I am almost pretty certain that all of us have a hidden talent – that gem of information that only gets shared at an ice breaker at work of drunk with a group of friends. What I want to know is – why are they hidden away so often?!
I can’t seem to get my head around why we get embarrassed about being openly proud of our passions and talents. Is it down to personal anxieties around fear of judgement or is it just a really polite British thing? I have realised I am guilty of constantly doing this and I think it is time I made a change!
As I want to raise as much money as possible for South East and Central Essex Mind whilst training for my Ironman I thought – why not combine two of the things I love and put on a fundraising event. Here the idea for the Afternoon at the Musicals concert with my choir, Chorus Sirenum, was born.
It was perfect – I love singing, I love musicals and it gives me the chance to sing a proper solo for the first time in about seven years.
The choir was on board, I had singing lesson booked and a venue for us all to sing.
You may be thinking – “ooo what a lovely idea. When is it?” Well, funny story that.. it happened on 16th July.. I didn’t advertise it out on my blog or social media accounts.
WHY on earth did I do that?!
Here are just a handful of my anxiety fueled reasons why:
- I didn’t think people would want to come
- I didn’t think people would enjoy the music
- I was nervous I’d mess up my solo and everyone would laugh at me
- I thought people wouldn’t come and see a choir sing
- I didn’t think that people would want to give their Sunday afternoon up for it, so why bother asking
- I thought people would find the whole think a bit awkward and embarrassing
I could go on…
There is a consistent theme running through all those statements and that is the word ‘I’. I was the only person thinking these things and it is only now that the concert has been and gone that I have realised how irrational these thoughts were. The concert was a success and after posting a video of my singing on Facebook – funnily enough people didn’t have anything negative to say about it.
Fear not – it wasn’t kept a complete secret and we managed to raise a brilliant £821 with the event 🙂
One thing that I heard from a lot of people was this – “is there anything you can’t do well?! How do you do it?!”
My answer to this would be yes there are a lot of things that I can’t do well – triathlon being one of them. I am no Brownlee brother, but I enjoy it and work really hard to do the best I can.
So how do you get over these fears and put yourself outside your comfort zone?
I am a great believer that you can do anything you set your mind to – all it takes is motivation and hard work.
I only started doing triathlon two years ago – before that I was a complete coach potato and just the thought of exercise gave me palpitations.
Similarly, before the concert I hadn’t performed properly for a good eight years and to say I was rusty was an understatement. The only singing (screeching) I had done was in the car to and from work to prevent a mental breakdown from the traffic on the A13.
So I thought to myself – what if I apply the same effort I have put into my fitness to singing? I booked in a singing lesson. I can tell you it wasn’t easy. I find it extremely uncomfortable singing in front of people and I left many lessons in just as much of a sweaty mess as I have my training sessions due to my nerves.
What you saw at the concert and on Facebook is a result of weeks of singing lessons – that I can tell you were not always easy. But, with the ever so patient Olly, he helped me gain the confidence to sing that song and at least appear confident when performing it in front of people! (Coincidentally, if you are able to get to Southend and would like singing lessons please get in touch. Olly is fab and if he can put up with teaching me – you will be fine.. trust me..)
Never look at something and think that it is out of your reach. If you want to give something a go then do it, give it a go. If you work hard enough and do it with a smile then you will soon convince others you are the bee knees!