PERFORMING ARTS CONSULTING
Dance, music, and the theater arts have much in common with sports. For example, they each involve the development of complex cognitive-motor skills through extensive practice and a demand for high-level skill execution under intense pressure or competition. Performing artists can thus draw upon much of what has been learned from sport psychology research regarding the development of expertise and enhancement of performance.
THE RIPE MINDSET
Ripe Minds has distilled over four decades of research into a comprehensive, detailed framework that can help creative artists and performers of any age or performance domain in their quest to realize their full potential and perform their best when it matters most.
The Preparation Mindset involves the mental attitudes and approaches that are most conducive to attaining a high standard of performance excellence. Everyone wants to be among the best in their field. However, by definition, only a select few can be designated “elite” or “expert.” In addition to the right combination of nature and nurture (i.e. inherent talent and environmental supports), the development of expertise involves sustained effort over time, often in the face of obstacles and setbacks. Only those who are willing to relentlessly push the limits of their capacities will be able to reach the elite level. This sort of commitment requires mental qualities such as vision, mindfulness, confidence, optimism, discipline, and resilience. These are the mental habits of champions, and they can be developed and enhanced through instruction and practice just like physical skills.
The Performance Mindset involves the mental skills and processes that allow performing artists to deliver an already established standard of performance when under the pressure of a live or televised audience. The audience doesn’t know or care about the hours upon hours of practice that led up to the performance. They simply want to be wowed and entertained by your talent now. And you are expected to deliver now. There are no do-overs or second chances. The discomfort and stress caused by awareness of this expectation, or “stage fright,” is quite similar to the performance anxiety experienced by athletes during major competitions. Indeed, sport commentators often refer to the highest-level of competition in any sport as the “Big Stage.” Performing optimally under such pressures requires the development of mental skills aimed at regulating arousal, attention, and emotion.
Every great dream begins with a dreamer.