Did you know that most professional musicians – even well-known artists – struggle privately with pain and/or performance nerves, but most people don’t know because they hide it really well?
👉 For example, I once asked violinist Nadja Salerno-Sonnenburg (pictured below) how she prevents pain, and she admitted that she has to ice her arms every night. (!!)
👉 And the legendary violinist Nathan Milstein, who was my teacher for 5 summers, said his performance anxiety kept getting worse as he aged.
I find these stories particularly sad, because it can be so simple to prevent pain and performance anxiety, when you know how to harness the power of your mind in the very specific way that I teach, which is based on hands-free Alexander Technique. (I, for one, would definitely prefer that to icing my arms daily for the rest of my life!)
💧 Unfortunately, most musicians haven’t been taught how to tap into their natural mind-body connection and haven’t learned the self-care skills needed to relieve excess tension and easily prevent pain and performance anxiety.
💧 Even worse, many musicians were trained by teachers who actually instilled fear in their students, resulting in high levels of tension and anxiety, and even pain.
💧I’ve had SO many students tell me they had a teacher that terrorized them when they were young, to the point that they would shake just to go into a lesson, let alone play in front of an audience!
Sadly, physical pain and emotional challenges often go hand-in-hand.
Most musicians with pain or performance nerves eventually try out a hodgepodge of things in an attempt to get help. Anything from getting regular massage and chiropractic care for pain… to psychotherapy, deep breathing, or meditation for nerves.
Maybe you’ve tried some of those yourself?
Of course, all of those things have their merits (when done well). But none of them will get to the ROOT CAUSE of your pain or anxiety, because methods that focus on JUST the body, JUST the emotions, JUST the mind, or JUST the music… aren’t taking into account that you are a whole, integrated being, bringing your whole self to your instrument.
Every aspect of you is inter-connected, and intimately related to the specifics of how you move and how you actually approach, hold, and play your instrument.
Specialists are trained to see and focus on a small part of the picture, ignoring the rest.
Just as music teachers will primarily help you with your technique and musical expression, they rarely know how to help you deal with pain or fearful thoughts…
… so they send you to specialists – who, in turn, don’t understand how important it is to put your physical or emotional pain into the context of the unique, very personal way that you play, which is contributing to your pain and performance nerves.
💡 If you really want to heal your whole self in a way that isn’t just a temporary fix (sadly, even surgeries will often partially solve problems), you need to take a higher perspective, and look at the big picture of your whole self, including how you play.
Even though the top musicians are able to perform with incredible technical skill, passionate expression, and excellent stage presence, they still struggle because – like you…
they’re not fully aware of the interconnectedness of everything they do; and
they inevitably bring too much psychophysical tension to their playing.
If they – and you – were (1) aware of the subtle tension that creeps in when you’re unaware, and if (2) you knew how to undo that global tension in a way that would allow you to play without that added interference that blocks your best performance, causing discomfort, pain, and/or performance anxiety…
…well, then the sky would be the limit and you could finally feel free in mind, body, and spirit… and good about fulfilling your potential as an artist! 😊 🌈
Becoming aware of how you’re bringing too much tension to everything you do – with and without your instrument – and learning how to let go of it in a way that is under your precise control, so you can let go exactly when you need things to flow most – is THE surprising key to overcoming pain and performance anxiety. (It’s also the secret to effortless technique!)
It is truly NOT hard to learn how to do this, because it’s how the human mind-body-self is actually designed to function.
We are not designed to bring excess tension to everything we do! We are designed to become more and more fully aware, conscious, and in control of ourselves. We are made to choose EASE and FREEDOM at any moment, which takes us in the direction of healing and joy – and out of the bondage of pain and anxiety.
❤️🔥 I’ve created The Art of Freedom® Method, based on the principles of the Alexander Technique, to help you learn how to do what not even many of the top musicians know how to do, so that you can systematically free your mind, body, and music of everything that blocks you from fulfilling your artistic potential.
❤️🔥 In my six-week program, The Musician’s Mind-Body Breakthrough, I will teach you exactly what to do for a few minutes every day to help you heal, prevent pain, and overcome performance anxiety.
Your improvement is guaranteed – or your money back!
In the MMBB program, you’ll learn in three ways:
📝 Private instruction: 2 Private coaching sessions with me
📝 Home practice with The Musicians’ Advantage Jumpstart self-study course
📝 Optional group support: Live group sessions with me, plus a private Facebook group
This program is proven, extremely effective, and life-transforming. It delivers my signature system, The Art of Freedom® Method for conscious living and masterful artistry, which is based on the principles of the Alexander Technique, in a way that is highly empowering and confidence-building for the student.
The skills I’m sharing are easy to learn, easy to implement, and designed for busy musicians with crazy schedules like you, who don’t have a lot of time to waste.
The next session begins January 15, so message me today to see if this program is right for you or email me at Jennifer@ArtofFreedom.me for details. I look forward to chatting with you soon!
p.s. Just reach out now and ask me for more info! 🙂
What students say…
“I LOVED this program! With Jennifer’s gifted and generous guidance, this program has led me to a big change in my attitude towards the way I play my flute. That change has been noticeable to others. I am increasingly able to play with more ease and positivity and success towards my goals. The techniques I have been introduced to and have been practicing have also impacted other parts of my physical, emotional and spiritual life in uplifting ways. I only wish I had started this technique sooner! Jennifer is an amazing teacher and I have received priceless instruction and support. I am thrilled to have had Jennifer’s help. What she has to offer is invaluable!”
~ Kelly Erikson, Flute
“The best thing I’ve done.”
~ Stephanie Michele Ruddy, Violin