Testimonials of People Who Overcame Stage Fright Performance Anxiety
Here Are Some
Testimonials of People Who Overcame Stage Fright Performance Anxiety As a Result of Working With Me
On Their Stage Fright, Self Confidence, Focus and Other Issues That Entertainers, Performers, Musicians, Comedians, Athletes and Sometimes Even "normal people" Need Help With.
Most of them are stories about musicians and entertainers who I helped who had stage fright / performance anxiety. Some are non show business people. Either way, you should read them and then ask yourself how I might apply what I do to help YOU in YOUR own unique situation. I have intentionally left off names and any hints as to who these people are.
My name is Chris Cady and I have been a Stage Hypnotist and hypnotherapist for many years now but between 2008 and 2011 I had an ongoing run in a performing arts center theater in Reno NV and at the Horizon Hotel Casino in S. Lake Tahoe. I also perform all over the planet for audiences of all sizes.
During the time of my ongoing shows, ( and even now) many musicians and other entertainers and their crew came to see my show. Creative people are always interested in hypnosis so after every show they would want to, "hang out" and they would
frequently ask about using hypnosis for themselves to work on some form of stage fright or performance anxiety or other issues that are idiosyncratic to entertainers, artists and to people who work in in show business who always have to “bring it” and be 100% at every show or recording session and who live and work in close proximity to each other for long periods of time (not necessarily by choice). I should mention that they also usually have all sorts of unhealthy habits or unusual beliefs about things.
While most of the issues that the musicians / entertainers wanted to work on were regarding
stage fright / performance anxiety, recording fright and self confidence and pressure / stress and creative issues both on stage and off, (which I will discuss here)
There were other issues as well:
Some of my clients only had "challenges" that were only a problem in certain venues or situations such as performing outdoors vs performing indoors, performing in a small venue vs a large one. Being able to sleep well on an airplane or a tour bus and not being irritated or startled awake by certain noises and announcements made on airplanes and at airports. Some had claustrophobia or felt claustrophobic on planes, buses vans, boats etc and I used hypnosis to help them so that they could use less or even zero alcohol... Staying patient with other band or cast members who irritated them, being able to nap in a dressing room or in an airport, not being bothered by the smell of diesel fuel that gets into clothing while living on a tour bus. (Your average person never faces these problems because they are unique to entertainers.)
Then of course there were entertainers who needed help not smoking or drinking or using drugs while still being surrounded by it. Musicians would have requests and concerns like
"I want to or need to stop smoking / drinking but I'm surrounded by musicians and crew and other people who smoke and drink 24 / 7. How can I stop in this situation?"
I would help them quit or at least reduce, under these challenging circumstances.
Being able to ignore other people who smoke or drink or wear certain fragrances or tolerate listening to music that other people love but that they hate, not getting tired of their own music night after night...
staying positive despite profound fatigue and pressure.
Then there are other issues of course: younger less seasoned musicians or actors who have fear of auditioning for bands, choirs, competitions, plays, TV shows, movies, special schools programs etc. I used hypnosis with them to "flip off" all their fear and self doubt and SWITCH ON CONFIDENCE.
Since using your No Stage Fright For Guitar Players CD I have jammed with friends and have felt no stage fright or butterflies or anything -
Now I can just play. So thanks a million!"
From Paralyzed With FEAR To Playing Guitar With CONFIDENCE!
Here is a testimonial from a guitar player who got my stagefright program after a frightening failure experience on stage! Every musician should read this true story!
(Note: I edited it down from several pages.)
"My name is (name removed) Since using your No Stage Fright For Guitar Players CD I have jammed with friends and have felt no stage fright or butterflies or anything -
Now I can just play. So thanks a million!"
Now here is the back story so that you know why I purchased your overcome stage fright for guitar players program.
I have been playing guitar for about 20 years on and off in a bunch of small bars and the like and in the mid 90's my band got to open for Steppenwolf. Cool right?
The band that I was in was called (name removed) we were a very punk indie band and I didn't realize that we were walking onstage at a major festival with a crowd of about 1,000 bikers. We cranked up and stopped the whole crowd beer tents and all. I almost passed out. Suddenly the sky was a sea of beers and we were soaked in Coors and Bud Light.
Since that show, if I play for more than just a few people (especially other musicians) I freeze up and I'm taken back to that day opening for Steppenwolf where we dropped 1,000 jaws at once, in a bad way... my pulse will race and I'll start to fumble, and I'll get nervous enough to where I want to puke.
Recently I've been asked to join bigger bands playing for large crowds. I'm a good guitar player but I just get all butterflied up and turn away from the audience. I'd like to play again without freezing up. That's why I bought your stage fright program.
Now here are the results after 2 weeks.
Since using your No Stage Fright For Guitar Players CD I have jammed with friends and have felt no stage fright or butterflies or anything -
Now I can just play. So thanks a million!"
(name band and city removed)
was ( and is) a major issue too as was getting into the right mind set to "stay professional" and step out onto stage and give 110% EVERY NIGHT despite having a personal life that was chaotic and turbulent.
Here are a few stories about musicians and entertainers who I helped who had stage fright / performance anxiety
In order to respect their privacy I have removed their names and the names of their band:
OVERCOMING STAGE FRIGHT FOR A BUSINESS EXECUTIVE / COMPANY PRESIDENT WHEN GIVING SPEECHES.
A successful and seemingly confident business executive came to me who told me that he felt as confident as a Military General until he got near a microphone.
Then his knees would shake and his voice would tremble. It was the only time he ever felt weak, fearful and insecure. He knew that it was not congruent with being the strong leader of a company and he wanted to fix it. I hypnotized him and took him through my special process for eliminating fear of public speaking and had him stand on my stage and give several speeches over a mic while powerful music played in the background and I got him to connect feelings of POWER AND CONFIDENCE with the microphone. I got him to feel that a microphone was his special leadership weapon (after all he hold me he wanted to feel like a General when using a mic and giving a speech) and that he only amplified his POWER and not any weakness. His stage fright went away and he speaks powerfully and confidently.
FOR A PROFESSIONAL GUITAR PLAYER
A guitar player came to me with stage fright. He felt that his solos were weak and not well received and that he was awkward with his movement on stage. He said that he felt like a dork. He also felt like the audience was scrutinizing him instead of listening and enjoying the music. I hypnotized him and got him to just channel the music and let his body move with the groove and to just share his gift of music with the audience. While hypnotized he grabbed his guitar and played for me quite beautifully. We walked all over the stage right up to the edge of the stage and imaginatively looked at each seat one at a time, imaginatively looking into the eyes of each audience member and smiling and radiating love all while playing guitar. Just feeling and radiating positive energy and letting his body move however the music made it as opposed to trying to choreograph a movement routine. I then pumped him full of hypnotic suggestions which were more like commands for feeling confidence and power and joy while on stage. He reported that the next time his band performed he was not self-conscious and instead he felt relaxed, “in the groove” and like he had a commanding confidence and was extremely confident and blissful and he performed with
zero stage fright.
Guitar Hero / Guitar Player Player From the 70's / 80s Stuck In A Rut:
I had a hypnosis show in the San Francisco Bay Area and after the show, while I was greeting the audience a teenage boy and his friend approached me and one of them reminded me that a year earlier right after the show I had hypnotized his friend to play better golf.
His friend golfed that day and golfed better than ever, completely focused, in the zone etc.
I wish I remembered his score but I don't. I only remember that is was remarkable. I was not a bit surprised that he had this result because great golf requires focus and relaxation and I have hypnotized many golfers who have had great results. ( I also sell a remarkable CD for this and get wonderful letters from these golfers so I'm quite accustomed to this feedback.)
Based on this experience, this young man wanted to use hypnosis for help musically. So he told me that he and his dad were both musicians and guitar players and he wanted to know if I could hypnotize them to be more creative and to take creative chances and to progress in their guitar playing.
He also said that his dad was a rock musician and was musically stuck in a rut. I agreed to help and he called his father and I spoke with him. He only told me his first name and based on the way that he spoke to me, I assumed he was in a local San Francisco Bay Area “bar band.”
Boy was I wrong!
He invited me to come and hypnotize them at their house which was also their home studio. It turned out this musician / guitar player was from a well known 70's, 80's rock band. He told me that he had not played with other musicians or played live in a long time because he felt that he was not good anymore and that anyone who saw him live would be disappointed that he had digressed in his guitar playing.
Among other things he talked about being stuck in the same sound and the same guitar solo since 1982.
I remember that he said that when he played guitar he would just automatically get fearful and play only in the same scale or same sound instead of experiment musically even though he only had an audience of one.
He also told me that he felt that he was kind of a fraud and that he thought he was, “like Greg Brady who only got the job playing guitar because he, “fit the costume.” It was odd that I actually remembered that episode of the Brady Bunch. But "in a nutshell" he told me that he felt like he was not really a qualified musician.
I hypnotized him and his son and took away all his fathers beliefs that he had to be the same "rock star" and the same guitar player and the same type of musician that he was in the 70's and 80's and I took away his fear of not being talented enough and to be open and inspired to evolve musically and to move forward.
I got them both to just focus and be in the moment and to be empowered to experiment and to FEEL that their guitars and their musical sessions were for musical experiments instead of just reproducing old known songs and known sounds. I also used a wonderful show business expression that I love,
" LEAP AND THE NET WILL APPEAR!"
Well suddenly they started playing all sorts of weird music that sounded like something that a jazz musician or Frank Zappa or the Grateful Dead or Phish would play. Then he and his son challenged each other to a guitar duel and played their own very bizarre version of “Dueling Banjos”
which we called,
“Hypnotic Dueling Banjos of Burning Man”
Then while still hypnotized I got him to pull up some videos on youtube of some jazz fusion guitar players and just start playing something similar. They both did this. Then I gave them very strong hypnotic suggestions for feeling worthy, confident, fearless and LOVED and open to music experimentation and to going out and playing with other musicians and to write and record experimentally and non judge mentally.
He is writing and playing again. He actually plays guitar at jam nights and with other musicians.
Here is a testimonial from a NEW
Note: the comedian dictated this to me verbally and I typed it and edited a some of the words for written sentence structure:
“I Met Hypnotist Chris Cady after I completed a stand up comedy class. Everyone said that I was funny but I was TERRIFIED of going on stage for the first time.
Chris hypnotized me so that I would refocus my overwhelming thoughts of failure into thoughts of total confidence, SUCCESS and love. I work in a conservative job and my co-workers were coming to this show and I was tormented by a fear that I might "bomb" and humiliate myself in front of them.
Chris helped me "switch off" these fears. One of the things that he had me do was stand on stage and just picture my husband siting in the audience smiling back at me and radiating love. Then feeling that love spread all over the audience.
Then I recited my act. I felt confident.
After our session I was so relaxed and filled with confidence that I could not wait to get on stage and rehearse again. This was the first time I felt really good and confident about my first ever attempt at writing and performing a comedy routine. So I went back to the stage and recited my act again but this time instead of standing with my hands in my pockets and feeling anxious. I felt empowered.
Then at my first, show which was the graduating night for the class. I left my house feeling relaxed and confident. I arrived at the show early sat in the dressing room and calmly practiced. I noticed that most of the other student comics were nervously pacing, drinking or looking anxious, but not me. Then just before I was called out on stage I did what Chris told me while I was hypnotized and all I can say was WOW!
I FELT LIKE SUPERWOMAN! All of my thoughts and words flowed perfectly and the audience laughed and laughed and laughed! What's really interesting is that I don't even remember seeing an audience even being there. It seemed like only my husband was there n the theater smiling back at me.
( Name withheld by request)
Stage Fright / Performance Anxiety
and Making Eye Contact With The Audience:
Many entertainers or public speakers get significant anxiety if they make eye contact with an audience member by mistake and that person is yawning or making a facial expression that does not reflect fun or interest or enjoyment in whatever the entertainer is doing saying or singing at the time.
So if a musician , entertainer, public speaker, comedian looks into the audience and notices a guy looking bored with his arms across his chest, sees someone yawning, looking down into their purse. Sipping a drink, getting up to use the restroom, putting gum into their mouth, sees someone whispering into their companions ear, texting or on the telephone etc. Suddenly the performers mind starts to hallucinate a million negative things about why that person is doing this behavior and they feel injured in some way and then they get "thrown off: and lose focus.
As a result, most entertainers have all sorts of techniques to look in the general direction of the audience, throw their eyes out of focus and avoid eye contact.
I used to do this as well ( I'd focus on the exit sign above the back door).
These days I welcome eye contact and I show my clients how to embrace eye contact and smiles and how to reinterpret all facial expressions, and audience behaviors so that it supports and empowers you instead of throwing you off.
In the case of a comedian, public speaker or a singer, I show them how to use this in your act.
STAGE FRIGHT: Fear of the Merchandise Booth
Most musicians or artists seem to have an uncomfortable relationship with money and selling their art. Even though they need to sell merchandise to survive they seem to feel diminished by being involved with the sale, or any sort of pitch for the product.
A musician in a very well known band from the 80s came to me with a different form of stage fright. He said that because of the state of the music business they now relied on touring and after show merchandise sales these days in order to pay the bills. In-order to boost after show merchandise sales, It was expected that every band member sit at the merchandise table and sign autographs and take photos. Only he HATED IT and was terrified of it. He told me that every ounce of him was uncomfortable and he couldn't understand why he was so uncomfortable because these were fans and they were all happy people. He told me that he was never nervous about performing in front of thousands of people but only about going to the merchandise booth and he felt like a total loser in the booth. He would frequently get sick on the way to the booth or have to have slam a few beers first and really talk himself into it.
I hypnotized him and while hypnotized he told me that he felt like being in a souvenir booth this made them look desperate and was beneath him and also opened him up to being ridiculed or seen as less of a star. He also said it made him feel like a minimum wage clerk in a souvenir stand.
I got him to emotionally understand that he had to accept this and that selling tour merchandise is just another way to connect with his fans and that that not doing this meant giving up performing and getting a day job and working in a store and sell other peoples merchandise. This was a significant motivator for him. Then I got him to relax and let go and FEEL being in the merchandise booth as a pleasurable way to get paid to hang out with fan/friends. While someone else did the selling and dealt with the money. I also got him to emotionally accept that while in the merchandise booth he was just doing another form of performing and that he was actually enhancing the lives of his fans because they would remember this as a special experience. Things got better and he told me that he feels very relaxed and comfortable and actually enjoys being at the merchandise table now and sees it as FUN.
STAGE FRIGHT AND A CLASSICAL PIANO PLAYER
An accomplished very well known classical piano player who to my chagrin, I had unfortunately never heard of, arrived in Reno a few days before his show. He knew someone who knew me and we, “comped” him into my show. I knew nothing about him. Its just kind of an unofficial show business policy to “comp” entertainers to shows.
What Is important to this story is that during my comedy hypnosis show, I do a really funny routine where I tell my hypnotized volunteers that they are world famous concert piano players who play the world's biggest widest baby grand piano. I tell them to play piano with poise, mastery, style, great confidence etc.” The volunteers always sit up straight and then stand tall, looking VERY confident, well poised etc, then I have them play this imaginary piano in a variety of funny positions. The volunteers always play their imaginary pianos in all these positions but they perform with confidence and poise and then bow with a commanding
confidence. The routine is very well received and hilariously funny.
What Is important to this story is that after this show, the REAL concert piano player and I hung out a bit and he commented to me about how remarkably confident the hypnotized piano players were and how they really owned the stage especially when they accepted the applause and bowed. Then he told me that he wished he could feel and look as confident when he played and bowed as they looked. I was surprised by this. He told me that even though he knew he played beautifully and felt comfortable playing in front of an audience. He felt sheepish, and scared and that he hated walking across the stage to and from the piano and again standing up to accept applause because he was no longer protected by his piano. He then told me that he consciously and intellectually knew that an audience at a symphony is not going to throw anything at him or hurt him or boo. But he emotionally felt like they might or that he would feel worried, afraid, vulnerable, like somehow that applause would not be loud enough and he would feel bad and embarrassed. He told me that sitting behind the piano was the only time that he really felt comfortable and confident and that his piano playing made up for his social short comings. He told me that he would love to feel confident when he played but especially when he stood and bowed. He wanted the confidence of a ROCK STAR but the grace of a ballet dancer. However he felt timid and apprehensive. So that's what we worked on. Feeling INVINCIBLY CONFIDENT, poised, and feeling fueled by the audience.
I hypnotized him in my theater for relaxing and confidence and then we went to the theater where his piano was. Under hypnosis I had him walk across the stage as if he were SUPERMAN. Then I had him take a bow as if he were a body builder. I had him stride to his piano then walk gracefully as if he were this muscle bound superman type guy who also played piano. Then he played piano beautifully and I applauded. I had him come out from behind his piano and stand tall and proud and confident and imagine the applause and FEEL the applause and let it fuel him with confidence so that he felt love and empowered instead of apprehensive and fearful. He did so and I could see an immediate improvement in his posture and overall body language as we walked all over the stage together with pride. Then through each row of the theater and the lobby standing tall as if he were a king in a parade. He stood so tall and so proud that he looked like a statue of himself as a taller proud musician.
Everything got better for him. He played his piano again and we repeated the process. He looked and felt 100% confident, very dominant, very proud and he actually radiated charisma and he had what I call an, “artists glow.”
The next night was his concert. I had my own show or I would have attended so I told him to contact me around 11pm after both of our shows.
So he called me and we met up. He looked, like a new man. He told me that using my techniques, the moment he stepped on stage he stepped into a dream. He felt like the music was more clear and crisp and that he played beautifully the way that he knew that he was capable. He said that every time he received applause that he felt wonderful and confident while standing for it and receiving it and feeling the love from the audience instead of feeling vulnerable and like standing and bowing was just something the he HAD to do. He said that he imagined that the tales of his tuxedo was a cape. Then he said that the strangest thing happened. He said that at the end of the performance when he stood to take his bow, he actually walked out from behind the piano and took his bow and felt so happy that instead of just focusing his attention on the balcony banisters and avoiding eye contact with the audience he smiled and felt like he was looking directly into the eyes of each audience member and then he felt so happy that he spontaneously did a slight dance that he described as a bit of an irish jig meets a James Brown move. He said that people laughed and really enjoyed it. He told me that he felt a euphoria and internal bliss that was off the charts. 3 Days later he called me to say that he still felt euphoric.
Side note: In my comedy hypnosis show I have my volunteers do an Irish jig and they also do a James Brown dance. So I guess it just felt right to him.
After this experience he told me that his playing improved, he continued to feel confident on stage and he also improved his social skills because he was more confident with himself in social situations and that he just doesn't need to hide behind the piano.
FEAR OF DOING AUTOGRAPH / MEET AND GREETS AND IN-STORE RECORD APPEARANCES
A country musician told me that he had refused to do make appearances in record stores or special events because he felt very uncomfortable having has fans so up close at an autograph table and taking pictures etc. he felt like he was going to have a panic attack. He also did not feel comfortable with all of the small talk. So I hypnotized him just to relax and to feel confident and secure. Immediately he was able to enjoy autograph tables and meet and greets and record store appearances.
There are more stories and testimonials from musicians that I have posted on the individual page for each individual stage fright program and other stories that I will post later here when time permits. If you have read them I just want you to understand that your own issue is not so "wild" and unusual. So chances are that I can help you fix your stage fright or performance anxiety issue too.
I'm Chris Cady
For me the Stage Is the Most Comfortable Place In The World.