Mindful singing brings a multitude of benefits, says Jeremy D ion. We all connect to music differently–find your own path and see what happens.
As you read the following list of ways to create your own path to mindful singing, I encourage you to pay attention to both types of charged reactions – notice those things you are inherently drawn to, as well as those that instantly frighten or repel you. Both likely hold something worthy of a second look.
The following is a small sample of ways to take mindful singing further:
1 TAKE VOCAL LESSONS
It’s humbling to put our voices out there, but if we can move our egos aside, learning from a trained professional can make for stronger and more finely controlled singing voices.
2 WRITE A SONG
Or several. There are many ways to begin and it’s not as hard as you think.
3 DO DAILY EXERCISES
To strengthen your control over your singing muscles. You’ll find plenty on the internet to get you started.
4 LEARN AN INSTRUMENT
So you can accompany yourself as you sing, and so you can play with others.
5 READ POETRY
Exposing yourself to the beauty and magic of the written word, feeling the rhythm of the phrase, the sound of the vowels; these are good things for our musical soul.
6 EXPOSE YOURSELF TO NEW MUSIC
Search the internet, ask your friends, even your kids. More people are making and recording music than ever before and you have access to most of it. Regardless of the type of music that you love, the odds are good that there are plenty of contemporary musicians you have never heard of who are making the kind of music you would absolutely enjoy.
7 GO AND LISTEN TO LIVE MUSIC
Even if seeing live music isn’t your thing or they don’t play the kind of music you like where you live, I still urge you to go. Attend a performance, enjoy the street musicians, just expose yourself to a live human being making music in the moment. Let yourself be moved by that. Connecting through music is healing.
8 LISTEN TO A CAPPELLA MUSIC
Listen to the amazing sounds the singers get from their voices. If you can hear them, learn to sing harmony lines in addition to the main melody.
9 TRAIN YOUR EAR
There are a variety of online apps and resources available to help. The better our ear, the more likely we are to sing on pitch.
10 TIBETAN SINGING BOWLS
Explore the wonders of Tibetan singing bowls as a sonic combination of mindfulness, breath and sound (see our feature on page 28 for more).
11 MEDITATE – YOU WON’T REGRET IT
To paraphrase author Dr Wayne Dyer, sit quietly for ten minutes once every day. And if you’re too busy for that, do it twice a day.
12 START HOSTING YOUR OWN MUSIC NIGHT
In your home, even if it’s just two or three friends who sing or play an instrument. Share songs, sing songs or take turns sharing recordings of your favourite songs.