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Author Topic: Performers, artists, musicians with anxiety, panic, etc...  (Read 171 times)

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Offline elliotferguson

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Performers, artists, musicians with anxiety, panic, etc...
« on: March 21, 2014, 02:58:38 PM »
Hey guys

I'm new to this forum so bear with me, i've never actually used a forum in my life so I'm not quite familiar with the ins and outs of it just yet!

I'll start with a very melted down version of my story, I am an 18 year old musician and have been suffering from pretty debilitating anxiety and panic since around June 2013, it has had a massive impact on my life and career, I can safely say since my first panic attack not one day goes by without me brooding over it, and with anxiety being a very self-perpetuating condition, this has made it much, much worse.

With being a musician who frequently plays live in a band, having anxiety is a very very difficult thing to deal with and there has been points in my life where I have had the opportunity to perform with very well-known acts which to most people without anxiety, would be amazing! However to me, at the time I would much rather not do it and go out and get a normal job!

I was wondering if there are any other musicians or any kind of live performers or artists on the forum who also suffer from it as I do, and if so, share some of your experiences (both positive and negative) so we can share tips and tricks on how to deal with it?

Much love,
Elliot x  ;D
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Offline Cuchculan

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Re: Performers, artists, musicians with anxiety, panic, etc...
« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2014, 05:32:01 PM »
Welcome to the forum. Good to have you as a member. Here you are with like minded people. People who understand. As we all suffer from something or other. So feel free to ask any questions. Our members are always willing to help others out. Good chatroom too. 3 posts to enter the room.

Find the correct section of the forum that suits your condition and create a new topic on it. This is just a welcome section. Never really get the same amount of help in this section as you would on the other sections of the forums. So whatever one suits the questions you are asking. Get much better answers.
All users of the chatroom must be 18 years old or over. The room is off limits to anybody under the age of 18.

Possibly 10 posts to enter chat at the moment.
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The Lovable Irish Rogue

Online e77

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Re: Performers, artists, musicians with anxiety, panic, etc...
« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2014, 06:15:59 PM »
I believe this is a much more common condition in the music industry than people let on because of the stigma attached to it.  I have read about famous entertainers like Barbara Streisand, John Mayer, Carly Simon who struggle with the same issues.  Learn as much as you can about anxiety/panic and demystify the condition for yourself. Some entertainers use beta blockers and/ or benzodiazepines to calm down on stage.  Work with a doctor on this and follow the doctor's recommendations.  Don't mix with alcohol, weed or other drugs as the combinations can be harmful to you.  Diet and exercise and getting good sleep very important too.  Try to stay away from stimulants like caffeine as that can really amp you up.  Work with a therapist to learn techniques to counter the panic.  To be playing at that level at such a young age means you must be very talented and I hope the anxiety and panic doesn't derail your career.  This is a condition that can be managed.  Best wishes.
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Offline elliotferguson

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Re: Performers, artists, musicians with anxiety, panic, etc...
« Reply #3 on: March 22, 2014, 06:13:52 AM »
I very much agree with you there, many people in the industry who I have came across also suffer from it very badly which does make me feel better knowing that it is not just me! As for your suggestions about beta-blockers, back in october/november last year I did get prescribed propranalol (however you spell it  :P) but I only took it for two days as I found taking a substance that affected me physically in any way severely increased my anxiety. I fond acupuncture and cycling to be extremely helpful, although now that I feel that I am on top of it a bit more nowadays I am considering going back to beta-blockers and trying again. Last time I was that paranoid and anxious that I thought the beta-blockers were going to make my heart race slow down to a fatal rate! Thankyou for your reply,

Big love,
Elliot  :bigsmile:
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Online e77

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Re: Performers, artists, musicians with anxiety, panic, etc...
« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2014, 11:56:41 AM »
I take a beta blocker, metoprolol, and also worried about the slow heart rate.  Went down to low 50s and high 40s at one time.  My doctor advised me not to be concerned as my dose is low.  So far so good and have been taking it for a couple of years.  I do feel body changes, i.e. Heart rate changes or an occasional skip, fatigue but it is temporary and passing.  If you take it daily and decide to stop do it gradually and under doctors advice as you could have a rebound effect until the body gets used to functioning without the drug.  Unfortunately all meds have side effects so you weigh the pros and cons for using it.
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Offline baytownuser321

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Re: Performers, artists, musicians with anxiety, panic, etc...
« Reply #5 on: March 23, 2014, 10:16:06 PM »
WOW....this is exactly the reason I logged on to this community....I am a musician also...however, I am a music teacher and am responsible for putting on large productions involving elementary age children!  I've been doing it 20 years and this year it's like I am having anxiety attacks and meltdowns!
My temper is outrageous!  I just get sooooo frustrated!  I just want to quit! 
The program went fine and I do feel some relief....but I am really concerned about my future!

What do you do to cope with the pressure!  I don't feel the anxiety would be such a problem if there was not so much pressure to get little kids to perform! It feels like herding cats sometimes!
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Offline elliotferguson

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Re: Performers, artists, musicians with anxiety, panic, etc...
« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2014, 08:41:27 AM »
I don't really consciously deal with it, it's very strange.
For example one show I will play I will be on the brink of a meltdown and another I will feel great, it comes down to a range of factors that are all specific to you personally, obviously because we are all different.
For me however; exercise is KEY!

The natural endorphin's that are released when you exercise (particularly cardiovascular eg. cycling) are extremely relieving when I am feeling anxious so I'd really recommend giving that a go!
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