Performance Anxiety

To start, this has nothing to do with sport at all…I just had a realization and felt the need to share it.

My daughter has a beautiful singing voice. She loves to dance. She went through a stage where she sang and danced her way through the day. She can often be found in her room singing and dancing. She says she wants to be a performer when she is older. However, when we suggest she take dance, acting classes at our local theater, or participate in her school’s performing arts program, she is steadfast in her answer, which is a big N-O.

It is very frustrating for Matt and I because we really don’t want fear to hold her back from participating in something that could potentially be very rewarding for her. It was while I was belting out “Stay” by Rhianna in my car that I had an epiphany:

I am one of the directors of the play this year and at our last meeting we were discussing the group song. We picked it out and then the question was posed, “Who is going to teach the kids?” meaning who is going to sing it with/for the kids. It was suggested that I do it. I immediately said, “No. I don’t sing.” 

Sunshine happened to be in the room and she said, “Yes you do. You sing all the time.” My neighbor/friend also said, “Yes you do. I have video proof of it.” To which I replied that I didn’t think it would be a good thing for me to knock back a couple vodka tonics before heading over to the school. 

I used to sing in public. I was in chorus growing up. I used to get up on stage with my dad’s band and sing back-up with my sister. I have even been known to belt out Janis Joplin after a couple vodka tonics. I love to sing…I am just afraid to perform.

My point is, is that the fear that Sunshine has is the same fear I have. Maybe my wanting her to overcome it is a way for me to overcome my fear. My goal from the very beginning was to be a better role model for my daughter. With that in mind, I will show Sunshine that I can overcome my fear and get up there and sing for the kids tomorrow…hopefully with a little help from my friends.

p.s. Feel free to apply this to sport or anything else you are afraid of.

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