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For Tips, Tricks and Tools, visit the studio BLOG (click link on the Sidebar)

 
I'm excited to announce that I moved the studio to Blogger.com. 
A link to the blog  is on my Sidebar here.  I invite you to visit me there & CLICK to 'follow' my adventures.  I'll do my best to learn fast & provide helpful tips, tricks and tools for singers!

posted May 11, 2010, 9:54 PM by Connie Castro   [ updated May 11, 2010, 10:15 PM ]

Developing Your "Super Powers"

posted May 6, 2010, 10:15 AM by Connie Castro

I meet with three dear friends each week to discuss LIFE & how we're doing in our living of It. One of these lovely ladies likes to speak of her specific skills as, "this is one of my Super Powers". Just like Wonder Woman! I learn alot from these three women.

I also learn alot from teaching. I've learned that I actually love learning new things, organizing them & breaking down concepts into easy steps. Then I get to share & assist others on how to use these steps, tools & techniques. I especially love 'ah ha' moments of insight--those flashes that come in a lesson & are always right on. I try hard to follow those 'ah ha's'. Organizing, Sharing & Listening with my intuition are 3 of my Super Powers.

For the past 10 years, my students have also been teaching me many things & bringing their Super Powers into the studio. Today I want to share a few of these lessons that I am exceptionally grateful for.

Many students come for voice/piano lessons because they do not feel competent 'enough' in some way unique to them. They are almost always more competent than they think. They just don't consciously know how much they actually know. It's fun to do an accounting of their skills with them. They are usually so surprised. The keys to the rest of the process are mostly about: 1) allowing yourself to be an open beginner and 2) showing up---not necessarily in that order.

Often a 'natural gift' is truly a mixed blessing. You're a good singer---everyone tells you so. That's the positive half of your gift... Having a BEGINNER'S MIND can be hard work for good singers. Practicing when you're already good can be even harder. I know this from personal experience & had to hear it from multiple sources before I could open to the Beginner's Mind. Those gifted individuals who can overlook their natural talent & keep a BEGINNER'S MIND definitely can count that as a 'Super Power'. There will always be more to learn, vocal stress to recover from & new styles to try. Beginning singers usually have this SP from the get-go. They don't yet have a 'vocal image' of themselves that they're attached to & need to set aside for something new & better.

COURAGE is also another Super Power that all students walk into my studio with. A student who has a vocal injury & is desperate to recover; a student who is singing publically for the first time at a friend's June wedding; a student with a history of verbal abuse about their singing that shut them up good and tight until something pushed them to say 'no more'; a student who is compared to their 'musically gifted' sibling; a student suffering from clinical depression, divorce, widowhood or any number of life's dark nights that push us in new directions. Even the 8 yr old who 'just loves to sing' shows courage when she tells Mom to wait in the next room & claims her lesson time as her own. (Notice that I didn't even mention the courage needed to step on a stage & share your music. That's pretty far down the list of courageous activities, all things considered above. Or, more like icing on a cake.)

Remember back in paragraph four I said that the key to the rest is being a beginner & showing up (yes, I'll wait--scroll up & check). SHOWING UP is a huge Super Power. In every endeavor humanly possible to attempt, SHOWING UP is critical. If you don't show up, you don't have a chance of success. If you give up when the going gets tough, you end your chances of success. If you don't show up, you give yourself the message that you are not capable, not competent, not good enough. That's a terrible message to take in. Even lucky people aren't more lucky than you or I...they are just more persistent! They don't give up. (Yes, read 'The Luck Factor'). If you choose SHOWING UP as one of your top Super Powers, your odds of success are great in any endeavor!

The last Super Power of this article is OPTIMISM. Yes, you can do it. Yes, you are enough. Yes, you've struggled in the past but you are now taking charge & creating a new way for yourself. Lots of things are hard. Yes, you will fail at times, no matter how much you prepare & show up. That doesn't matter, you'll learn from it.

Our biggest task is to find the blessings in our mistakes, mis-steps & mishaps--& all those things that happen that we have no control over. Security is a myth and control is truly an illusion. That is a very freeing Statement of Truth to remember! Another thing to remember is that most people are focused on themselves & don't carry YOUR stumbling lyrics out of the concert hall with them at the end of your show. They think, "wow, I wish I had that much courage to stand on stage & share a song" or "Gee, I wish I had showed up for my lessons so I could play/sing like that" or "Darn, I forgot to thaw the roast for dinner...now what'll we do?" Get my drift???

Have fun celebrating all that you do well. Choose to learn from the things that don't turn out like you wanted--without beating yourself up. Remember, many mistakes lead to new opportunities, so keep a BEGINNER'S MIND open for the new opportunities, COURAGEOUSLY SHOW UP with your wonderful OPTIMISM smiling all over your face, & let your light shine all the way to the achievement of your dreams!

Connie's Original Song Published!

posted Jan 15, 2010, 8:33 PM by Connie Castro   [ updated Jan 17, 2010, 7:17 PM ]

One of my original songs, "Oneness",  from my Inspirae CD was recently published in the New Thought songbook, "Can I Get An Amen!"  I'm honored to have been asked to submit my work, and even more honored to have been selected! 
 
I have uploaded an mp3 of the chant on Facebook.  Click the Facebook Link in the Navigation Bar (on the left side of this page) to go there.  The song can be accessed through the Nav Bar on the left side of my Facebook Connie Castro Music Studio page! 
 
I hope you enjoy it!

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