Taking Chances

Nerves while we're adults, what it really is.



9/9/20212 min read

I guess I'd call myself an adrenaline junkie. As a kid, I'd crave, dream about riding the biggest, baddest roller coasters. It would be the best day ever when my Dad would take me boating or snowmobiling.

As I grew older and busier, my idea of an adrenaline trip was an audition or performance where I considered myself less than 100% ready. Adrenaline became an obligation and not a choice. Perhaps that's when my anxiety issues started.

Last month, I was talking to a lot of my music students about stage fright since we had our recital/competition. My biggest response to them was that stage fright isn't real.

Stage fright does not exist.

It is something someone once told us about, so it became a behavior we learned was acceptable, correct and expected. But it's not, or rather, doesn't have to be.

I cracked my stage fright the hard way. My senior recital in college was an hour of memorized piano music, mostly by myself. Nothing has been as difficult and as mentally taxing as that, ever. No other performance, no interview, no audition, nothing. My second and final stage fright cracking was my first Christmas play at St. Mary's where I was responsible for like 18 or so performances of 250 students. It was so logistically complex, the performances didn't rattle me- having it all go off in an organized fashion had me sleepless the night before! Nothing can ever be as difficult as those two scenarios.

Maybe as adults we don't really have to deal with as much with stage fright. Normally, we voluntarily put ourselves in that position, or our job description includes it sometimes.

But we can feel the same way when presented with a situation that makes us nervous because it's new.

Guaranteed there's someone out there right now that's worried about something new coming their way: tomorrow, this weekend, next week, next month. Something.

I'm literally trying to figure that out right now... I'm performing with Zuut this weekend at Music Is Art at Riverworks. We have about an hour block and I'm in 6 dances.


Yeah, that happened fast!

3 choreographed numbers (one I learned in 3ish rehearsals), a trio and ....

2 solos. One is a sword balancing choreo that is definitely potentially dangerous.

Holy whoa. So talk about taking chances!

But we all do it. We accept the challenge and the opportunity for the chance because we know it makes us stronger, more experienced, ready for the next step and overall feeling accomplished.

If you haven't taken a chance lately, especially one you should or want to, what's really stopping you? What's really there to be worried about? I guarantee that your reservations are literally something you were told that your mind just made up.

It's not real. All in your head.

That awesome opportunity is there for you to take. Grab and go. The other side is the better place to be!

Hope to see you there!