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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricky business » » The stress of it all! (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

NJJ
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Thanks to the ideas of forum members I have dramatically heightened the number of shows I do AS WELL AS the fees I can ask. I am now doing up to 6 shows a day on weekends!

Whilst the shows are tiring, I find them pretty easy to do when the weekend rolls around. However, I am finding that in the days BEFORE the weekend shows I get quite stressed, worrying that I haven't left enough time between shows etc.

My problem isn't so much being organized or doing too many shows, it's just feeling comfortable going to bed on Friday night, knowing that my weekend will be good!

HELP! I:M LOSING SLEEP!
:eek: Smile Smile
wizardofsorts
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Chicago, IL
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Nick,
I have two pieces of advice:
1. Make a checklist of everything you need to take with you and need to do. If you forget something or something gets fussed up, put it on the list

2. Don't worry, the stress will go away. Have a cocktail, pull out the calculator, add up those fees you going to collect, and go to bed with a smile on your face.

Glad to hear things are going well for you. What advice specificly did you use from Café members? Hmmm, I'm imagining a killer list that I can steal and use all for myself, Hahahahaha! (evil laughter)
Edd
Edd Fairman, Wizard of Sorts is a corporate magician available for your next trade show, hospitality suite, client luncheon, or company event. http://www.wizardofsorts.com
NJJ
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The best three bits of advice

1) Be the most expensive in my area. People assume that the most expensive is the best!

2) See the benefits not the features.

3) Offer different packages. People like choice and if you can give it to them they won't need to go elsewhere for other choices.

I have a checklist of everything and I KNOW deep down inside that its all fine and my shows are always fine.

But I still get STRESSED!
Donald Dunphy
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Victoria, BC, Canada
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There is an excellent book of really practical tips to reduce stress and worry. It is called "How to stop worrying and start living." The author is Dale Carnegie. You can purchase the paperback in a bookstore for less than $10.

It was a great help to me.

- Donald.
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
Jon Gallagher
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Elmwood, Illinois
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Many years ago, one of my mentors told me that the minute I stopped being nervous before a show would be the moment I fell on my face. He said that I needed that nervous energy to ensure a good show.

To this day, nearly 30 years later, I'm always nervous before the show, sometimes as much as 24 hours before. The minute they announce my name, the nerves are gone and the nerves turn into pure energy on stage.

It's weird, but he was right. On the few occasions when I've not been nervous, the show didn't go as well.

-Jon
www.jongallagher.com

Hey! I'm finally a Dot Com!
London
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You can try to stop worrying but some people just can't stop. Look at Annemann and where stress got him.
(Just kidding Ted if you can hear me).
Seriously though. Is it stress or anticipation? Anticipation is not so bad but it is harder to cure. And six shows a day is a lot. I think stress is a giving when you work that much. Keep up the good workand hope the stress thing works out. I don't really have any advice about it I am stressed constantly so if you get good advice pass it my way.I better end this post now it is strating to stress me out. lol
THOUGHTfully,

LONDON
NJJ
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It's different from the nervous anticipation of a show. The adrenaline of knowing you are about to perform is GREAT!

This is more a general worry and unproductive anxiety in the days leading up to the event.

Maybe I should take up Tai Chi.
magic4u02
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You need an outlet to get yourself away from all the stress and leave it behind. Do sonething you really enjoy doing and use that as a method for relaxation and to forget about things. If you love movies, go to a movie. Whatever it takes to allow yourself some "me" time.

Is your worry one of not being certain you have things set up the way they need to be? Do you feel it is an unorganized stress? Pinpointing why you're stressed will be important to alleviate the stress all together.

Kyle
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NJJ
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Gee...I've always enjoyed magic; maybe I could take that up as a hobby? Smile

Just kidding.

I am total workaholic. I am not happy unless I am in the thick of organizing a gig or performing. I get very uptight whenever I go on holidays or take time off!

I am not a naturally organized person and so any organization I DO have is very forced and requires A LOT of effort.

I think creating more detailed checklists will help me.
Jim Snack
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Nicholas,

You wrote: "I am not happy unless I am in the thick of organising a gig or performing. I get very uptight whenever I go on holidays or take time off!"

I know this feeling. It takes days to unwind and come down. If I take a two week vacation, for the first week, I am wound up. It is not until the second week, that I start to relax.

The only solution I've found is to try to be more balanced, by taking time to exercise and/or meditate on a regular basis, daily, if possible.

You say, "I am not a naturally organised person and so any organisation I do have is very forced and requires A LOT of effort."

Me too! This is a constant struggle. A book I found helpful is "How to Be Organized in Spite of Yourself"

Click Here!

Even when I devise workable systems, however, I often abandon them out of boredom. Sometimes I think that it is a physiological or psychological "addiction" to the adrenaline rush I get when working under pressure or stress. It takes clear thinking and discipline to stay organized, but that's just a habit that needs constant reinforcing. Yes, it is hard work, but necessary.

Finally, you said, "I think creating more detailed checklists will help me." That has never worked for me. I have them, but never look at them. Sequential thinking becomes boring.

The only thing that works for me is to SLOW DOWN and take my time as I prepare for a show. I try to enjoy that process as much as the show. If I'm running around like a chicken with its head cut off before a show, not only is it unnecessarily stressful, but invariably the show suffers.

In the word of a fellow presenter, I try to "keep my fun meter on maximum, and my stress meter on minimum."

One way I do that is to keep my shows technically as simple as possible. If I am worrying about hundreds of technical details, I cannot focus on performing, which is the fun part. My solution means few props, solo act, no illusions, and being able to walk in and perform with as little as five minutes of set-up. Having an act like that can really lower the stress level.

I hope this helps.
Jim Snack

"Helping Magicians Succeed with Downloadable Resources"
www.success-in-magic.com
magic4u02
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I love the check list idea and I use them constantly. There is something about having them listed on paper on in the computer that allows you to rest a little easier knowing you do not have to have that all on your mind.

Kyle
Kyle Peron

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Steve Hart
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Nicholas, Please don't burn out and crash on us.

I know I have seen guys do this.

All of the above advice is great.

Let me give you something to think about. I believe that there is a "Flow" to the work we do. Just like water when it is moving, it has a natural flow, your work can do the same. Don't force it, don't stand still. Find the "Flow". It will make you happy.

Steve Hart
Cape Canaveral, FL USA
www.SteveHartSpeaks.com
www.magic2motivate.com
"Motivational Magicians are some of the highest paid magicians, find out why?"
Avrakdavra
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Reference:
Finding Flow: The Psychology of Engagement With Everyday Life
by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (yes, you read that name correctly)
MagicalPirate
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I find I have the same problem the night before a festival. I think it is more of an issue of worrying about getting up late and that would cause trouble. With 6 shows a day getting up late could have a domino effect. I find myself looking at the clock several times in the night. I have yet to find a way to stop it.

You can find Finding Flow here:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/det......;s=books

Martin Smile
Martin Blakley, CSH, DASH, CMSA
http://www.thehypnoguy.com/HYPNORESOURCES
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Copyright to my own words retained 100%.
NJJ
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I do that too!
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