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10 Stress Relief Techniques for Your Voice

As a voice coach, I’ve seen firsthand how stress can impact vocal performance. A vocalist might feel like they are working ten times harder to sing in their normal range, forget lyrics, or experience strain and tension.


If you’ve been there, there might actually be nothing wrong with your vocal cords—you may just be experiencing emotional stress that has manifested itself into your voice. 


Your voice is a delicate instrument, and it is easily affected by the state of your body and mind. Whether you’re a professional singer or speaker, understanding how stress can impact your voice is crucial for maintaining its health and quality.



How Stress Affects the Voice


Stress can manifest itself in your voice in many different ways.


Tension: Stress can lead to tension in the muscles surrounding the voice box and pharynx, creating vocal strain, tightness, and sometimes pain.


Fatigue: Chronic stress can lead to vocal fatigue, making it feel difficult to sing or like you are working harder than normal.


Loss of Range: Stress may cause your voice to sound higher or lower than usual, impacting your range and ability to keep a consistent pitch and tone.



Top 10 Stress Relievers


Since our mental health can influence our physical bodies (including our voices), it is important to know some tactics to improve our state of mind and relieve stress. Here are some of my favorite stress relief techniques.


#1: Sleeping

Prioritize quality sleep to reset your body and mind. Establish a consistent sleep schedule and create a relaxing bedtime routine.


#2: Physical Exercise

Activities like boxing or other forms of exercise can help release tension and promote overall well-being.


#3: Mindset

Practice deep breathing exercises, meditation, and mindfulness techniques to calm your mind. I highly recommend using meditation apps.

Pro tip: For all you Voice Straw users, pretend you are breathing in through one of your straws and out through your mouth to encourage diaphragmatic breathing.

#4: Go Outdoors

Spend some time outside, soaking up the sun and connecting with nature. Going for a walk or practicing grounding techniques can help alleviate stress.


#5: Stretching

Neck, shoulder, and vocal tract stretches, or even just a good full body stretch, can release tension and improve vocal flexibility.


#6: Voice Straw

Experiment with the 6mm straw submerged in water to reduce vocal strain.


#7: Writing It Down

Journaling can be a powerful tool for purging and processing stress and gaining clarity on your thoughts and emotions. Take some time to write down your worries, fears, and frustrations, then determine if these are things you can or cannot control.


#8: Tell a Friend

Reach out to a trusted friend, family member, or therapist to share your feelings of stress. Sometimes, simply talking about your stressors can bring relief and perspective.


#9: Tapping

Tapping and vibration can work wonders for stress relief. Try using a mantra and tapping on your throat, head, chest, etc. to calm your thoughts and connect your body to your mind.


#10: Voice Massage

Book a full body voice massage to relax your muscles and eliminate tension and imbalances. Many clients say vocal tract reconditioning (a full body voice massage) is a game changer for their career. Book a session with me using the form at the bottom of this article.


Make sure to follow along on Instagram to learn more about stress, the voice, and other tips!



 

Managing stress is essential to maintain a healthy and vibrant voice. By incorporating these stress relief tips into your daily routine, you can minimize the negative impact of stress on your voice. Remember to always prioritize your self-care and listen to your body.

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