I was standing in front of my vocal teacher, readying myself for our warm up exercises.
“You’re forgetting to take deep belly breaths,” she pointed out. I allowed my chest to expand, then started on our “ahhhhs”.
“Your tongue is too tight. You need to loosen it up.”
I coaxed my shoulders and jaw into relaxation and let Nina Simone’s “Feeling Good” pour from my throat.
“Again. More confidence this time. You’re holding back.”
I felt myself get a touch tense. A little frustrated. Was I really holding back?
When I left my lesson, I felt deflated. So I started digging for what could be preventing me from unleashing the full power of my voice.
You see, as much as we think we’re ‘compartmentalizing’ our lives, everything is interconnected. And it’s amazing how distant and distracted we can become when we’re trying to really figure out how we feel, beneath the obvious.
In our busy-brained lives, we forget to notice what we’re up to. What we need. What our tense tongues and constricted chests are trying to tell us.
Maybe you’re about to launch a new course or offering in your business (like I am), and questions are sneaking up on you like: “What if no one buys it? What if instead of getting more freedom in my business, I end up working harder and can’t sustain the success?”
Maybe you’re planning a wedding (also like I recently was!) and trying to pull all the pretty pieces together. And you’re so overwhelmed, you’ve started procrastinating, resisting making headway on your to-do list, and thinking the day of your dreams is mission impossible and it’s not going to live up to your expectations.
Or maybe you’re struggling to make the money you want in your career or business, and you’re beginning to question your abilities and ask yourself: “Am I good enough? Can I really make this work? Will I EVER be able to afford that trip to Italy I’ve been daydreaming about?”
Really, our potential is limitless. We have the power to choose our own thoughts. But if we carry self-limiting beliefs, and decide to listen to those inner critics and self-saboteurs, then we block the flow of abundance. We can no longer receive what the Universe wants to shove our way!
I realized after deep thought, what was holding me back from belting my heart out was:
- Comparing my voice to my girlfriend who was posting videos of herself singing on Facebook, which I thought were absolutely gorgeous
- Criticizing my own voice when I heard back my own recordings
- Memories of being told that because of my seasonal allergies and the excess mucus (sorry, gross), my voice would crack no matter what I did
- And even memories about me being scolded for being too loud when chatting with my friends so to ‘quiet down’ (that one really clicked for why I was holding back!)
As I often do when I’m trying to work through the confusion to get to clarity, I turned to Louise Hay’s mirror work. She links health, happiness and a whole lot more to forgiveness.
When we hold onto our limiting beliefs, it blocks us from being free and growing (and flowing!) in the future. Even if we don’t realize we’re holding onto this stuff, it’s there, squatting in our subconscious. And it’s our job to find it, let it go, and then create a new thought pattern that actually supports us.
Here’s one of my fave activities that I did that left my vocal teacher speechless at our next session:
For 15 minutes, I dug into my memory bank and wrote down anything and everything that I heard someone say, or I told myself about my voice and singing. I was shocked to see the how the list quickly grew from five to thirty memories. Yikes!
Then I went through each one and crossed them off while saying: I forgive you and I’m ready to let you go. And I pictured them floating off into the distance.
That’s it. No candles to light. No phone calls or conversations to have, with friends, family or coaches.
At my next lesson, I let my voice fly and shocked my vocal teacher into momentary silence…until she managed to say: “What did you do?”
And if you want, rip that paper up at the end, ‘cause who wants to hold on to that?!
Let me know what you discovered about the real reason you haven’t done something that matters to you (or are holding off on it) by leaving a comment.