What makes musicians special?
Studies have shown musicians are hypersensitive. It makes sense because in order to be an effective interpreter and communicator of the full range of human emotions, musicians need to keep open a channel or conduit at all times, despite life's traumas and difficulties such as abortion, divorce or bereavement. unlike an office worker who can suppress feelings for an inordinate length of time, when a musician suffers and emotional crisis, he/she can't hide it for long. The art of performing is to embody emotions in order to communicate with an audience. Sometimes in life those emotions can become overwhelming. Performance anxiety can hit you at any stage of your career. It is linked to the open channel of emotional expression you have worked so hard to maintain.
If you choose me as your counsellor, you will benefit from a unique insight into the challenges faced by performers from someone with 35 years' experience in the music business.
What it means to be a musician
I have worked behind the scenes of classical music as an agent, publisher, casting director and concerts manager. My experience has taught me that what distinguishes those clients who are musicians from the general population I also counsel is the heightened sensitivity, plus an ability to distill emotional experience into musical performance. An emotional crisis - and at the moment the industry itself is in crisis, causing financial worries as well as a loss of a sense of identity - can leave you feeling alone, exposed and vulnerable. The very act of lifting a violin or opening your larynx taps into the very seat of those emotions, releasing a torrent of feeling which can be overwhelming when you are struggling with issues which you can "process" using this form of talking therapy.
"My recovery is my prime focus right now. I've got a fantastic psychotherapist, Miranda who has been amazing for me." (Musician)
"I trust you, Miranda and I really benefitted from your work. I hope we can do more of it soon." (Author and raconteur)
Regain your composure
Musicians in crisis report physical symptoms suchs as aches, pains and stiffness and often an increase in performance anxiety. Many are referred for psychotherapy by physiotherapists or Alexander Technique practitioners. Others in mid-phrase hear the intrusive voice of a childhood teacher, telling them they will never be good enough to perform at the Carnegie Hall or Royal Opera House. Pianists suffer from memory loss, instrumental soloists feel as if they have shrunk in stature; singers feel flayed back to the bone when they stand on the stage. Nobody can see just how vulnerable you feel inside. I offer a safe space to process those feelings and the skills to manage them.
Containing and managing emotional expression
The Stimmung Therapy Programme which combines one-to-one trauma therapy with Mindfulness and the skills to help you manage the flow of your feelings offers you the chance to admit your vulnerability in a space where no one judges you. You are so much more than "only as good as your last performance," especially if that last performance was conducted close to tears or with the prop of alcohol or betablockers