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Is Your Backstage Ritual Working For You? Try These 3 Things!

backstage rituals belief
Backstage Preparing for a performance

You’re about to enter your performance arena. Your heart is pounding, your hands are shaky, and you’re thinking, “yikes… is my mouth starting to go dry?” We see you, we've been there, and we get it.

What if we told you that moment before you step into your performance doesn’t have to be full of questions or scary symptoms? What if you could transform your backstage time into a comforting and empowering ritual? These three backstage objectives from team Fearless Performance will help you transition into a performance-ready state of certainty, so you can take your best shot at getting the results you seek.

PERFORM A SELF CHECK-IN 

Is it just us or is Apple Maps pretty good now??! 

No matter what navigation app you use, you always need two pieces of info to get to where you want to go: your starting location and your destination.

Backstage before a performance, we can spend a LOT of time hoping we arrive at our performance “destination,” …the result we want!! :) But to get there, we must know from where we’re starting.

Make it an objective during your backstage ritual to get a clear sense of your starting place. You can do that with a simple self check-in. Are you calm and focused? Do you need to do some breathwork or meditation?

Your starting place includes all the skills and experiences you’re bringing into your performance, too!  So, take a mental inventory. Relive successful moments, remind yourself how much you’ve prepared (not just for this, but over a lifetime!) and draw forth your capabilities.

This will prime your mind with moments you’ve performed well and what you have to offer your audience, so you can feel way more certain you have everything you need to get to where you want to go.

GET THE LAY OF THE LAND

At the beginning of the pandemic, Katy was convinced the “share screen” button on Zoom was rigged.  It seemed to magically disappear the second she needed it! Of course, we know there's no magic happening there. Magic tricks are better left in Jeff's hands than on Zoom, anyway :)

The truth of it is, when we feel anxious, our perceptual field narrows. We can run into all kinds of issues. Vanishing buttons… lost car keys that turn up on the counter in front of us…

During your backstage ritual, you can account for this natural narrowing by making it a point to get the full picture of your performance situation. In what hall are you about to perform? What music are you about to play? How are you going to stay focused on the process of performing moment by moment? What common ways might your performance run awry, and how are you going to respond in a calm manner? (We like to think of it as performing an optimal reset!)

Whatever lies ahead, visualize it as vividly as you can. Imagine yourself performing perfectly. Fill your mind with beautiful, expressive phrases that tell the story you want to share with your audience.

If you familiarize yourself with the situation you’re about to walk into and imagine yourself performing well no matter what happens, it will help ready your mind and body to perform to your best ability.

DECIDE YOU ARE ENOUGH 

Will you step into your next performance feeling that you have enough and that you are enough?

When you’re standing backstage before a performance, the amount of hours you’ve practiced doesn’t get to decide the answer to that question. Your audition committee doesn’t get to decide. Your audience doesn’t get to decide.

You decide.

So decide! After you’ve taken inventory of yourself and your performance situation, you have all the information you need. Spoiler: the answer is a big, resounding, YES!!! It MUST be.

During your backstage ritual, it’s your job to get to a point where you can answer yes and believe it. Any other answer leads to self-doubt and diminished execution. After the performance, you can go practice more, learn more, sleep more, hydrate more, etc. But in this moment, your job is to pull up any memories, beliefs, affirmations, deep whys... annnnyyyything that will help you decide you are enough for this performance.

You’ll never know if you had enough to give unless you gave it all you've got, yeah!? Make the decision an easy yes for your audience by making it for yourself, first. 

BUILD YOUR BACKSTAGE RITUAL

There you have it! Our three objectives to hit to help you get your self-belief surging, transition into a state of performance-readiness, and feel confident you are enough for the task in front you. You now have the template to create your own a backstage ritual that will give you your best shot at getting the results you seek. Let’s get creating, eh?! 

 

 

 

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