Updated: Aug 17, 2021
How long have you been singing for? Have you had moments when you took a break from singing? Or is singing a new passion for you? Passion comes and goes but just like fire itself, it needs some attending to stay alive.
While I was out camping last weekend, I helped make our campfires last the whole evening, even despite the rain on our second night. When I was finally able to just sit and admire our work, I came into a bit of a meditating state and started thinking about the beauty of this process and how it relates to my own passion for singing. Here is how you too can feed your passion to let it expand and last a lifetime:
1) Make It Easy
No one likes to struggle with their voice. You can learn from starting a fire that if it keeps on dying, it is usually because you didn't build it right.
The first night we tried making our fire, we didn't have any kindling. Getting some from the forest could have had us evicted, lol! And we forgot to bring some newspaper. We purchased some logs and a wax wood chip fire starter from the campground thinking it would be enough. But STRUGGLE we did! We soon realized that trying to save a few bucks by not buying kindling, a key component, was our first mistake. We went back to the campground office and spent the extra few dollars toward more wax wood chip fire starters, paper and kindling.
The point I'm trying to make is, giving your voice a solid foundation is of prime importance. Each component of your vocal technique should be addressed in a logical order to work well together. First you begin with some crunched up paper and kindling on top. You add small pieces of wood built in a log cabin set up and arrange the large logs in a teepee formation. In singing, that is your posture and releasing all sources of tension to create space and allow for adequate vocal placement. It is creating the house of your instrument where the voice can resonate freely. Next, you light it up! You connect with the emotion of your song. Your heart and voice are on fire! It burns brightly! But it also needs oxygen so you blow on the hot coal regularly to power and revive the flames as breath fuels your voice, always.
If you keep getting “burnt”, then look deeper into your support, how you manage your breath, relaxation and how you're letting your emotions transpire through it all. If you're not sure of what you're doing wrong, trying to figure it out on your own may be discouraging. Ask for help from an expert to get it RIGHT.
Despite being experienced at making campfires, my boyfriend and I took for granted that without ALL of the right items, the fire may start but it wouldn't catch, and even less, last. And even after logs were burning well, the fire still needed some attending to in order to survive. Moving the logs around, re-centering the hot coal and blowing on the embers to keep the flames happy were necessary. Singing is the same; learn and perfect your vocal technique to sing as high as you want, belt and increase your stamina but also continually keep your voice in check to avoid developing bad habits as time goes by.
It's easy to let yourself go if you're not paying attention. It's also harder to correct mistakes rather than start the right way from the get go. Instead, make it easy for yourself by reaching our for the help you need in order to understand your voice 100% and sing the songs you love and are passionate about.
2) Make It Fun
Choose songs that deeply resonate with you and that you truly enjoy singing as opposed to songs you are told to sing. Perform at events that you care about and where you have a supportive audience. Welcome positive reinforcement and feedback. Don't take criticism to heart. See opportunities to grow and savour the process!
Every time it feels like something took the fun out, go back to principle number one: Make It Easy! Where did you fail? What do you need to make it better?
It was actually raining on our second night camping. I doubted that we could get a fire going but my boyfriend insisted. We got smarter this time however and purchased ALL that we needed to get the fire going nice and strong the minute we lit it. The rain didn't bother us nor the fire at all and the flames were even higher and stronger than the previous night.
When singers are prepared to face challenges, nothing can stop them either. They have faith in their skills and sing the night away as if it were nothing. They have FUN. Their energy is mesmerizing. Their voice soars above the crowd and the energy is palpable. Have you ever experienced the magnetism of such a singer? Have you ever gotten goosebumps when you sang from your soul? Can you get enough of feeling inspired?
Once you stop struggling and sing your heart out instead, you are free to surrender with joy to the magic of music. You immerse yourself in vibration and lose yourself to the most beautiful sound you have ever heard: your own! It's UNIQUE and INTRICATE. Full of LIFE. Full of LOVE. Full of PASSION!
I spent hours watching our fire. We certainly spend countless hours singing in our lifetime! At once powerful and destructive, fire, singing, and passion are forces to be reckoned with. Take a moment to honor your vocal successes daily. Big or small. Feed the side of yourself that needs to be acknowledged and that longs for its place in the spotlight.
Next time you feel your singing flame weaken and you need a boost to make your it easier, do not hesitate to reach out. Or add some spark to your voice today and refine your current skill to maximize your hotness!
I'm not sure if our teaching and learning styles are compatible but as I see it, there is only one way to find out: try it!
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The heat's on, get crackling!