teaching students with stage fright
I'd love to hear any suggestions for how to teach people to be less afraid of performing in public, testing, or generally being watched. I hit this in my professional life (I teach college courses) as well as in aikido. I don't have much stage fright myself, just a bit of almost-pleasant nerves beforehand, but I have no insight into how to help students get to that point.
One of my kohei does fine when no one is looking but dissolves into a heap of nerves when under observation, and I wish I could help. Saying "don't be nervous" or "relax" or "it'll be okay" doesn't help. Trying to model the skill by being calm myself doesn't seem to help either--it just makes her conclude "the senior people are so self-confident, they must be much better than me." (Not true in this case--I'm just better at looking composed while floundering!)