In my recent journey in my body and voice, things have gotten a little tense. After an injury sent my back into chaos, all my muscles ganged up and decided to protect me by building a rock-solid wall around my ribcage. I couldn’t breathe, and I couldn’t sing. Thanks to the amazing physiotherapists and other body-mechanic magicians in my life, I have been able to start training my insides to do the jobs they were made for and I’m on the mend, and my breath and voice are returning. (exhale)
If you’re anything like me, you want to get things – get them quickly, get them right, and the best way to do that is to push really hard right from the start. Force it to work NOW. My son sometimes approaches his piano practice this way, and his understandable frustration is the embodiment of why this tactic does not work. Slow and steady wins the race.
When you are learning a new lick, a new chord, a new strum, a new song, don’t be afraid to take it easy and slow. Be patient with yourself and give it time. Give it time in both senses – allow yourself to linger over the practice so that it comes together BUT you must make the time to make that practice happen. Nobody’s in a hurry. It’s all good.
Then, just like my body needing to take small, gentle steps back to health, your music and ability will grow to a place where it’s just like breathing. Exhale.