Find YOUR Path

There’s no ONE path.  There’s just YOUR path.  Find YOUR path.

I’ve been paying attention to how we find satisfaction, reach goals and fulfill our dreams in different areas of life - artistic expression, personal relationships, physical and mental health, exercise, spirituality. . . . .

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The Benefits of Yoga for Singers

I've been flirting with yoga for more than 20 years. It has only been over the past few that I began practicing regularly enough to understand the true benefits - both in my life and as a singer.

I read an article in Yoga Journal recently listing a number of benefits yoga provides for our general health. 

Here are six ways that yoga benefits spill over into a singer's world:

1. Improves strength, flexibility, posture, and releases tension throughout the body

2. Increases mental focus

3. Relaxes the nervous system

4. Increases body awareness

5. Gives lungs room to breathe

6. Gives you inner strength and encourages self care

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Cultivating Awareness for Greater Freedom

Our conscious awareness of what is happening in our body while we breathe unlocks potential for stronger tone quality, greater range, longer phrases, pitch control - essentially, greater freedom for singing.

Our conscious awareness of what is happening in our body when we are feeling anxious or under stress unlocks the potential to meet these sensations with perspective.  It also gives us a chance to use techniques like deep breathing (what a coincidence) to efficiently regain balance and control - essentially, greater mental and emotional freedom.

Quiet calm.  Quiet confidence. Ease. Consistency. 

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Taming the Dragon

When you name it, you can tame it.

I recently listened to this story about a dragon at the beginning of a guided meditation encouraging us to name our dragons. Fear. Anger. Impatience. Envy.

Naming these 'monsters' disempowers them. It doesn't feel logical, but it can be a powerful practice.

When we name a dragon like impatience, the simple act of naming it puts us in the role of the observer.  It takes us out of the clutches of the battle with it and allows us to see that we are fighting with our own selves. 

This dragon taming is possible with our singing, as well. The dragons might be strong emotions like fear and anxiety or physical sensations like tightness in the chest or tension in the jaw or tongue.

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The Mystery and Demystification of the Voice

THE MYSTERY - why we are moved in a way we can’t explain when we hear a voice that resonates with our personal experience. What stirs those vibrations, sensations, emotions? Is it the tambre of that voice? The intangible expression of something we struggle to define? The sense of freedom expressed? The poignant suffering? An ethereal, pure aesthetic? Why does it feel so cathartic to sing? What causes that palpable sense of joy and release?  I don’t know and I love that I don’t know.

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Perfectionism - Enemy of Growth

I consider myself a recovering perfectionist. And the story goes like this. . . . Once upon a time there was a girl. Her name was Little Miss Perfect.  She chided, teased and judged - a lot.  Anything that did not fit into her imagined world of perfection was devalued and discarded . . . . until one day she looked around and realized that she was ALL ALONE - because NOTHING and NO ONE is perfect. 

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