To Thine Own Self Be True...

To Thine Own Self Be True...
Friday musings...

How can you be true to yourself in a business and world that needs to compare you,  label you,  and demand of you?

Exhausting, isn't it?

How do you know how to be true to yourself,  if you aren't sure what the truth is???

That's the million dollar question isn't it?

So many of us, me included,  are, were, or continue to be "pleasers".  We want to do the right thing, say the right thing, be the right thing, sing the right thing...

But, the "right thing" for whom?

Pleasers try to do everything for everybody else,  and forget what might be right for them.

It is UP TO YOU to find what is right for you!  Let me clarify that:  not what is comfortable,  not what enables you,  not what makes excuses,  but what is RIGHT and TRUE.

Truth is like growing pains.  It reveals and tests you,  and then suddenly you can breathe again.  It awakens your intuition and you gut,  even if it makes you question.  It challenges where you stand or if you stand at all.  It prompts you, prods you, and whispers in your ear,  even if you attempt to dismiss it.  It isn't going ANYWHERE, even if you ignore it.  It is stubborn and loyal and will quietly nudge as needed and knock you just a little off balance in order to confuse you.

Truth is illuminating,  but trying to pursue it can be annoying!  It reveals in ways that can be exhilarating and can be devastating.

The devastation however, comes from the self being delusional and refusing to seek out and/or recognize truth.

The illumination and exhilaration comes when the self recognizes  his//her need for itself.

At the end of the day,  it is YOU in that audition room.  It is YOU who chooses how to respond to the task at hand.  It is YOU on that stage.  It is YOU in that class or session.

We cannot expect all people to see us,  until we see ourselves.  Even then,  many will not.  However, the people that matter will see and embrace that.

At the end of the day it is YOU.  However, that you must take the risk and accept the mission to discover what is needed to find the self' truth. 

In practical terms,  you cannot be true to your self as a singer if you do not understand and claim your technical behavior.  You cannot challenge yourself,  until you know why and how to DO that.  You cannot call yourself by technical names until you know what it means, not just in words, but in actions! 

What is your voice able to do?  What is it capable of?   Where does that take you?  Just because you can does it make it a good idea?  Just because you can sing the notes,  does that mean you can sing the role in a physical, and artistic  way that illuminates the style and accesses what the composer demands?

Do you understand your athleticism?  Do you know what restricts you?  Do you know how to develop further?  Do you know what is simply not going to happen?  Do you know what you can choose and what you simply need to move away from?  Do you know what is your best self,  and what that best self is best suited for?

These are the truth questions.  These are the ongoing questions to discover one's own truth.

You have to be ready to hear the truth,  but not to be bullied or ridiculed or abused. 

You need to discover what is needed and required and then find out how YOU can meet those needs and requirements in a way that accesses your own talent, ability, and skill sets and does not put you at risk.

Being true to self does not mean ignorance,  delusion,  or bubble wrap!  Truth takes work.  Hard work.  It means getting your hands dirty and digging.  It means asking for help. 

What are you able to do?  What are you able to understand?  What are you able to put into practice?

Then, what is possible?  What potential have you left to discover and reveal?  How do you keep growing?

The answer to the questions "can you xyz?"  is not always "yes".  Sometimes it is "I don't know", or "not yet", or simply "no".  

Yes is not always the right answer.  It is not always the safe answer.  It is not always the clear answer.

Are you able to answer without a "yes"?  And then, can you say why?

Finding your truth takes time.  It takes study.  It takes recognizing what you have, what you need, and how to get that and where to get it.

Are you prepared to walk into a room and offer what you do un-apologetically?  Can you actually deliver what you say you do?  Does the "language" of your craft confuse you? Are you full of excuses?  Are you unable to take in a suggestion?  Are you sure you are exactly where you are, or are you trying to please in order to be there?

I cannot answer those questions for you.

The more you keep asking,  the more there is to know.  The more there is to know,  the more there is learn.  The more there is to learn, the more there is to claim.

The claiming reveals the truth.  The truth reveals the SELF.

To Thine Own Self Be True.

Susan Eichhorn Young covers all things voice—strong and sophisticated singing and speaking. 

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