School has taught you to set goals. Set goals, work very hard, and then come to a complete stop. Are you still practicing your geometry? algebra? Probably not. So what about things that you would ideally do for the rest of your life? Like exercise, eating healthy, learning and keeping a new skill? Goals can have their place, but they also have a dark side that can undermine your ability to truly stick to a new habit.
When you set a goal, you are more likely to make short-term sacrifices of your time, energy and attention in a way that's not sustainable...just like going on an extreme diet. Can you eat only one cube of cheese each day? Sure, but not for the long run. When you have a goal (lose 10lbs in a week). The drastic measures seem "justified" because they get you closer to that short term goal. When you have a VALUE (something that will always and forever be important to you) you need to make long term consistent action over your life time. This means you must take it much more slowly. Would you marry someone you just met? No way! So likewise, how do we "get married to" a new habit in our lives like eating better, practicing consistently, or exercising regularly? (You know, all those things that are important but have no deadline so they are therefore not "urgent").
You see it all the time...TV shows like "the Biggest Loser" where someone is working so very hard to lose weight, they get on the scale, and their weight hasn't budged. Completely disappointed, they (hopefully only temporarily) give up and begin binge eating again...until their trainer comes along and pushes them back to the gym to try again. Even with the whole world watching and all of the help in the world, you can still get really discouraged the moment you aren't making progress...why is that?
Our Culture Sets Us Up to Believe that We are in Charge of Our Own Progress- Reality reminds us, that progress is not truly in our control. So if we need progress to "feel good" about taking action, we are much more likely to give up the moment we make a mistake.
So what should you really focus on? Focus on taking action, if you are taking action, you are doing the very most important thing. Progress will come of it's own accord.
Here are a few of the main things that get in the way of taking consistent action over time:
After helping many students develop consistent practice in their singing and life, developing better eating habits, spending habits, exercise habits, and reading through troves of books backed by science on how to change your lifestyle, I've narrowed things down to 5 main skills in easy, 5 minute bites that you can apply to your singing practice (but also your life) :-D.
Now, Go Forth! You Have the Answer...
But that's a lot of work! Yes. It really is. So what if you could make it easier? I could explain to you all the science behind what makes a cake bake, and that would certainly be helpful, as well as let you know the ingredients of a cake and where to source them...BUUUT If I don't actually give you a recipe, you'll be going through a lot more trial and error than is really necessary to bake that yummy cake.
So if you could break it down into tiny 5min bites with a pre-set system, wouldn't that be a great starting point?
The Guide to Consistency in Singing and Life.
The new science of forming habits, plus years of observations, testing and experience have now been simplified down to easy 5min actions with some practical advice and a precise context (like singing practice) included. Purchase the guide below to build the tools not just for your singing practice, but for all those truly important (but not urgent) behavior changes you want to make in your life. :)
As a vocal coach, I've worked with many hundreds of students over the years and have noticed the single most important ingredient to their success: consistent effort (not too much) over a long period of time. The singers that practice too much at a time often get frustrated, and the singers that don't practice over the long haul (months, years) often don't become proficient in their skills. Although my job is to help with the details of learning how to sing, what if you don't know how to be consistent? After all, nowhere in school are we taught how to stick to something when there isn't a test involved, or a grade, or fear of consequences. For some things, like exercise and eating healthy, you can't really use those motivators as effectively in the long run. So we need something different.
It was always heart-breaking for me to see a student quit singing because they don't know how to be consistent with their practice. When you don't know how to be consistent in your practice, you can often make very little progress, then your lack of progress can become really discouraging, and then you quit. It's a vicious cycle that happens in many other arenas in life, but it doesn't HAVE to be that way! In lessons, most of my focus has be with helping you learn how to sing, yet if you don't know the five skills of how to be consistent, you may not stick with it long enough to apply and remember what you learn in lessons. So how do I keep the focus on singing, but give you the least you need to do so that a lack of consistency doesn't sabotage your journey to becoming a better singer? This is where this guide comes in. Instead of referring you to go read 50 books on changing your habits, instead of having you watch a bunch of videos and then try to digest them down into small, bite-sized pieces that you then have to figure out how to apply to your singing practice, I've put this all together in a straight-forward guide.