Posted in Music, Singing

How to Sing When You Don’t Feel Like It (or Can’t)

All singers, whether you are a professional, hobbyist, or volunteer, will encounter times when creating music just won’t come easily for various reasons.  The most obvious reason will be because of an emotional event that has happened to us or someone we know.  This has happened a few times for me when asked to sing at funerals or weddings (yes, weddings – a happy event, but one filled with high expectations!). 

The most challenging time was when I was asked to sing at the funeral of a woman I had known at church for many years.  She was an amazing lady who struggled with health issues all of her life, but was as sharp as a tack and lived her life with wit, humour, and determination.  When her family asked that I and another person sing at her funeral, I knew that of course I had to do it, even though my guts were churning.  You see, that was the first time I had to sing at a funeral – ever

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Posted in Musings

Knowing Me…Watching You?…A-ha

Okay, brace yourself, here comes a bit of a revelation: 

I love ABBA

And the above title got me singing ‘Knowing Me, Knowing You’.  This song is about relationships – more on that later – but it also makes me wonder… how much do we really know ourselves? 

Do we spend so much time musing about other people’s lives and activities that we lose sight of who we really are, and about relating to others, that we end up feeling more fragmented because we just do not meet other people’s ‘ideal’ standards?

I think sometimes we can spend far too much time watching what other people are up to, especially online, and then in a subconscious way we start comparing ourselves with them.  A subtle depression and inadequacy can take seed within us if we decide that we don’t measure up to what that person is doing or what this person is saying or achieving.  In the meantime, if we do not use that information to improve our own lives, our time is just ticking away and all we have ever done is stare at a screen to keep up with someone else.

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Posted in Musings

To Give, and Give…and Give

So many times over the years I have repeated a pattern which has often, if not always, ended up in me feeling drained, depleted, and sometimes discarded.  When you find yourself in a situation or in relationships with different people – be they personal or professional – and find that you are continuously giving of yourself, or rescuing others in their time of woe to the point of your own mental and spiritual exhaustion, then it is time to stop.  It is time to reflect.  It is time to put yourself first. 

While an awareness of the needs of others and being a compassionate, giving person is a great thing, you do not want to be taken for granted either.  It is wonderful if the one you are helping recovers, but if they ghost you and then go on their merry way and never keep in touch, if they don’t care about you or even ask how you are going, well…it feels like a slap in the face.

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Posted in Musings

Planet of the Fakes

I like positive posts (writing them and reading other people’s), and this is part of the reason why I started The MuSinGer, but sometimes having a good rant feels… well… invigorating.  Seriously though, taking the time to think about why we do what we do as humans and as a society can help us to intelligently question whether these things are actually good for us.

I know that the topic of the effects of social media has been done to death, but one day I was tired and instead of doing the sensible thing, shutting down early for the night, and going to sleep, I numbly looked through some random social media posts out in the ether.  My bad.  Not surprisingly, I soon became unsettled and fed up.  Why?  Well a summary of what I saw went something like this (note – what follows is a fictitious generalisation, not actual posts):

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Posted in Books, Reading

Book review: ‘You Are Enough’ by Mandy Hale

A few posts ago I reviewed Mandy Hale’s book Beautiful Uncertainty.  Her newest book, You Are Enough: Heartbreak, Healing, and Becoming Whole, is the subject of today’s post. If you have read Beautiful Uncertainty, you could not ask for a greater contrast between that book and this new one, and perhaps even wonder if this book is by the same author – indeed it was a big surprise to me.  But I felt that the beauty about both books was not found in comparing them or judging whether one was better than the other, rather it was found in the reality of Mandy’s words and the raw emotion, maturity, wisdom, and passion which has developed in her life since she wrote Beautiful Uncertainty.  Clearly, life-changing things have happened to her in the years since that book, and deciding to write about her experiences to help others was a courageous thing to do. 

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