A Big Fat Lie About Singing
It’s time to bust some myths about singing. One of the biggest myths surrounding singing is that it is only for a select few.
Singing is for everyone and we need to re-claim our right to sing again.
It’s not just for established or potential pop or rock stars. There are many who are under the illusion that they benefit from us believing in this myth, as it stops us from expressing ourselves, prevents us from feeling the true joy of singing and contributes to making ourselves small.
Many, many years ago we all used to sing and it wasn’t determined by any external factors. It wasn’t about how “good” your voice was, or if you were in tune, it wasn’t about competing with each other, or trying to be better than anyone else.
Singing was a way of coming together, expressing ourselves and feeling our natural connection to each other
There was a sense of community, a sense of support, a sense of who we are. This connection runs much deeper than we may have considered and this is why so many of us are magnetically pulled, if you like, to come together and experience the awesomeness of singing in a group.
Recently the BBC published this article – Choir Singers Synchronise Their Heart Beats – talking about the fact that when we sing together our breathing and our heartbeats synchronize, bringing us in line with each other. Bupa health insurance has this article published their on their website , talking about the health benefits of singing, especially in groups, and quotes research done by Jenny Sharples, psychologist and Executive Dean at Victoria University. Professor Sharples’s research concluded that – Group singing is a powerful personal and social health promotion activity, with benefits such as, increased self-confidence, empowerment, wellbeing and interpersonal skills, and lowered feelings of isolation, depression and anxiety. Power-full stuff, but no surprise to those who know the feeling of singing from deep in their hearts in a group.
So what else is going on when we sing?
We tend to focus on the sound of a voice, but a voice is first and foremost a vibration and vibrations we feel in our bodies. Our vibration or sound is created from inside our body and then comes out for all to feel and hear. But what is the origin of your vibration? Is it coming from your heart or your head? The vibration that comes from our hearts has a particular quality. It feels good in our bodies, it is full, unimposing and there is nothing in the way of it, it feels clear. When we connect to our hearts and keep our heads out of the way, there is an instant oneness that happens naturally, where it is not about us as individuals anymore– we start to feel our natural connection to all. This is why it feels so good. In a group situation the feeling is magnified.
I feel to say here that it’s an important step to learn to feel the difference between singing from our hearts or from our heads. The only way to know this is to feel into our bodies and be really honest with ourselves. But I will say that there are a few things to look out for – When our head is in the way it’s difficult to let go and just be in the body.
When we choose to let go of our self-judgement and be truly present, we connect to our hearts and singing becomes very simple
This is where the joy of singing begins. On a physical level, singing from our hearts feels committed but never pushed or exhausting. It feels expanding and the body can remain in a gentle, natural state without having to try or over exert itself.
My experience of holding singing groups over the last few years has been so beautiful
Observing people unfolding, by re-connecting to themselves and letting go of the limiting mind imposed ideals about singing and re-discovering how simple singing really is, continues to be an absolute joy. There have been people who have never sung in front of anyone before, who now love singing in a group. I see many people who have always wanted to sing but have been holding it back for years! The relief when they let go and start to express is very beautiful. Currently so many people will only sing in the car or in the shower where there’s no chance of anyone hearing them. There are others who have been cruelly told by someone that they can’t sing, and so they don’t ever sing out loud again for fear of going through that trauma. And of course there are so many of us who are still learning to express our truth in everyday life.
And we call ourselves free – interesting isn’t it?!
Yes it is time to bust these myths about singing and self-expression and to reclaim our natural right to sing and express ourselves lovingly. And it’s up to all of us to do it for ourselves by listening and feeling with the loving ears of our hearts.