Mind Body Soul

Transform your Singing with Commitment and Consistency

In this episode of Fearless TV, I share with you the magical power of combining commitment and consistency.
 
I have to be honest, it’s something that I have only started practicing later in life. Better late than never! Perhaps it’s because I am driven more so than ever by my ‘why’.
 
We all have different reasons for why we want to achieve a goal but, in this episode, I share the importance of identifying and connecting to your why as well as how you want to feel as a result of achieving it.
 
Personally, I’m motivated by a desire to reach as many people as possible with the message that anyone can sing, and we MUST sing.
 
Honestly, singing is one of the most powerful tools of self-healing and transformation that we have and yet for a lot us, we are too scared to do it, especially in front of other people.
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I genuinely believe that I’ve been put on this planet to remind people of how bloody brilliant they are and also how singing can be a vehicle to make us feel good and to live in a heart centred space.
 
That’s my why for my goal, which is to build a Fearless Singer community of like-minded people who will support each other in reaching their singing/performance/creative goals.
 
Therefore, I take consistent action with posting these videos and providing content that will genuinely be of service.  
 

This week's episode: Transform your Singing with Commitment and Consistency

Oh! I should mention that I will be going full steam ahead with these vlogs. They’re challenging work but ultimately, I LOVE making them for you. Feel free to subscribe to the Fearless Singer channel and share the love with your friends and family.
 
Also - don’t forget to tell me your goal in the comments! I would love to show you my support.
 
I hope you have the best week!

P.S. The next video in my Beginner Singer’s Course will be in the Student Portal later tonight. You get access to this when you book in for your first singing lesson with me.

P.S.S. Are you on instagram? I share a lot (perhaps too much) over there on subjects such as singing, creating, business and my air fryer cooking. Come on over! https://www.instagram.com/mellathouras/

Overcome the Fear of Singing in front of Others with EFT Tapping

Photo by  Ron Smith  on  Unsplash

Photo by Ron Smith on Unsplash

This week instead of writing you a blog post, I have made a video showing you a powerful technique to overcome the fear of singing in front of a person/people.
 
I have found that during my career as a singing teacher, when students first come to a lesson, they are super nervous. I have even had some students look as though they are going to either be physically ill or bolt out the door.
 
I can 100% relate to this. When I began my lessons at JMI (Jazz Music Institute) and the Conservatorium, I felt exactly the same way.  
 
In fact, it took me five or six lessons to feel as though I could be myself as well as sing like myself in front of my teachers. 
 
When you boil it all down, it really is the fear of being judged and/or confirmed that you’re not good enough.
 
In this episode, I will show you a practice called Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) that can obliterate any old patterns and beliefs that are holding you back from A) starting your singing journey and/or B) filling you with massive doubt about your ability.

Please let me know how you go with tapping. Look, you may feel like a galah at first, but I promise this will bring amazing results. 

Talk to you next week! 

Mel X

P.S. The next video in my Beginner Singer’s Course will be in the Student Portal later today. You get access to this when you book in for your first singing lesson with me.

P.S.S. Are you on instagram? I share a lot (perhaps too much) over there on subjects such as singing, creating, business and my air fryer cooking. Come on over! https://www.instagram.com/mellathouras/

The Life Changing Power of Breath and Taking it Easy

It’s 9:30pm Sunday evening (29 April) as I am writing this and I’m finally in bed after a huge day including an epic gig tonight performing in my band.
 
I’m not sure if you know this but I’m in all girl jazz band called Yas Queen. We play mostly jazz but also leave room for old school pop, rock, blues and soul in our set lists. I don’t want to toot our own horn, but I will. We’re a bloody load of fun. Come and see us sometime!   
 
We played this evening at a quirky little bar in Woolloongabba called Can You Keep a Secret? If you live in or come to Brisbane, you should definitely check it out. It’s run by a fellow Bundabergian and I swear it is where all the big-hearted, creative souls go to hang out. You would feel at home there.
 
Anyway – I had ambitious plans of rushing home tonight from the gig and write you a lengthy article about mindset and how to abolish our singing blocks. This will happen in the near future – but not for now.
 
Instead, I will tell you about a couple of experiences I had today and tonight, which I hope you will draw some meaning from.
 
So where do I start?
 
Let me just repeat - it was a big day. A big weekend, in fact, of cramming in a whole lot of things to do and people to see.
 
It’s Greek Orthodox Easter too, which I inadvertently celebrate as a quarter Greek and a christened Greek Orthodox. *Christos anesti, by the way! 
 
I also live extremely close to the Greek Orthodox church here in Brisbane and it was pumping until 2:30am last night with the clergy singing all of their classic hits from ‘Behold Jesus has risen’ to ‘God Bless the Queen and our politicians’. So, as you can imagine I woke up pretty tired this morning and with a bad case of the Byzantine blues. Google ‘Byzantine Music’ to get that reference.
 
Anyhow after this extravaganza of an evening, I still managed to do a lot today from editing my first video for the Beginner Singer’s Course on my website to celebrating Easter with my cousin Goldie, to learning Aretha’s ‘Natural Woman’ and Gloria Jone’s ‘Tainted Love’ for tonight’s gig. I also made a couple of trips to Officeworks after buying the wrong ethernet adaptor for my Macbook.
 
You are probably thinking, where is she going with this?
 
Well, you see, I had two moments today where either my soul or my body told me to calm the farm down and go easy.
 
Epiphany One: There's always more than enough time and 'rushing' is a choice. 
 
The first epiphany came to me as I was rushing home in the car from Officeworks and I was centimetres away from running into a car in front of me that had diligently stopped for the yellow light.
 
I had the realization then and there that ‘rushing’ can actually be bloody dangerous and there was actually no need for it.
 
It dawned on me that I had time. There was actually plenty of time and it was my belief in a lack of time that was causing me to rush.
 
I not only could have had an accident, but my body was also being negatively impacted. I was in a state of fight or flight for no reason at all.
 
I took a deep breath, forgave myself and did 10km under the speed limit the rest of the way home.
 
Epiphany Two: Breathe and choose to opt out of shit stories + Make friends with Sophia. 
 
After a big first set tonight, I was feeling pretty frazzled mcdazzled.
 
I ignored my inner wisdom to take myself out of the bar for fresh air and have some alone time during the set break. Instead I kept myself ‘on’ and was chatting away to my mates. I was in the middle of talking to one of my friends, when it was like a fuse blew in my brain.
 
I was suddenly very faint, and I literally couldn’t talk anymore. My body became the travel agent from Little Britain, the one who’s catch line is ‘computer says no’.  
 
I excused myself and went outside for air, but instead of chilling out, I bought into the drama of what was happening.
 
I was convinced that I couldn’t do the second set. How was I going to muster the energy to sing three corker soul songs that are taxing on the voice and the body? Aretha Franklin, Gloria Jones, Sam & Dave – c’mon?!  
Anyhow - I had learned this week that Sophia is the Greek word for wisdom. For me, ‘wisdom’ is something we all have access to through awareness. And thank God for Sophia. She brought me back tonight and reminded me that by diving deeper into the story of my body being weirdo and feeling so energetically drained that I couldn’t function wasn’t actually going to help my situation.
 
I took more deep breaths, returned to the bar, collapsed on my best mate Jake and watched our incredible guest artist sing her heart out. Seeing her so connected to her voice and to the music, stopped the negative loop I was in.

[Picture shows the happiness on my face the moment Ella starts to sing and my energy returns. And that's Jake - my bestie.]

[Picture shows the happiness on my face the moment Ella starts to sing and my energy returns. And that's Jake - my bestie.]

I got out of my head, came back into my body and my energy returned in order for me to blast through the set and lug my equipment home.
 
Now it’s 10:55pm, so I should really rap this up.
 
All I want to say is, this week, learn from my experiences today and be gentle with yourself.
 
Let Sophia be your friendly Greek guide. Listen to her. Listen to your body. Say no to the things that don’t suit you and please don’t feel the need to justify yourself. Do things that bring you joy and don’t feel as though you need to cram so many things into your days, unless of course it's exhilarating for you. Meaning, it gives you energy instead of taking it away from you.  
 
When you feel yourself tensing up or your heart racing, remember to breathe. If your mind tries to create a story about it, let Sophia in to remind you that it is simply that… a story.
 
And remember, you are precious.
 
Take care of yourself!
 
Mel Xx
 
P.S. The first video to my Beginner Singer’s Course is in the Student Portal. You get access to this when you book in for your first singing lesson with me.

*Chrisos Anesti is Greek for 'Christ has risen.' Another way of saying 'Happy Easter.' 

A Love Note for the Singers who have turned their Back on Singing

Singing Teacher Brisbane

This is a little note for the singers those who grew up performing in choirs, eisteddfods, and/or community concerts.

Perhaps you were even a gigging singer, with a degree in music, and had aspirations of performing all around the world and becoming the next Lady Gaga.
 
But somewhere along the line, you stopped. Life got in the way.
 
Maybe you had a family or fell into a different career.
 
Maybe you had doubts about your ability and didn’t think you had the talent to pursue a career in it anyway.  
 
Perhaps your voice never felt quite ‘right’. Like, it was massive effort to sing, so why bother pursuing something that felt difficult.
 
So, you turned your back on your voice, your singing and your dreams.
 
This is what I did anyway.  
 
I grew up in Bundaberg and was always performing. I did my AMEB classical singing exams and I won the Senior Vocalist Prize at the eisteddfod. I was pretty convinced that I was going to become the next Maria Callas. After all, I was a quarter Greek. Maria and I practically had identical lives.  
 
As a 17-year-old, I auditioned for the Queensland Conservatorium of Music and got graded an ‘A’, which meant that I was a shoe in for the bachelor’s degree. My life was sorted.
 
When I received what I thought was going to be my acceptance letter, I was devastated to read ‘thanks but no thanks.’ I wasn’t going to the Con.
 
After a year of doing a performance course in Rockhampton, which I didn’t enjoy at all, I decided at 18 that I wasn’t cut out for this career and enrolled in a journalism degree. When I finished this, I found myself working in government and corporate media departments.
 
Years of getting stuck on the corporate treadmill followed, along with developing vocal nodules from singing in rock bands using incorrect vocal technique.  
 
Also, I got stuck in ‘paralysis by analysis’ land from not knowing where my voice sat in terms of genres. I couldn’t sing classical anymore, and after falling asleep in several operas decided that I didn’t want to follow in Maria’s footsteps after all.
 
I loved rock music but wasn’t convinced that my voice was suited to this either.
 
That’s when I stopped singing all together. It just felt too hard.
 
And I have to say, this left me bereft and sad.
 
To fill the void that singing left in my life, I decided to try jazz piano lessons. I had always loved jazz but in the past had never thought about learning it. So, this felt new and exciting.
 
Funnily enough, it was these lessons that led me back to singing again.
 
My piano teacher asked me to sing ‘Misty’ – the only jazz song I knew all the words to. I did and his enthusiasm for my voice but more so my love for the music, put me on the path that I am on now.  
 
I’m obviously taking a lot of short cuts with my story but since that day, I have become a professional singer with a Bachelor of Music in Jazz, which I received after a life-changing three years at the Jazz Music Institute (JMI). I ended up going to the Con to do my master’s degree and have sorted out my vocal issues with good technique practices and pathology. And as you know I’m a proud and passionate singing teacher.
 
Anyway, enough about me. I just want to say that even though you may have turned your back on singing, it hasn’t turned its back on you.
 
You will find your way back to singing again. I promise.
 
That’s all I’m going to say.
 
Lots of love
Mel X