You’ve Got the Power!
You want to WOW your audience. You want your performance to be strong yet flow smoothly and influence the audience. How do you do that? Depending on who you ask you will get different answers. People say things like, 'You have to be talented', 'You have to be skillful' or, 'You have to be disciplined.' All of these answers are noble but not always true and need clarification.
Talent is not a prerequisite for becoming an amazing singer and performer. There are musicians (and people in other professions) who showed no promise or were completely misunderstood but developed and excelled despite major criticism like Elvis Presley, Shakira, Fred Astaire and Albert Einstein to name a few.
Skill is necessary to perform but you can be skilled in your technique but due to out of control emotions, sabotage your performance. Just think of how you feel when you are angry and arguing with someone. You get loud and sometimes your anger pushes you to say things that you were not planning on saying. Or you get silent and feel like you have no voice.
Discipline is important. For sure. But what is discipline? Discipline is activity or experience that provides mental or physical training. Exposing yourself to doing something regularly (practice) where you learn how to do something without thinking. Your muscle memory solidifies and reproduces what you want.
Result of discipline? Whether you are happy or sad, angry or joyful, trusting or jealous, you can still produce the performance you intend on performing because your muscle memory remembers. Professionals make it look easy.
Seth Godin said “this is not about perfection or ‘betting everything on it working’, the best way to do the work we want to do, is to have a practice and to show up and do the work regardless of how the world and we are feeling.” From the book The Practice by Seth Godin.
I use to be one of those people who did not have to practice and show up and sing the song. Believe me, that only works for a little while and this always proves to be inconsistent. I had to learn how to discipline myself by practicing my exercises and then the song that I was working on in that order. The exercises help you sing the song, not the other way around.
Most people see the word discipline as a bad word but developing discipline is easier than you think. It all depends on how you approach it. Know that if you are having difficulty making yourself more discipline you are comparing yourself to a high standard and you just don’t think you can do it so you don’t try, and then spiral into discouragement. You have the ability to discipline yourself, you just don’t think so, and that is why you do not. You are powerful right NOW! Henry Ford said “If you think you can do a thing or think you can't do a thing, you're right.” You’ve got the power!
For those of you who are still thinking that you don’t have any discipline, YOU DO… just think of how easy it was to develop a bad habit. It was easy because you did it over and over again. Now you just have to take that same energy and put it into the thing you want to develop.
For my adult and children students alike, I suggest a timer and start with five minutes. Yes, five minutes. Five minutes a day ad up to 35 minutes a week. The interesting thing about this starting point is that the student NEVER only does the exercise for five minutes, they always go over. Then after a while the time is not sufficient for the student as the progress they are making becomes incontestable. Then they enjoy their new-found strength in whatever direction they are going. And then the student motivates him or herself to reach higher, and succeeds.
One last example: I have chosen to not eat gluten at this point in my life. If I were to eat a piece of my favourite key lime pie every day for a year, you would see the evidence of it on my body. Just one piece of pie. Very insignificant in the scheme of things, but will make a huge difference if left unchecked. I am giving you this example when dealing with food, but this applies to singing, playing any instrument or any kind of discipline you are working on. You have the ability to develop discipline right now!
In order to get better at anything, you need to do it regularly. So, go ahead. Decide that you will work towards your goal. A little bit at a time. A little bit every day. Treat yourself like you would treat someone you respect with care, patience and lots of LOVE. Yes, you can do this because YOUR'VE GOT THE POWER!
Keep on Singing,
The Confidence Booster