Read this post to the end and listen to me singing via the link at the end, either one of two things is likely to happen: You may feel inspired and motivated to take inspired action. Or, you may feel at the end of desperation, as in “what have I got to lose” and you’ll be motivated to take desperately needed action.
Since inspiration and desperation are really the only two things that motivate us to change, work with what you have. If have the urge to get up and do something you have been hesitant to take action on or perhaps confront a weakness you’ve been afraid to face, follow it.
Don’t let the moment pass and hope another opportunity will come, because sometimes it doesn’t.
Singing and performing on stage are activities that I love. As a speaker, I have learned to breathe into the emotion when telling a story, so that I am not overwhelmed and am still able to convey the message.Singing however, presents a special challenge for me, because singing is both psychologically and physically expressive, I feel what I am singing deep inside. Highly emotional, sentimental or disruptive music or lyrics mean an emotional, sentimental and somehow disrupted me on stage.
There were times when I turned down the opportunity to sing for some very special occasions, because I feared that weakness of becoming emotional would ruin the performance and thus the event. That all changed for me a few years ago.
There is little that can withstand a man who can conquer himself.
I was scheduled to sing at a community event and one of my songs was the pop ballad, “The Climb”, which was made popular by Miley Cyrus. I had practiced the song with my pianist over and again, whenever I got on the stage to sing, I could not stop the tears.
The struggle, the longing, the determination embodied in the music and the lyrics reminded me of so many chapters in the book of my life. They put my heart in a vice every single time I sang, so much so, that I could barely get through the song.
As the final days before the concert ticked off the calendar and my vulnerability was not only showing, but oozing out of every note in the song, I wavered. Should I just forget that song and not sing it at all?
Are you noticing how the more room I gave to the fear of my weakness gaining the upper hand, the greater the weakness seemed to become?
Wait just a minute! Not sing it at all… I stopped that thought in its tracks!
I had been looking forward to singing. I love to sing and omitting this song would take away from a chance to do what I love. And where would this lead to next? I decided I wanted to do what I love more than I feared possibly making a fool of myself and ending up in a metaphorical heap of vulnerability and naked emotion on the stage. I was singing that darned song!
I wish I could tell you that I got on stage and without a single tear, belted out the most beautiful, amazing and technically precise version of “The Climb” ever heard. That is not what happened. What happened was something even better; I learned that doing what I love has the power to turn a weakness into strength.
Tears welled up before the first note came out. I realized that I had two options. I could try to hold my breath and control the emotions rising up like waves, then I could not sing at all, or I could do what I love, sing and trust the audience to receive it, a little piece of me, like a gift that may not be what you expected, but it can serve you well if you allow it. I chose to sing. (Hear a live recording from the audience by clicking this link: Denise singing)
I’d like for you to take a moment and think really hard about this. Where in your life and business are you allowing your perceived weaknesses to stop you from doing what you love? How are you choosing to hold your breath for fear of appearing weak?
As we come to the end, imagine what your life would look like, if you claimed your strength to be authentic and to do what you love, simply because you can. Remember, inspiration or desperation, if you have the urge to take action, do it.
Post something that you once considered a weakness and can now recognize as a strength that you will use in your life or your business. I’ll send you virtual hugs and high-fives if you do!
(Click this link to hear a live recording of Denise singing recorded from the audience.)