Posted on | January 3, 2011 | 7 Comments
Did you do it? How did it feel?
Did you feel the vibration in your throat? Did it amplify to fill your head?
You may wonder why I have you doing toning, which is what this is called. It has to do with authenticity and vibration and being your best self; but before I explain any further, I need to tell you a little story.
Practice, Practice, Practice
Tim used to direct our small town’s singing group, and one year, he talked me into joining it. He told me I was a tenor, and he plunked me in the tenor section of the group. He then explained to me that I needed to learn how to sing harmony.
I’d never sung in a choir before, so I’d never sung harmony. I just sang along to CDs in the privacy of my home or car, and when the music was too high, I dropped it an octave and sang the melody line in my lower tenor voice.
In a choir, though, tenors sing harmony. We don’t get to sing the melody.
So for a month or so, every evening, Tim would plunk out on the piano the harmony lines of the songs we were performing, and I’d sing my part over and over and over and over again.
When I started, the harmony sounded discordant to me. I knew all the songs we were doing, but I knew the melody, and singing the familiar words to different notes felt really weird.
It didn’t take long, though, before the harmony began to be familiar. And within a couple months, I honestly couldn’t sing the melody of any of the songs. The harmony had displaced the melody grooves in my head.
Finding An Old New Groove
A week ago, I wrote about finding my way back to the true me. I described my resolve to embrace the ME of “I am,” and rediscover the playful woman I used to be.
I thought that would be easier than it is.
I’m discovering that when it comes to being my true self, it’s very much like those harmony notes I learned to sing. All my serious focus over the last few years is like a harmony line that got ingrained in my psyche. Even though the old familiar me had been there for years, in just a short time, I replaced the melody of Ande with a harmony tune that covered up my true song.
In short, I got out of tune with me. And because I was out of tune for so long, that out-of-tune tune is what’s now familiar, so the melody (the truth of me) feels awkward. In order to get back in tune, I need to change my vibrational setpoint.
Which brings me back to the toning I had you do at the start of this post.
What’s Filling Your Head?
That toning I had you do was intended to give you a visceral awareness of how your body is an energetic vehicle of vibration. Even when you’re not singing a tone, you’re vibrating.
When you get in a habitual way of being, you’ve set a vibrational tone. To use my singing metaphor, you’ve picked one of the musical lines in a song, and you’ve stuck with it.
If you’re being true to you, you’re singing melody. If you’ve gotten a bit off track, you’ve dropped into alto or tenor or bass or baritone.
Not that there’s anything at all wrong with harmony. Harmony is wonderful (says a proud tenor J). But when it comes to living, singing your own true melody is what aligned living is all about, and splats come when you drop into other lines.
If you have dropped into another line, if you feel a bit out of sync with the you of you, you’re out of tune. You know you’re out of tune if you’re
… and any number of other negative emotions.
In other words, if you’re not feeling grand, you’re out of tune, and you need a tune up. So how do you tune yourself up?
The Three Step-Tune Up Process
The cool thing about inner tune-ups is you don’t need a mechanic for them. So they’re free. Woo hoo.
Another cool thing about inner tune-ups is they’re very effective. Our neuropathways may seem set in concrete sometimes, but the truth is our brains are quite malleable. The science of neuroplasticity is revealing just how much we can “reformat” our minds.
So here’s how you can get back in tune:
1. Get clear about who you need to be in order to feel how you want to feel.
Most of us have “to do” lists piled up all over our homes, but as Tess Marshall of The Bold Life points out, we need more “to be” lists. The start of every tune up is deciding how you want to be.
In my case, I had the big aha moment that revealed I wasn’t being as playful and fun as I used to be. So I created a vision of the playful me I used to be, the one that broke into song and bounced into a dance at the drop of a hat.
You need to have a clear vision of the kind of person you want to be. What qualities does this person personify?
2. Think about how this real you acts.
What does the real you wear, say, eat, and focus on? It may seem counterintuitive to script out the actions of the authentic you. However, if you’ve covered that person with months or years of inauthentic actions, you have to carve a new groove in your head, and at first that new groove isn’t going to come naturally.
Make a list of ten actions you’d take if you were being the real you who embodies those qualities you wrote down in step one. Make these simple actions. This isn’t a bootcamp. It’s a playground.
I’ll talk to you tomorrow about some of the actions on my list and how I created a generic action style that helps me do everything in sync with my new old me, but for now, I’ll just share three of the things on my list:
–Do regular happy dances
Pick actions that you can take easily as you go through your day. This needs to be an easy process you can quickly integrate into your busy life.
3. Practice being the new you.
The way you create a new groove is by going over and over the same place. So now that you have a vision of you and a list of actions, it’s time to practice them. And practice them. And practice them.
Do these same actions over and over. At first, you’ll have to refer to your list a lot. It will seem awkward. It will seem forced.
In no time, though (for me, it was a matter of days), it starts feeling more natural. And soon, you won’t need a list. You’ll have that new tune, your true melody, ingrained in your head.
Melodies Into Harmony
Now here’s the really fun thing about you and me finding our melodies:
When each of us is living our melody, when we’re in tune with the ME of “I am,” our melody becomes a harmony line to the world’s One True Song. Every person’s melody merges in glorious sync to make stunning, transformational music.
That’s how our world is meant to be.
How about it? Are you in tune? If so, tell us about it. How did you find your melody? What helps you keep it? If you’re not in tune, are you finding your way back? Your story might be just the inspiration someone else needs to hear, so please share it!