Have you ever felt like you intellectually understand the singing technique your teacher gives you but your body has other ideas when it comes to implementing it correctly or consistently? Do you sometimes worry that maybe this is as good as you’re ever going to sing?
You’re not alone. Nearly every singer I know has been through this at one time or another. You’ve become so good at second-guessing, self-doubt and control that you can’t see the forest through the trees. But the solution lies in your ability to internalize two key truths:
1. Singing is a metaphor for life.
And as such, the journey is the thing! We never arrive. Our lives are an ever-changing and constantly evolving odyssey and so too is our singing. It’s incumbent on us to figure out how to enjoy the journey because if we don’t, we’re missing the whole point.
2. Changing your thinking = changing your singing.
How and what we think about our singing has a direct effect on what our body does to produce the sound, so get under the hood and begin to understand your mindset.
We all have a conditioned set of beliefs (some from our upbringing, some from our experiences) that can subconsciously affect our ability to realize the full potential of our voice. These beliefs can sabotage our ability to fully internalize our singing technique because we carry the emotional responses to them in our bodies as old, self-protective mechanisms, the physical effects of which play out when we sing. So don’t sing on autopilot! Start to gain awareness about your thinking—your body cannot do what your brain is sabotaging.
How to gain awareness? Begin a meditation practice, read a book or frequent a blog focused on mindfulness, start to journal, take a class focused on mindfulness and performance. There are lots of resources out there if you know what to look for.
In whatever way you decide to do it, make the decision to focus as much time, energy, and resources on your thinking as you do on your singing. And remember that the latter can only improve so much without attention paid to the former.
Now I’d love to hear from you. What are three ways you can bring more mindfulness to your singing? What are three ways you can see how your thinking sabotages your singing?
Remember to share in as much detail as possible. So many incredible singers come here each week for insight and inspiration, and your willingness to share your story may help someone else have the “ah ha!” breakthrough moment they’ve been needing. Thank you for adding your unique voice to the conversation to build an inspiring community of supportive performers.
Never forget, it’s progress, not perfection. Believe in yourself because you have an endless ability to evolve, learn and grow while contributing your talent to the world’s special gifts.
Inspired? Check out our musical auditions listings!
The views expressed in this article are solely that of the individual(s) providing them,
and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Backstage or its staff.