There’s no question about it. Your mindset about your singing voice, your singing tongue or your speaking voice, for that matter, is definitely going to influence how you communicate, whether it is through singing or speaking.
There are a number of mindsets that control your voice and here is one of them:
What you were told as a child about your voice will either help or hinder you.
Learn to identify what happened during your formative years, whether it was good or bad, by answering these questions:
- When you were younger, especially when you were in elementary or middle school, did a parent, family member, friend or teacher ever tell you to stop singing because you were hurting their ears, or something similar?
- Did a teacher ever tell you to play the part of a tree or rock or some other inanimate object in a musical presentation and the other students giggled or snickered or indicated in some way what you already knew – that you had to be the one who didn’t sing because you sounded so bad?
- Did a teacher ever tell you to pretend like you were singing by “mouthing the words” instead of singing them so no one would hear you?
- Worse yet, did your own mother or father, sister or brother, grandparent or other family member tell you that you sounded like a sick cow or a scared cat or something that, when you sang around the house, just for the sheer joy of singing?
- Did you sing in a choir in your teens (or younger) and feel like you could never be good enough to be the soloist?
- Did your best friend or someone you totally trusted tell you that you sucked at singing? Or something even more humiliating or hurtful?
- Or, after they made fun of you, did they tell you it was “just a joke” when you got angry or cried, as if that made their insensitivity or plain old meanness okay?
- In short, did anyone ever say something about your voice that made you angry or want to cry or hide or never ever sing in front of anyone else again?
- Or, and please be honest with yourself here, were you secretly jealous of the other kids who sang better than you, especially a sister or brother? Or a parent?
Many of you will identify with these scenarios or others like them from childhood. Others of you will not have had these experiences (you were the lucky ones) and may even be one of the people that made fun of others when they sang (not good for you or them). Whichever the case, it is important that you discover what your mindset blueprint is when it comes to standing in front of people and singing or speaking. Once you are honest with yourself and can remember the feeling of your experiences and how others treated you, you will be ready to begin to change how you feel about your voice.
This is a crucial step in learning to sing better, so take time to really think about this.
I’m here to help guide because “YOU DESERVE TO BE HEARD!”
So please leave your questions and comments below.
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Regarding the nasality of my M’s and N’s, it is not a mindset. I’m a confident 40 year old male and I only began to explore singing after a work related injury two years ago left me with plenty of time to explore other ways of amusing myself. I never attempted to sing before so therefore I never learned any bad singing habits or had self-confidence issues about singing, but I grew up in a family of musicians so therefore I always knew I had the capacity to sing if I chose to do so.
I had some professional training by a university educated instructor with a degree in music. When I felt I understood enough about singing I went about my business and left her tutelage prematurely.
I also happen to be a trained actor, so I have a greater confidence than the average person.
I have about a 5 octave range with no voice break, my voice has extreme projection and I can sustain a note counting to 50. I have a powerful diaphragm and large lungs due to my strenuous blue collar work.
Whenever I record my own singing voice I notice that the M’s and N’s are nasal sounding. I’ve toyed around with EQ settings to try to eliminate it but to no avail. I’ve also gotten in the habit of plugging my nose when singing and making sure I’m projecting the sounds in the proper areas in my mouth as well as making sure I’m vocalizing the sounds with my articulators. I do very well all except for the M’s and N’s.
Who knows. Try it yourself and see if you get the same result. I try plugging your nose and singing the words “Many men in menus mimic mnemonic non-named nimble numbers” to the tune of Somewhere Over the Rainbow.
* Try plugging your nose and singing the words…*
Sounds like you have a good thing going for yourself regarding your voice and acting and certainly confidence is not a problem for you!
But there are other things involved in mindsets that do not have to do with confidence. Sometimes when we want something a great deal, we tend to lock ourselves up with tension about the thing we want. It can be happening below the surface where we are unaware of it or above the surface where we are fixed on it so much that the very thing we need to do to overcome the problem eludes us.
For example, I am also a writer and composer and when I get stuck on a passage or melody/harmony/rhythm, chapter or poem, I tend to be the type of person who wants to hammer it out, stay focused on it (almost obsessively) until I solve the problem. This is a tendency towards perfectionism: I want the problem solved now, perfectly and in such a way that I never have to deal with it again.
I suppose we are all like this in different ways. We have an expectation that we set for ourselves and are not satisfied until we meet that expectation.
Here is what I have learned to do, and let me tell you, it was not easy for me at first. I learned it from a close friend of mine with whom I collaborate on artistic projects (songs, a musical and an historical novel).
He is a successful singer songwriter with a Grammy Award and many other credits to his name and this is what he taught me:
“When you cannot figure out the problem, walk away from it. When I cannot get the right melody or lyrics for a song, I go out to where there is a lot of noise, like a mall and just wander around. I take my mind totally off the problem and do something completely different, totally unrelated to the problem. In other words, I let it go. And that is how the solution comes to me.”
This is the same approach that many other great people who are singers, writers, actors, inventors, etc. have used over the years and it works.
As I said, it was hard for me to implement this practice in my own life because I tend to be too hard on myself and get locked into the problem rather than allowing the answer to take over. I would bear down on the problem so hard that the answer could not surface no matter what I tried.
In your case, I would suggest that you just let it go for awhile. In other words, just stop working on making the M and the N perfect. Let go of listening to the nasal sound. Let go of wanting it to sound different. Let go of the frustration about it.
Sometimes by letting it go the answer will reveal itself without effort on our parts.
P.S. Yes, I did plug my nose and sing the words to the tune you mentioned…….
Klaudia, thanks for your comment and question. Actually, there are a number of different posts on the subject of singing mindsets. Here is a link to some of those articles.
I’m very nervous when I sing ,so my voice cracks or sounds tried . These solutions are helpful but not enough and I really want a solo. My friend Ava has a very beautiful voice and me to. What can I do to stop my nervousness fast?
I always feel like it’s a bad thing to sing cos others will get jealous of me and all. I always feel so nervous necks when growing up I always forget my lyrics no matter how many times I mastered it. So I always feel it’s impossible for me to get my lyrics. When everyone is counting on me will still forget my lyrics. And this hurt me badly. And for this am so nervous that I can hardly stand on stage to even sing…
I have messed up many times by forgetting lyrics or notes. It does hurt, but I want to encourage you to never give up on yourself and your voice. This article, called Singing Embarrassment, might help.
Keep in touch,
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