In your personal pursuit of singing success it’s easy to become discouraged. In fact, it’s inevitable. What you need to do is find ways to stay focused, positive, and strengthen your voice when you face let downs, plateaus, and potential distractions. One of the dangers to avoid is that tendency to get so frustrated or down on yourself that it drives you to the point of becoming isolated, self-destructive and then even giving up.
Some common factors that often make you more susceptible to spiraling downward during times of disappointment are perfectionism, poor self-esteem, improper training, as well as diet and fitness issues. You need to have a number of tools at your disposal that will also help to boost your creative energy and help you work through times when things aren’t going exactly as you dreamed, imagined, or planned.
First let’s take a look at a fun activity that you can turn into a social gathering. It’s easy to plan and easy to pull off. Best of all its primary focus is to engage your voice and heighten your appreciation for the voices of others. Ideally you want to invite other singers to participate. But this activity will actually work with a group of non-singers. It’s up to you to determine the level of play and the degree of challenge. More than anything else you want to have fun and feel good about singing.
Get Ready, Get Set
Tell each person invited to choose three singers they admire that people might not know much about or they might be surprised that you’re a fan. Come prepared with samples of their singing so that others in your group can become familiar with their work. The goal of this part of the gathering is to introduce others to singers they might not know and to talk more about what it is you like about their music and how it moves or affects you as a singer.
Depending on how much time you’ve allowed for the evening, and the number of participants, you can come prepared to sing a song for one or for all three of your chosen singers. This can even be done prior to your letting the group know about the singer as a tease or to offset any preconceived biases about the singer. This invites focused feedback on their perception of the song and your voice. The goal is to share your taste in singers that others may not be familiar with.
For the next part of your gathering, or for another time you arrange, you will then ask each person to choose a three-song set for a demo project for each person at your gathering, including yourself. In other words you will create individual song sets for each of your guests and for yourself, as will everyone else, based on the following criteria.
One song choice is to reflect the unique personality that each person represents or projects. The second choice must be a song that, personality aside, best showcases their unique voice. The third choice is a song that you feel represents a quality that may be hidden, dismissed, or unexplored that you feel is a potential strength.
So, for each person (self included), you want to jot down a personality song, a vocal showcase song, and a song that reveals a hidden strength or quality. These are to be written on separate pieces of paper with the name of the person the songs are chosen for written at the top. Once everyone is finished, pass the sheet that has the songs you’ve chosen for yourself to the person on your right. Then gather the pieces of paper that have the name of the person whose sheet you just received. The results are to then be shared, compared, and discussed.
Positives In Perception
What’s interesting about this exercise is that you learn about how you are perceived in terms of who you are as a person and what you project as a singer. This invites a lively discussion that can be very surprising, fun, and will likely open your eyes to new ideas, material, and image enhancements.
This is a fun, creative way to keep yourself focused, your ideas fresh, and your perspective positive and upbeat. You also just might grow a little bit during this frustrating period you feared might stunt your growth or even stop it altogether.