How to Become Who You Might’ve Been — When You Think it’s Too Late
Facing my fear of singing at age 36 gave me a new lease on life
When I was a kid I was really good at a few things — soccer and acting.
Those were the only things I BELIEVED I was good at.
When it came to anything musical, I wasn’t interested.
I couldn’t sing so why bother?!
In my childish mind, playing an instrument was annoying with all those hours sitting and practicing.
I stuck to what I knew and did it well.
Then I grew up and soccer was no longer an option for me (long story — I’ll write about in a future blog).
I still acted, which had become such a part of me that I didn’t have to work too hard at it.
So I started dreaming.
Asking myself these questions:
Who do I want to be going forward?
Where am I feeling a void?
I had always wanted to sing…and KNEW I couldn’t (self-limiting belief?!).
Actually I was terrified of singing in front of anyone — even my loving, supportive husband.
It made me sad — I wanted to sing like the people I admired…and I believed that I couldn’t.
That is what I thought — and what did my thoughts become?
As I reflected, I soon understood:
Our THOUGHTS become our REALITY
Our experience of life is based on our PERSPECTIVE.
Changing my perception could change the outcome.
I set out to conquer my fear of singing and change my mindset going forward.
“Happiness is not something you postpone for the future; it is something you design for the present.” — Jim Rohn
I set a SMART goal: Within 1 year I will sing in front of an audience at a karaoke night. Sidenote: Goal to be accomplished in conjuction with a few glasses of wine for courage ;).
Not a huge goal to most, however a HUGE one for me at the time.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned about goals it’s to AIM HIGH.
But back then I was afraid.
So I made a plan (plans are a great start to any goal).
I started taking vocal lessons.
I went through a few great teachers who couldn’t help me — mostly because I was terrified to sing in front of them.
I went through at least 10–15 lessons where I wouldn’t sing more than a hum for a few seconds. I was still so scared and figured that one day I’d get there if I kept working on it.
Then I found my current instructor. She was amazing and cared for my heart as much as she cared for my voice.
“A mentor is someone who allows you to see the hope inside yourself.” — Oprah Winfrey
She encouraged me, loved me, cheered for me and helped me with my confidence.
Her beingness rubbed off on me and in turn, I could choose into my future with forward-movement and belief in myself.
“You know, you do need mentors, but in the end, you really just need to believe in yourself.” — Diana Ross
So in time my goal changed. I went from singing karaoke with a few glasses of liquid courage (which I accomplished within a year) to auditioning for the extremely talented vocal team at my church.
A song from the 2017 Christmas service:
This wasn’t just ANY vocal team — it was one of the best groups of singers I’d ever seen! This dream was one of the biggest I’d ever dreamt and I was almost convinced it wasn’t possible.
So I CHOSE to believe it WAS POSSIBLE and decided to trust and go forward in full force.
I broke through many programs that were holding me back –
“I’ll never be good enough.”
“I’ll never understand what my instructor is talking about.”
“How can I be as good as them?”
“They’ll never accept me.”
I BLASTED and CONQUERED those programs that didn’t serve me. It required a lot of hard work — which lasted about 2 years.
Then I auditioned.
And got feedback.
I auditioned again.
Got more feedback.
I kept fighting through, going back and aiming for the dream.
After 3 auditions over 4 months, I was finally at a place where the vocal team leaders felt I was ready to be on the team!
This goal was MASSIVE and it was one that I didn’t think was possible.
I just had a dream and went for it, not giving up until it was realized.
And I did it - I achieved my DREAM!
Here I am singing at the 2018 Easter service (I come in at 3:30):
What did I learn from this?
“It’s never too late to be what you might’ve been.” –George Eliot
What “impossible dream” do you want to achieve in life?
Is it really impossible or is that just a story you’ve told yourself?
So many people get to a certain age and believe that their dreams have passed them by.
They think it’s too late to start a new business, chase that vision or go back to college.
Truthfully, we are never too old — this is just a story we have told ourselves.
A story that DOES NOT serve us.
We have convinced ourselves that certain things need to materialize by a particular age or else they will never happen.
Nothing is further from the truth.
We can choose to live into our purpose at any age.
“If you can dream it, you can do it” — Walt Disney
When you truly desire to realize a dream, it requires determination and tenacity.
It involves a solid belief in yourself.
It includes breaking down programs around age, time and worthiness.
It means letting go of the constraints we have put on ourselves.
It’s about setting a goal you want to achieve, and continuing to work toward it until you have realized it.
It’s THAT SIMPLE.
It’s never too late to become the man or woman you’ve always wanted to be.
“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams” — Eleanor Roosevelt
Every time I get up to sing on that stage, I am grateful for many things. I am especially thankful that I didn’t sell myself short and give up on my dream.