Hello 2019! For many of us the new year means a time to set goals and make changes. For me, the new year is also a time of reflection, a time I can spend looking at how I was able to grow the previous year.
This year happened to be full of many new, exciting, and growth inducing experiences. In March, my husband and I became first time parents to our beautiful daughter. Then in May we picked up our little family and moved to a different state so that my husband could start his new job. I could go on about each of these experiences and how they have impacted me as a person. However, as my year has played out before me, I keep going back to my goal to be more vulnerable and stop letting my fear of failure keep me from doing things I love. One of those loves being my love of singing.
Since I can remember I have always loved to sing. I was in choirs as a kid, both in church and school, I even performed in a few musicals in Jr. High. Somewhere along the way though, I let my fears of failure along with feelings of not being good enough keep me from pursuing it. Other than singing in the occasional church choir and at home I pretty much stopped. Now fast forward to today. My Jr. High, High School, and even college days are now years behind me…and yet, I still have had a burning desire to do more with my voice. Thus, when making my goals for 2018, I decided the time had come to overcome one of my fears and find my voice!
My crazy first part of the year, along with my penchant to procrastinate meant that I didn’t find a teacher and start lessons until August, but I finally did it. Before my first lesson, man was I anxious! I was nervous my voice wasn’t good enough. I was nervous about messing up. Being a more quiet person by nature, I was also nervous about singing alone and having all of the focus be on me. In spite of all of my worries I showed up to that first voice lesson ready to take whatever came my way. Now, here I am in January still taking lessons, and I love it! No, my teacher did not tell me I have a horrible voice. No, my voice is not perfect, but it is good enough! Yes, I have messed up multiple times during lessons. Yes, the focus is all on me and yet, I have survived. Every week I can feel my voice getting a little bit stronger. Every week I am learning new techniques and exercises that help me feel more confident in my abilities. Every week I ask myself, why did I let my fears hold me back for so long? I feel so good! Even though I know I still have so much to learn, being vulnerable and putting myself out there has helped me in so many ways. Each mistake makes me aware of something I can work on. As I work on those areas of weakness they then become stronger. Each time this happens I gain a greater confidence in myself and my ability to overcome my weaknesses. That confidence is then driving me to want to get out there and do even more. Yes the possibility of failure is still there but I am learning that it doesn’t have to define who I am. From failure I can rise up and become better than I was before. Really, it is freeing.
To those of you who are setting your goals for this coming year, what have you always wanted to do but never have? What could you gain from it if you did? What is holding you back? Let’s say goodbye to letting fears hold us down! Make vulnerability your guide in 2019 and see where you can go!