Is Your Vocal “Backstory” Hindering Your Success? Find out…
I believe a word, a glance, or breath has the power to shift perspective.
In any moment, there lies a gift to be unwrapped that leads us to greater awareness, a deeper place of openness – that fertile ground in which we grow and make connections to grander views of ourselves, others and our lives.
Today, I am asking you questions that plant the seeds for growth so you may continue to cultivate a strong, expressive and confident voice.
[Tweet “How we use our voice is connected to who we are – we are inseparable - there is no faking it”]
Your vocal backstory is coloring how you use your voice today.
By shedding some light on your story, you are allowing the opportunity to release ideas that are not serving you and to magnify the ideas that are giving you results.
This is not about blame, shame, or guilt – this is about observation, awareness, and a choice for personal freedom…
To help guide you, in the below video I share this teaching and a bit about my vocal backstory, how it was showing up in my voice, and what I did to change it.
1. Using plenty of adjectives, describe how, when you were a child, people used their voices in your home? Think about tempo, volume, pitch, emotions…
2. How were you allowed to use your voice in your home?
3. What phrases were said to you about your voice?
4. What emotions were “okay” to express?
5. What emotions were not comfortable to express?
6. How may this be showing up in your voice today?
7. What happens physically when you choose to communicate?… eg, raised shoulders, clenched jaw, tight lips, dramatic hand gestures. What of these are considered “family traits” or a habit picked up from a previous experience?
8. What about the sound of your voice? Do people say you sound just like your sister, brother, or your father? To what characteristics are they specifically refereeing? Eg; timbre, pitch, diction… As most of my family has Minnesota roots, we have very closed o’s.
9. How may your voice be compensating today because of some projection or expectation that you felt or still feel? Intelligence, strength, connection, humility, spirituality, grief, love.
Take some time with these questions. Be aware of how the answers are revealed to you… what happens when having a difficult conversation with one you love, when you feel the urge to tell your child to be quite, or the desire to share your new idea. What about the agenda to get things done at all costs, to be present in a dialogue with a friend, when sharing difficult news –
Then take it to the next level and observe how it is showing up in your vocal work… in auditions, performances, practices, lessons, presentations, sales calls….
It is all connected – we are all connected, and isn’t it loverly!
Have fun with this!
I would love to hear from you… let me know what you discover when you shed some light on your vocal backstory… be ready for a bold awareness!
Until next week, always Rejoice In Your Voice™!
January 30, 2015
Hi Tricia, what a great exercise. I’ve realised that voice work, especially singing, is mostly mindset-driven. Through these questions I discovered that as the youngest in my family as well, I always raised my voice or pushed out to be heard or noticed in conversations, and yes, yelling across the house for attention. There is also a tendency to rush or put too much pressue on oneself.
This shows up in my singing sometimes today, and the throat tension is there, especially when approaching high notes. But curiously, at work my voice tends to be low to project an image of professionalism, and especially around men and my superiors. I’ve also realised I automatically use vocal fry there too much, which is not healthy. Question 9 was hard, but a relief. There is a lot of tension, over self-analysis, and loss of joy and freedom which I will be working on. This was eye-opening. Thanks for sharing.
February 9, 2015
Therese, thank you so much for your thoughtful reply! Wonderful insights you have shared. Of course, I can relate to a lot of what you said and how interesting that your work voice is lower… Amazing how we adapt to our environments! the vocal fry is so interesting. I have heard many studies on it – one saying it is a sign of affluence. I hear it creeping into all sorts of commercials and news reporting. Interesting. But great that you are catching it. I am so glad that you worked through these questions and that you found them helpful. And the work goes deeper 🙂 Love that! Big hugs to you! xoxox