Grappling With Nerves
Being nervous is a common concern for dj’s, but what causes you to be nervous? The biggest cause of nerves is fear of mistakes. If you’re worried about making mistakes, you’ve likely dealt with it a couple ways. You accepted it and moved forward anyway, or you let it stop you from going after certain opportunities. More realistically though, you probably dealt with it in both ways or you wouldn’t be reading this. You moved forward enough to seek answers to your problems, but you’re still holding yourself back in some way.
There are many situations where being nervous about mistakes can affect you. Live performance, training with an instructor and even scratching on your own can all bring up feelings of panic. No one wants to look bad in front of others, not even themselves. The desire to scratch at your best is normal if you care about your skills and how you’re viewed. Thus, the thought of screwing up, even just a little, can be nerve wracking.
Let’s face it, mistakes are impossible to avoid, so avoiding them is not the solution. Understand, mistakes exist so you can become who you desire to be. If you avoid mistakes, you have ZERO chance of achieving your desired skill level. Not only that, you won’t experience all the great things that come from resolving your fears. Bottom line, mistakes are learning opportunities.
In fact, no amount of researching, teaching, training, coaching, or mentoring will help if you don’t allow yourself to make mistakes. I’ve seen many of my students go through this. They come into lessons with an intense need to impress me and freeze up. Ironically, trying to avoid mistakes is causing them to make more. After teaching the benefits of mistakes, they become relaxed and start living up to their potential.
Don’t Get Upset, Get Excited!
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting you make a habit of messing up. You still want to scratch at a pro level, where mistakes are few and far between. However, in order to get to that level, you have to embrace mistakes and learn from all of them. If you do this, fear of mistakes will go away and your skills will improve rapidly.
So the next time you make a mistake, don’t get upset. Get thrilled and ask yourself what you can learn from it. The answer won’t always be obvious, but it’ll come eventually. Believe me, because you’re going to keep making that mistake until you figure it out. I know because I’ve made TONS of mistakes over the years, but one way or another I found solutions. Even if it meant getting help, like training with my music mentor Tom Hess.
Believing in your potential to achieve is important. Many dj’s like you have gone through the same scratch struggles and overcome them. However, NONE would’ve done so had they not developed a "Can and WILL do!" attitude. Notice I said "WILL" and not just "Can". Simply believing you can, will get very little results because it requires no action. However, believing you will creates action because you know you won’t if you don’t take action.
Don’t Let One Day Spoil a Lifetime
If you’re used to viewing mistakes as a negative, it’ll take time to feel otherwise. So don’t let a “bad day” on the turntables keep you stuck to your old ways. Read this article again and again to reinforce the importance of mistakes. Learn from mistakes and you’ll be rewarded!
Article written by Kwote