Anxiety plagues the best of us at times, but for performers, its a whole new ball game. The thought of stepping out in front ot thousands of people night after night, remembering every word of every song, it can get nervewrecking!
Singer Ellie Goulding is victim to anxiety attacks so severe that she would refuse to even leave her house.
"My new life as a pop star certainly wasn't as glamorous as all my friends from home thought," she recalls in an interview with Well + Good. "Secretly, I was really struggling physically and emotionally."
Now, she relies on the adrenaline rush she experiences from boxing and kickboxing workouts to help keep her crippling anxiety attacks under control.
"I think part of what sparked my panic attacks was not feeling confident enough to believe in myself - I was scared I wasn't as good of a singer as everyone thought I was," she continues. "And as the stakes grew, I was afraid of letting everyone, including myself, down."
Ellie underwent therapy to address the issue, but she still has moments of mental weakness, especially before huge TV gigs.
"Last year, I was asked to perform at the Grammys - a massive honour but, as you can imagine, pretty nerve-wracking," she says. "In the moments before I walked on that stage, I gave myself a good talking-to. I was annoyed for being paralysed with nerves every time I was about to perform on television. I told myself that this was exactly where I was supposed to be and if other people believed in me, I had to start believing in myself."
The 30-year-old now works to conquer her anxiety problems with high-energy gym sessions, which she often shares footage of online.
"I love that extra kick of adrenaline," she explains. "Keeping fit doesn't mean spending hours at a gym; the key is to find a workout you really love. The more I started doing (boxing and kickboxing) classes and also working out with my trainer, Faisal Abdalla, the better I felt about myself."
Ellie adds, "It wasn't about any change in my outward appearance; it was about seeing and feeling myself get better and stronger. It carried over into other areas of my life, and now I truly feel that exercise - however you like to work out - is good for the soul."
We're so glad you've found an outlet Ellie, we hope it inspires others to do the same!