yourself through this type of exercises and deep breathing. So you have to to do this exercise as often. Use cancer, your muscle, gain a certain memory, and you can go back to this coming sensation through breeding very quickly. And like an autumn, it is, um, remember, everything needs to be practiced. So before going on stage and being able to calm yourself and reduce her anxiety and your stage pride, you have to practice the common process at home 30 breeding and through other exercises that I will show you right now. The next exercise I propose is about connecting again your mind with your body. But now I wanted to try to learn how to relax your muscles one of time, so here's what you have to do. Just end your thoughts and your mind I don't need anything going through your head. I just wanted to think about the calming process. So just lay down and cauterizing a quiet and peaceful place. Just a time. Don't hurry and try to imagine that you relax one muscle at a time. So first think about your left arm. Just think about it and feel it. And just Philip heavy and very relaxed and everything. But just imagine you have just one arm, the whole left arm. Okay, so try to imagine that it gets heavier and all your muscles are very relaxed. Just keep that in mind. They repeat that to yourself and let how to control just one a big part of your body. Then go to the other apart. It gets heavy and like all the muscles, and you just have just one big, very heavy arm. Don't Don't think about the other one just to get about. You're just focused on this part of your body is like, just have it. Then go to your foot and then go to the other one and so on. You can do this. Reacher arms your feet and make your abdominal muscles. Okay. Just like you have just this muscles in your body and you learn how to relax them and how to control every muscle one at a time. So the cessation has to be that you're very heavy. You have a very heavy arm or very heavy feed, or you are just engaged here in your lower body and you get very heavy and relaxed right there. Okay, so this is the calming and relaxing feeling you have to have. So again, this exercise will help you connect yourself weaker muscles and being controlled off everything. You have to practice this in order to go stage and be able to control the part of your body . You feel it's best. Now the less exercise I want you to do is about feeling wear. Anxiety takes place and where all the negative emotions are placed in your body so that you can focus to get them out. Now, I wanted to be very grounded. That means that you have to stay very well with your feet on the ground very connected with the crown. So you feel your feet. You can do this balance so that you can feel that your fetus is really on the ground that you're very grounded. Now close your eyes and remember a very stressful situation. And remember that that feeling and try to locate the place in your body that the fear and anxiety is located. Now I guess it will be somewhere around here. I don't know. Maybe maybe somewhere else, maybe t or anywhere else. Now try to concentrate on that certain place where your anxiety is located and with relaxing and breeding. Try to get it out from there. Just try to get it out. Just imagine it goes out and out. Get it out of your mind now. Try to do this like very profound mental exercise because it's very effective and it will help you when you're on stage to very quickly locate the place the anxiety is and just get it out through mental command. Now please try to do these exercises as often as you can, because I promise you that you will be better on stage. If you have a very well controlled deep breathing, you will be able to focus on it and just get the anxiety out, and you will also get rid of stage fright through muscle realization and you will be happy to find out that mine is the one controlling your whole body and that you can get all your thoughts and your negative energy out just by connecting your mind with your This is all for today. Thanks for watching by. 5. Lesson 4: hello again and welcome to our last lesson in this lesson. I will tell you how he needs to react when you are on stage and get very anxious. So you have to remember everything river before. So if you're a stage and you just get very anxious and state fried gets over you, you just have to remember everything we've learned before. Just focus on your breathing. Do that and just let the music flow. Just focus on your breathing and say to yourself the key. You are in control of your own body and you don't have to let your body do everything it wants. Start shaking and everything. Just focus on your breathing and say to yourself, I can do this. I am in control of my own body. You can also remember the exercises about relaxing, relaxing your muscles. So try to relax your muscles in your body one at a time. Just your arms and your feet and everything. Relax everything and breed very deep and very in control. Also keep your inner positive dialogue so never say back. Thanks yourself. Don't see Oh my God, I cannot do this. Don't say that. It's very useful to remember everything we've talked before about letting all your negative thoughts out and just put yourself in a good like, say, good things yourself. So keep your inner dialogue positive. Okay? Don't Don't stress yourself with bad. Don't fool yourself with negative thoughts. Now, also, it is very important to feel grounded. What does that mean? Well, if you sit on a chair or something, just try to connect with the ground. So if you're sitting, just imagine yourself getting very connected to the ground so you have to feel connected in the year and shape. Just just try to concentrate on the connection with the chair and the chair on the ground. Okay, so this is all you have to think about greeting and ground. If you stand up, just balance yourself a little bit and focus on the feet on the ground and let the ground gives you balance and the call. Okay, just the effect off Grounding is great when you feel anxious. And another thing you can dio is just let all the things besides all the negative things beside anxiety and state, Fred, everything just let them away and imagine yourself being a very bright tube. So you're just a cube and life just flows in and out and you share with the audience the joy of music and the beauty of music. So you're just a very light tube. It doesn't matter that you don't have a perfect technique or you I made a mistake. It does matter your light your tube with light and you just give light to the others. So breathing very deeply and imagining light flows through your body and goes to everybody in the audience. So you have to be aware that you're sharing joy. Everything I've said in this lesson is about remembering the things we did before. So you have to practice everything about the calming process to be able to go on stage with a positive attitude. And if anxiety just comes without notice when you are on stage, go back to those feelings. Go back to those sensations to the muscle relaxation. Go back to your positive inner dialogue to the idea that you can if you want todavia that you are not the mistakes you make. You are somebody who is appreciated for the positive attitudes and not for a perfect technique or perfection. I hope this exercises will help you. I promise you that if you're calm and positive, you will enjoy music more and you will enjoy life itself more. This is all thanks for watching and the good luck in your musical journey by