Natural Cure for Stage Fright

by Kevin Pederson

Among the top fears of people, stage fright or fear of public speaking surpasses even sickness or flying. Many people would do anything to prevent speaking in front of a group and are overcome by panic in such a situation. Surprisingly, stage fright is not limited to us mere mortals. Professional actors, theater personalities, musicians and sportsmen may suffer from similar feelings of dread and apprehension before an appearance.

Stage fright not only causes a person to freeze up in front of a group but also makes a huge dent on a person’s self esteem and confidence. There are a number of cases where people have lost their jobs or stumbled down the career ladder because of this debilitating condition. Embarrassment about their feelings also leads many to keep this fear a secret and to suffer in silence.

Stages of Stage Fright

  • Stage 1: Known as the butterflies in your stomach stage, this is just the beginning of stage fright. Such low levels of anxiety prepare your body for action and many performers actually welcome such feelings of restlessness and nervousness.
  • Stage 2: During this stage, there is a physical manifestation of the feelings of fear. The person may find himself sweating profusely, feeling nauseas, experiencing a rapid heartbeat and literally getting weak in the knees. It is possible that these symptoms may affect a person’s performance and if not curbed in time could lead to more intense feelings of fear.
  • Stage 3: What follows is a full-blown anxiety attack. Stage 3 usually involves vomiting, fainting, and a lack of focus and feelings of extreme panic.
  • Stage 4: The final phase of stage fright is that of complete terror. In such a situation the person is unable to move or speak. If a person reaches this stage, medical or psychological intervention is recommended.
Is there a cure for stage fright?

If the feelings of stage fright and anxiety are too much for you, speak to your doctor about the possibility of medication. There are some drugs that may help reduce the symptoms of stage fright and increase your control of the situation. These include beta-blockers to prevent a rapid heartbeat and shakiness. However, there is no scientific evidence to prove the effectiveness of such medication to treat stage fright. In addition there are also side effects of the drugs to consider such as drowsiness and dizzy spells.

Many performers swear by herbal or natural remedies to combat stage fright. Tinctures of the herbs Skullcap or Valerian are said to help calm the nerves and reduce performance anxiety. There is also the belief that a deficiency of vitamins B and low levels of zinc and potassium can contribute towards anxiety and stress. Leading a healthy lifestyle and eating a nutrient-rich diet can go a long way towards bringing the body back in balance.

Tips to Overcome Stage Fright

There are ways to reduce stage fright. All it takes is determination and focus. Some simple tips to overcome your fear of public speaking are:

  • Reign in your Thoughts: Do not let your mind wander off and fill up with doubts and fears about what could go wrong. Focus your attention on the present moment and away from yourself.
  • Calm Down: Practice deep breathing techniques or even a small meditation break to slow down your rapid heart rate and calm your mind.
  • Visualize It: See yourself on the stage doing what you have to do. Look at the audience and imagine their appreciation. Build up this image until it becomes a reality.
  • Stay Healthy: Don’t eat too much before a performance as this may make you sluggish and less alert. Stay away from caffeine, alcohol and drugs as these only serve to create a false impression of security.
  • Accept the Truth: It’s ok to be you! So what if you are not the best speaker or actor in the house, the truth of the matter is that mistakes may happen but people rarely remember them for long.

Warning: The reader of this article should exercise all precautionary measures while following instructions on the home remedies from this article. Avoid using any of these products if you are allergic to it. The responsibility lies with the reader and not with the site or the writer.
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