The Ripple Affect

Singing in a choir, or in the car, or on stage can do a great deal of healing in and of itself.  Singing with purpose and intent to connect to the self in a deeper way, through vibration, that’s a whole different level.

Singing for the purpose of healing and connection is more concerned with the inner world versus the outer world. The cause and effect of singing for the self versus the benefit of the audience.

For example, how does one note feel in my body? And where do I feel it? Does the note release any tension within me or does it tighten me? Can I connect with the ripple affect of how that note moved energy?  I wonder if I can find a note to make this pain in my shoulder release?

The sound of your voice is healing, not matter what you think of it.  Your judgement of it cancels the healing of it. It shuts it down. Judgement shuts down the ripple and release of the vibrational medicine that gets touched through the sound of your voice.

Your judgement and criticism of it stops this ripple and therefore stops the healing medicine.

This is a journey of discovery, to move the point of focus inwards from our outwards fixed gaze of approval. And this takes the time it takes. It is a practice of self-love and acceptance, to be sure.

How focus affects the sound of the voice

We can use the sound of our voice to increase our awareness of energy in a number of ways.   Over the years I have experimented with ways to help people to de-focus and soften their energy, or, to focus their energy more intently.   I use the analogy of a wide-angle lens on a camera that widens the view, or a tele-photo lens that narrows or helps to focus the view.

The sound of our voice always reflects the mind and our focus, so in understanding how to use our focus to connect with energy is a key to discovering our authentic voice and a voice that holds meaning as well as spaciousness.

Like the wide-angle lens of a camera we can move our awareness outwards to hold a wider energy field or inwards to focus in on a narrower part of the energy field.   This wide-angle lens of awareness gives us a wider view of ourselves and our environment that we are in and the tele-photo lens moves us closer to our physical body or to whatever is right in front of us.  We need both lens of awareness to balance the focus in our voice.

Over the years I have I have found that my students are split into two groups; people that are very focused, or over-focused, and people that are under-focused.

A voice that is over-focused can sound controlled, thin and rigid.  This voice is caught is a tele-photo lens of awareness without the vision of the wide-angle lens.  A voice that is under-focused can sound unclear and without intent or meaning.  This voice is caught in a wide-angle lens of awareness with no access to the point of focus straight in front of them.

In this moment while you are reading this try becoming aware of what is right in front of you and narrow your field of vision.  You might be able to feel how the energy focuses and solidifies.  I sometimes invite people to ‘envision a flickering candle and attempt to keep it still’.  Now move your focus outwards to the peripheral vision, your wide-angle lens of awareness and feel how the energy widens.  These movement with your focus or your awareness will also change the sound of your voice.

Overtime you may be able to feel the energy within you either become more dense and contained, or, expand and become wider.

The wide-angle lens awareness brings a spaciousness to energy and spreads out the energy-in-motion, the emotions.  Like the phrase ‘holding space‘, your awareness is doing this for your energy.   You can think of this lens like a big body of water,  a lake, or an ocean, and the tele-photo lens of awareness the rapidly moving waters that run from that lake.   These rapids become focussed water.

The problem arises when both lens’ separate from each other.  The wide-angle space awareness is cut off from the narrow focus of the tele-photo lens, and visa versa.

Moving the focus back and forth to wide-angle and tele-photo helps to strengthen a sort of vibrational membrane, a flexibility within your energy body.  This develops a stronger sense of the present moment which of course is reflected in the voice.  The bones and the flesh within you and the space you are singing in. 

When we move back and forth with our awareness we begin to awaken sleepy parts  of our body one part at a time until there is a tipping point whereby the parts of our body connect and light each other up.  Like puzzle pieces coming together to show the whole puzzle.

The whole body is the sum of the parts but first we must separate and then unite. This unification of the being occurs as the light grows, as the vibrational membrane strengthens it just naturally lights up the whole of us,  piece by piece.  Then the sound of our voice can light up more of our field.  It’s like letting go of control.  We are allowing our light to penetrate through us and outwards.

It is important to note that as we move closer to ourselves, to our earthly bones and fleshy bodies, we will meet more and more emotion that has been held out of our awareness.   And alternatively as we move outwards we will meet more of our beautiful expansion and grow out and up, which has it’s own challenge to say the least.

As we move into different areas where your body has been holding some emotion, freezing and trauma, the vibration can work to dislodge the grip your mind has on protecting you from feeling whatever was not felt.  We touch ourselves with our voice and the defences soften us towards feeling. Then we can be present with what shows up and let it do what it needs to do if we stay present with the energy.  Sometimes being present is enough, and sometimes we need to allow a deeper release through crying, anger, fear or sadness.

As the poet Rumi says, “This joy, this sadness, these dark thoughts and this shame, welcome them in.”

So what is the goal of all of this? The experience of wholeness in one note.  The sound of being in the present moment and having this ripple outwards creating more and more light, love and presence in our lives.  It’s real and I experience it.

Use the sound of your voice to become aware of your body’s field, or your body of water, and then to focus your voice through and intention of what sound you wish to create.    Experiment with pitch, colour and intensity with every note you sing.

When the talent show ends…the Performer and the Natural Child

Rebecca was such an adorable child, so bright and filled with joy and enthusiasm, and what a voice she had!  She sang freely without a care in the world and singing to her was as natural as breathing.  From the first time her parents heard her singing they could not believe how beautiful her voice was, it gave them shivers.  Every time she sang they were more and more amazed. One day they asked the neighbours over for her to sing for them, and they were in awe as well, “she’s so talented!”  Rebecca could see how happy she was making them and this made her feel very special indeed.


As she grew older she knew she had a special talent, her voice, but secretly she knew she had an even greater power; the power to get love and attention by singing and Performing.  Her secret powers worked like a charm when her voice felt free and shined in all its glory, but when her voice was less than perfect she didn’t get the same reactions from them, she could tell they were not as happy, and so she worked harder and harder to make them happy.

If there is and was a loving audience of parents, family and community who could hold the child in this natural capacity of joy and exuberance without labeling them as being ‘talented‘, but just being who they naturally are, then the child will grow up with the Performer integrated within them in a healthy, balanced manner.  The adult will be able to belong and be held in a community without Performing or needing to stand out to belong.  They will be equally as comfortable standing out as standing back.

joyous child exhibiting natural gifts that grew up within a healthy environment with supportive parents is able to separate their special talents and gifts from their self worth, knowing they are special just as they are.  In contrast, a child like Rebecca had to develop a Performer personality to work for her to get the love she needed to survive and thrive in her life.  This Performer personality protected Rebecca’s vulnerability and innocence which was not protected or respected by her parents, and this is all too common.

The Performer might have developed at an early stage in our lives through dance classes, singing, painting etc, or even just by doing talent shows in front of our parents.  At this young developmental stage the Performer personality was not yet present as a separate self needing anything, but present as a healthy natural need to be seen and heard in having vitality, joy and love for life.

Being seen and heard can be wonderful if when the talent show ends the child’s talents don’t get taken up as a ‘cause or a mission‘ by the parents to get them out there to be seen by others through competitions etc. Respecting the child’s wishes, not talents, first and foremost.  At a certain time in the development of the child the parents and the child can talk about this step of ‘exposure‘ to perform outside the home and if the child wishes to have this experience at all.  And this is also taking into consideration that there is a maturity level within the child that can even assess the situation at all, which is somewhat doubtful.  When appropriate protection of the child is not respected then it can develop a life long injury of Performing for Love and validation that might never be undone.

We all need to be seen and heard and to know that we can exist just as we are and not by performing to get love.  As a voice teacher and facilitator I witness this childhood injury playing over and over in so many people.  From young to old, from men and women this Performer injury exhibits itself as needing to prove something to the audience (aka the parents) and community.  To prove once and for all that they, the child, is loveable and special.  The Performers job is to get this love through whatever talents were applauded back then in their early years.  Only now, the Natural expression of the innocent child is enmeshed and entangled together with the Performer and seems forever undoable.

Rebecca’s healing as an adult will be to unwind this enmeshment of Performer and the Natural Child and to replace the Performer with the Protector energy bringing the Performer back into a healthy balance.  

This is the work I have been doing for myself and for others in my classes and workshops for many many moons.  Helping to heal the relationship between the Performer and the audience. To bring Protection to where there might have been an over-exposure from the over-worked Performer who is just trying to do his or her job.  And to return again and again to the Natural Child who is innocent, vulnerable and Protected from harm.

“This holy ground in me, innocent, wild and free.”