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Literally, 99% of the messages and comments I get from you guys involve anxiety or nerves.
AND I TOTALLY GET IT.
To this day, I still suffer from anxiety before going to work. The anxiety and nerves that a lot of us feel before a shift is very unique. “Regular,” degular smegular jobs may cause nervousness, but the anxiety felt by a stripper is something totally different. Other employees in different fields don’t have to deal with:
Being naked (people literally have nightmares about going to work naked, and we do it WILLINGLY).
The inconsistent money
Starting the shift at a deficit
Dealing with strangers, creeps, and the law while knowing you have little to no protection
Of course those things may make a lot of us feel anxious!!
From my very first shift, I have felt borderline intense anxiety about going to work. Once I got to work, it died down a little, and once I started making money, that anxiety would disappear!
There IS light at the end of the tunnel!!
I’m going to share with you my tried and true tips that I use to overcome anxiety before going to work!
Disclaimer: If for you, there is no light at the end of the tunnel, and you experience full on, intense anxiety all the time during your shift and even before and after, then you seriously need to sit down and think about if being a stripper is really for you. There’s no shame in not doing something because it’s detrimental to your mental and emotional health.
Have a Pre-Work Routine
Doing the same routine before every shift will provide a sense of comfort!
Get ready for work the exact same way, at the same time, every time you go in. I would suggest doing the majority of your routine in the comfort of your own home. I was never one of the girls to spend time getting ready in the locker room, because I felt more calm and secure doing it in my own bathroom.
Even on nights that I went promoting before work, I would get ready the exact same way.
Nothing fancy, just consistency.
I always showered before a shift to help me relax. I would do this self-care shower routine to try and get myself to a good baseline of relaxation. Then, I’d do my makeup, my hair, and then make sure that my work bag was packed and ready to go! All of this with some good music in the background and a blunt.
Which brings me to my next tip.
Take the Edge Off
Now, listen to me VERY closely.
You should NOT be dependent on having to do drugs or drink alcohol before or during a shift in order to get through it and make money. That is the number one red flag that stripping is NOT for you.
But, I do think that “taking the edge off” is helpful for a lot of strippers who suffer from nerves or anxiety. This may mean taking your prescribed medication, smoking weed, taking a shot, etc.
YOU KNOW YOU. If it ever gets to a point where you NEED any of those things (minus any medication that is prescribed to YOU) to be a functional stripper then you seriously need to reevaluate.
For me, smoking weed helps relieve my anxiety in almost every area of my life, so smoking before work was only natural for me and is part of MY process.
Drinking as a dancer at a strip club is pretty much unavoidable and I’m not going to lie, it DID help, but when it came to the alcohol I was cognizant of my dependence on it and made a promise to myself that I wouldn’t let it get out of hand. You should do the same!
In regards to anything and everything you may do to take the edge off… just don’t let it become a problem.
Listen to Calming Affirmations or Music On the Way to Work
I listen to positive and calming affirmations (find them on youtube) anytime I’m in the car!
Affirming that “I am…” secure and #blessed did wonders for ya girl’s mental mindset going into work. I would highly suggest looking into positive affirmations (like I said, just youtube “positive affirmations” and follow the instructions), it’s basically guided meditations that you can do anywhere (like when commuting to work).
The positivity, repetition, and calming nature of the videos really got me into the right headspace.
If affirmations aren’t your thing, then I think you’re favorite calming music can do the same thing!
The power of sound is immense and it’s definitely something I recommend taking advantage of.
Find Comfort in Other Dancers
Talk to other dancers in the locker room and out on the floor when it’s that limbo time between the start of your shift and the busy times.
Talking to people can take your mind off of your anxiety and nerves!
Complaining about something stripping, customer, or club related is the number 1 way to start a conversation with your fellow dancers.
My advice regarding your coworkers is to be friendly, but not too friendly (until you know someone is trustworthy). Other strippers are humans too! Having a work wife is a great way to establish something that is positive for you at work (besides $$$). Looking forward to seeing your work wife at work will help relieve some of that anxiety!
Side Note: Put on Your Big Girl Panties and Push Through for the Money
Now, like I said in the beginning if you’re having serious, debilitating anxiety at the thought of going to work, then find a new job!
But, something that helped with my mild anxiety and general nervousness was just being stern with myself.
I basically forced myself to get over myself and put my big girl panties on because this anxiety is not going to stop me from getting my money.
Some nights, it did. Some nights, I was able to push through and have really good, non-anxiety riddled nights!
For me, a major key was to just focus on making money.
Whenever it got to be too much, I took breaks from dancing (like a week off) and reevaluated if I wanted to keep dancing. I always made the decision to go back to work, because I knew myself and I knew what I wanted. You need to have these conversations with yourself, too!!
It’s okay not to go in some nights! Your mental health is a priority! You can’t make money if you’re not into it 🤷🏽♀️.
Every stripper deals with anxiety differently, but these are just some of my most helpful tips to deal with it. I hope they helped!!
I think pretty much everyone suffers from anxiety and nervousness at some point! Don’t feel like you’re alone and don’t be afraid to reach out for help! My inbox is always open!