It is quite common for performers to experience stage fright. The curtain opens, the spotlight shines down and the audience members’ eyes and ears are open. However, when the time comes to act, unforeseen obstacles can get in one’s way. Sometimes, paralyzing feelings of pressure and anxiety can overflow and bear down on a person’s ability to perform, even if he or she has demonstrated amazing talent. Under the more clinical classification of performance anxiety, the condition can not only negatively affect one’s career but it can also their self-esteem and self-confidence.
For many aspiring athletes, musicians and other entertainers, this phenomenon can drastically change a person’s future plans if he or she cannot overcome it. This can be especially true with actors and actresses who have to endure a constant series of auditions. But what happens to the performers who have “made it” big? Do these psychological barriers magically disappear? Does a successful film ease the anxiety?
Over the years, the relationship between big names in acting and anxiety-related disorders has been prevalent. But for many of them, anxiety has been an issue that they tend to keep private. Although presenting themselves to audiences is primarily their job, skyrocketing to fame can have serious ramifications that their fans may be unaware of.
One actress decided she wouldn’t let this condition hold her back anymore. Emma Stone, best known for her successful films such as “The Help” and “Birdman”, publicized her struggle with anxiety in 2012. When the condition struck her at eight years old, a future of becoming an actress may have been a distant dream due to debilitating panic attacks.
In an interview with People Magazine, Stone stated, “I was just kind of immobilized by it… I didn’t want to go to my friends’ houses or hang out with anybody and nobody really understood.”
Fortunately for Stone, a healthy combination of consistent therapy and a direction towards laughter had mounting effects on her confidence and capabilities through adolescence. At age 14, she even found the courage to drop out of high school and pursue an acting career full-time. Stone now accepts Screen Actors Guild awards and publicizes other advocacy for certain organizations in her spare time. Her particular case teaches the importance of finding multiple treatments for one’s mental setbacks and being able to overcome the obstacles.
Often times, there is not a single solution that can remedy a disorder. Most people with mental conditions say that a carefully-planned combination of treatments, services and support is very effective for the recovery process. It is also helpful to remember that the combination of treatment options depends on the type of mental illness, the severity of symptoms, the availability of plans and decisions perceived by the individual, often in consultation with their healthcare provider and other locally-based treatment centers.
Moreover, Stone’s case highlights the utmost importance of treating anxiety-related disturbances early in one’s life. Overall, unidentified and untreated mental health disorders can mean the loss of critical developmental years and can lead to youth suicide or school failure. It can also lead to involvement with the juvenile justice and criminal justice systems, which can cause additional negative effects as time goes on. It is vital that serious instances connected to mental health disorder are addressed and treated before a crashing wave of collateral damage catches up with someone in adulthood. Statistics show that ten percent of children and adolescents in the United States suffer from serious emotional and mental disorders that cause significant functional impairment in their day-to-day lives at home, in school and with peers. The question is how much of an effect there would be on society if all of them were able to get the help they need to deal with these issues.
Many people suffer from anxiety-related disorders each day, but there is a much smaller collection of individuals who have the ability to publicize the issue and increase awareness on a much larger scale. Also, not only does making the issue known empower the individual, but it also inspires countless others to take action against their own struggles. If you or a loved one is dealing with a type of anxiety disorder and needs help, please contact Anxiety Treatment Centers of California online or call 855-972-9459 to speak to a member of our team and find treatment options in your area.