1) Take a deep breath in.
2) F'in do it.
That's it. What is it you most desperately afraid to do but just thinking about said thing gives you this little pit in the bottom of your stomach that is actually pent up self-expression or perhaps even your entire soul spinning in circles and loop de loops? Like the feeling you got in middle school right before you called a boy (or girl, whatever the case may be) to ask them to go to the ice skating rink or the mall or wherever it is you were allowed to hang out unsupervised. The feeling you got right before you asked someone to prom. The feeling you got just before you opened your college acceptance (or denial) letter. That feeling when the phone rings two days after the interview you had for your dream job. That feeling as you dropped down on one knee with a diamond-filled box in your sweaty palm.
And yah, maybe it's not always AS momentous as the ice skating rink in middle school (or asking someone to marry you...a close second on the "growing a pair" scale), but it still feels big. Scary. Risky. You might soar like a German soccer player sprinting to the center of the field to jump in a big celebratory Gatorade-drenched mosh pit or you might slink off into the dimly lit Argentinian locker room feeling like someone scooped your soul out with a plastic spoon.
I could go on to repeat that analogy about "stepping onto the field" but we've all heard that one before.
How about stepping into your LIFE. For real. We all have a life sentence. We're here, living, until we die. There is no question about that. The only question is if you will really be present. Will you really present yourself. Your whole self. I'm not talking about checking off a mundane bucket list of trips you want to take and monuments you want to see or getting to meet Oprah (although meeting Oprah might allow me to die just a smidge happier).
I'm talking about doing the scariest shit you can think of because you're serving life with no possibility of parole and you know what? Just like those really bad ass bitches on Orange is the New Black, you ain't got nothing to lose. Other than maybe a little "face". Your pride. Your comfortability level.
|Patron saint of bad-ass life sentence serving BI's everywhere|
And when you really truly think about it, you don't want those things that much anyway. You cling to them because stasis is always easier than change, but if someone was like hey, you can either have, 1) one of your dreams come true or, 2) stay really safe and have no one look at you or judge you or write nasty things about you in the comments at the bottom of your blog (while you're off not giving an F because your dream just came true) I'm gonna guess you'll go with what's behind door number one.
All you have to do is....big breath in...hold it...wait for it wait for it wait for wait for it...big breath out...and GO!
Without further ado, here's a link to my singing debut (don't worry- it's Kirtan "light"):
https://drive.google.com/a/thesocialsutras.com/file/d/0B7l29NEfKvZRdHBjRlNRSnI3N0E/edit?usp=sharing (...you must copy and paste, then download the 3MB file).
First time recording myself in over 12 years. And my first live performance (if you don't count karaoke) in over 11...Last time was at "Showtime at the Apollo" in 2003. Why? I got scared. And the longer I waited, the weirder it got to sing again. Until suddenly a decade had passed and I had to muster up all the courage to do it again. It doesn't matter how long you've hesitated. How many times you planned to then didn't. Or how many times you tried and failed. That crap only matters to your ego.
If you're in NOLA you can also see me and my new yet dear friend, and fellow possessor of large-ish kahunas singing our terrified little hearts out tonight at Buffa's. Totally not ice-skating-rink-in-middle-school worthy material but still a helluva lot ballsier than clapping along from a bar stool.