How to Overcome Performance Anxiety

Whether it occurs on stage or in everyday interactions, performance anxiety can significantly interfere with your life. Luckily, this anxiety is treatable, but the best course of treatment depends on your particular set of circumstances. Keep reading to discover some tips on how to deal with performance anxiety.

Know Your Triggers

Performance anxiety is a sudden and overwhelming panic that occurs before an important performance. While the word “performance” can be taken quite literally when it comes to stage fright, it also can apply to other situations characterized by pressure to succeed. For example, you can feel performance anxiety before:

  • A sports event
  • A test
  • An interview
  • A sexual encounter

Since multiple situations can trigger performance anxiety, the first step is identifying the context that causes your symptoms. Isolating the trigger gives you valuable insight into your psyche and represents the first step in beating performance anxiety.

Devise a Plan

After pinpointing what has caused your performance anxiety, it’s time to devise a plan to reduce its symptoms. The plan is highly contextual and depends on your personality and problem-solving skills.

For example, if you tend to get nervous during a sexual encounter, ask for verbal cues from your partner. If you’re worried about making it to an interview or exam on time, get an early start and arrive at the premises an hour before the set time. This way, you’ll avoid worrying about the traffic and have enough time to compose yourself before the interview or the exam starts.

Talk to a Professional

If you feel like you can’t manage performance anxiety on your own, don’t hesitate to talk to a therapist. Depending on your situation, they might recommend talk therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, or simple meditation.

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