E033 - About Awaken Your Radiant Voice

Awaken Your Radiant Voice is my 9 week signature online course for liberating voices. If you're curious about what and how I teach, and what it can do for your voice, enjoy the blog or watch the episode!

So in this video, I'm going to be diving a little deep into Awaken Your Radiant Voice, the beautiful nine week online course that I facilitate.

Now before you run for the hills, I'm going to make this kind of interesting, and I really want to just talk from my heart about what this course is, what it does, and why I love teaching it.

So I'm just going to make a bold claim here: what it aims to do is change the course of a person's life through their voice, through unblocking their voice. Now you know it's incredible the degree to which our voices determine what happens in our lives –  when we go to a party, or when we're in a work meeting, or whether we show up in the world being willing to say, "Hey, this is what I do, this is what I care for," or whether we often hide instead. And a lot of us just hide and it could be hiding online, or it could be hiding in meetings. Or it could be the opposite issue, where we blurt and are accused of being "too much", which is usually followed by withdrawing and shut down.

So the object of this course is to work at a number of different levels, and it's really not just about developing a good confident voice, but something much, much deeper. And really what I'm looking for, and what I hope my students are looking for is to develop a deeply heart-centred, grounded, empowered voice – one where we're capable of showing up in the world in ways that we would never have considered possible before. You could say that a 'flowering' will take place where we start to let ourselves be who we really are out in the world – let people see who we are.

We just do it because we feel okay with it, where before we were shut down and afraid, and... the underlying thought-form is "what will they say"? And one of the byproducts of vocal liberation is joy and freedom. Think about a four or five year old little child, and they're expressing their crazy with abandon, and they are just being their beautiful, quirky, weird selves. And then they start shutting down, they become an awkward teenager, then they become an adult and they become incredibly serious.

And we take very seriously what other people think of us, and we're... to tell the truth, we're mortally afraid of what other people will say about us. And so the journey back into developing a voice that CAN is also a journey of joy and freedom. Of learning to care less, learning to be a bit of a fool, but a heart-centered fool (and one who's willing to show up and have courage).

I deeply care about all of this, for me this is really beautiful. And this is relevant to you if you're watching this, if your speaking voice or your singing voice is shut down. Now you might find that you are what I call a "blurt and hurt" person (a 'too much voice')... you blurt, and you've hurt someone and then you shut down and feel bad, and feel ashamed. And so the cycle continues.

Or, when there's heat or an argument happening you just shut down, withdraw, freeze and you're just disappearing all the time. And you might be a hybrid of these two, most of the voices have elements of both, but your voice causes you issues, so you're completely in the right place if any of this resonates with you, or and you have issues with your singing voice. You're ashamed of letting it out, you're not sure if you can sing in tune, you're desperately afraid of groups of people, speaking or singing to them.

So there's this kind of dysregulation in your voice, you could say there's a deep dysregulation in your ventral vagal nervous system, which is part of what creates a feeling of safety with each other. So it's a really deep topic, I'm not going to go into the neuroscience, but there's a lot of very interesting research into this aspect.

So I just want to talk about some of the foundations in your Awaken Your Radiant Voice: one, safety. So the job in the course is to create more safety for your voice than you ever experienced in your family or with your friends, or definitely on the internet. And so that we can discover what it feels like to feel safe to let your voice out freely. We create a baseline of "Oh, this is what my voice is like when I feel safe"! And then we can start learning what our voice sounds like when we feel safe, and then we start building that safe voice up into one you can trust.

We also learn what the dysregulation really looks and feels like: so you just think "I've got a shut down voice" or "I'm terrified in groups of people", but you're not specific, there's really specific data we need about your voice. If I put you on a stage in front of 50 people and asked you to sing a song, your body would go into a shock, but I want to know where, what's happening with your heart and your chest. What's happening in your solar plexus, does it go into a ball? Is it a really tense, or is it moving, what's happening in your stomach? Do you feel like you're checking out or do you start getting angry or do you start getting sad? Do you freeze, do you want to run out of the building?

Every little piece of data is specific to the dysregulation that is sitting hardwired in your nervous system. So one of the foundations is becoming deeply body aware, what's called somatically aware. Using deep body awareness, we start to use that  awareness to help us make decisions in the moment about what to do about our dysregulation.

As I start feeling my voice shut down, I can start working with it, I can start regulating. I can start self-regulating my nervous system, and then I can start co-regulate my nervous system with other nervous systems. It's beautiful work.

A huge other component of it is awareness. Becoming awake and aware. So the way that our dysregulation happens is through our conditioning – it started in our developmental years as a child. We develop these patterns through being with our parents and in our family environments. And then at school, we become hardwired and these conditions become what we think is our personality.

So one of the things we focus on ion the course is to wake up our awareness out of this conditioning, out of, "Oh, this is who I am and I'm going to be like this forever... and this is all I ever know, I'm always going to be shut down and they always say this to me, and I hate it when they do that. And I hate myself when I'd get small like this". And so we become conscious of when we are stuck deeply in 'the story of me', in what you might call the tiny frame of our conditioning."

What happens if we let go of that frame and move into a deeper awareness? Where we get into the body, but we open up into a much bigger, wider view? And the truth is we can shift our awareness for example, from what we might call the inner narrative, or the "problem solver", where everything is so intense and so stuck and seems so real, and we drop the mental narrative and move to somewhere deeper and more connected inside. And we learn to speak from a different place.

And we can do that now – shift a little deeper, so deepening our body awareness, moving into the heart a little bit; softening, being a little bit more vulnerable and open with each other. These are all choices, and they'll even change the way it feels for you as the reader to feel yourself soften and drop in, and just let yourself be seen and felt.

Let's take a breath together. So a foundation is shifting awareness, becoming conscious of where is my awareness and then choosing to move it to somewhere sweeter. Moving it somewhere that feels better.

Another big foundation of this is also technique and unlearning whatever came before. So you've got this wiring in your nervous system of "how I speak", and "this is what happens when I'm in front of a group of people", or "this is what happens socially" or "this is what happens when I get on my phone, and I'm about to post and, the fear starts happening" or "what are they going to think?" starts happening.

And we start working on techniques that will change the neurophysiological wiring, the musculature, the nervous system in your speech and singing patterns. But you need technique, you've got to learn something – you'll learn something new to undo the past.

And then during the nine weeks of the course, we practice and we use your neuroplasticity, that's your brain's ability to create new neural pathways, that are a completely new foundations for speaking and singing (and for showing up with each other). We are creating new pathways like "hey! I feel okay being me in front of the internet! And in fact I welcome you all into my space!"

We also work at the behavioral level – in other words creating new behaviors as much as possible in the nine weeks (and then afterwards too). We intend to turn these into what you might even call personality changes – confidence increases, levels of joy rise.

Yeah, so I love facilitating this course, I love teaching this course, I'm deeply invested in every student in it, in every one of their journeys and I'll talk a little bit more about that in a moment.

Structurally it's nine weeks long, it could be nine years long or nine months, but we have nine weeks and we go in deep in that time. And there's seven modules of content that get released during the nine weeks. There are two what I'd call "integration weeks" just because everyone needs more time to digest and integrate the material. This course is dense and intense but you can also take it at your own pace.

So every Thursday a module gets released, and it has four to seven lessons per module. The lessons are all focused on the foundations of:

  • singing
  • speaking
  • your soma (your connection to your body)
  • awareness (in other words, how am I aware?)
  • technical and educational aspects to study, build, and practice this new way of using your voice.

To study and practice this new voice, each module builds on the last. So we keep building the foundation but we need the first module to even ground you in the basics of it, but by module seven, we're really looking at really deep, connected, powerful, self-expression.

Now on a behavioral level, we practice interaction and building safety in the group through Zoom and Facebook work. Now this terrifies some people, and what I'm going to say is there are some students who keep their camera off for most of the course or even all of the course. The most beautiful thing, many keeps their camera on and unmuted all the way through, it depends on the person and I encourage people to do what feels safe for them. But the number of times a student has, for example not shown up at the Zoom sessions, 'cause they're terrified, but shown up after five weeks with their camera off and the sound muted, and terror in their bones, and they've listened to everyone being authentic and vulnerable and working in the group, and they've sat crying with their camera off, muted crying in joy and recognition at the safety they see in the group. And maybe that that week they don't say anything, and then the next week they type in the comments section just to say hi, and then a week later they've got their camera on and then boom, they begin to thrive and it's just the most beautiful thing. So the Zoom work and the group work is an important component.

There's also bonus, which is a "Liberate Your Online Voice", so really focused on those of us who need to show up online in our business or with our kind of creativity or the way we want to serve in the world and getting through the shame and shut down and fear and ambivalence about being online.

So that's also a component, now, one of the biggest reasons why people don't do the course is they are absolutely terrified or they're terrified, and I just going to to honor that, the reason why they're terrified is that being in groups and facing this is the most frightening thing possible. In other words, what happens if I face my vocal wounding, my vocal blocks? I'll fall apart, this is too much, and I'm just going to say that the space is designed to be safe and hold space for exactly you, if that's you. And I really respect and understand that terror, and my job is to make it okay, is to make it safe for you. And really there's an invitation for anyone who does feel like that to go to my website, book a discovery call, and just talk with me if they want to understand more.

I'm going to say there's a beautiful quote by Thomas Hubl. That is, "What appears to be in the way, is the way." And in other words, we have to go through and all of the joy we're looking for, and the confidence we're looking for, and the fun and the life that we always wanted, we have to go through our wounding, and if this is your wounding I really recommend going through it. If you want to know how that's worked out for other people, who were terrified, couldn't turn on their cameras, all of those kinds of things, go to the testimonials that are on my website, I'll put a link to that below, just for ordinary people's stories of overcoming this. People who couldn't turn their cameras on, and now are being, you know, now are just full of confidence and are a joy to behold, you know, the evolution over nine weeks and after is just, and as a facilitator it makes me emotional, I love it so much, it's so deep and so beautiful. And yeah, I just get to love everyone in it and watch them grow and heal and it's beautiful.

So needless to say, I love facilitating this course, I care about it and yeah, it's heart and soul work. It's me following I don't know if we have a purpose per se, it's me following life, or flow it's me doing what I love It's me having a good time. So, and really to saying, yeah I suppose you could call it an act of service or showing up in the world, but that's what this vocal program is about.

It's about building a voice that's more than just about me and my confidence, and now I can sell people things, and now I can be awesome and everyone can approve of me, it's much deeper, this is heart work and developing a confident, joyful voice that can show up and potentially show up to be hopefully helpful to other humans, and just kind of help clean up on this planet while having fun, being playful, not taking ourselves too seriously, because that is also the enemy of a free voice. We want to just lighten up a little bit, but also treat ourselves with gentleness and love, and just rediscover the joy, that's actually just sitting in our body.

And the materials there that you can keep practicing and studying for years to come. Yeah, so that's Awaken Your Radiant Voice, if you've got any questions, I've never done a video / blog exactly like this, so I'm doing one today, please message me with any comments or questions.

And if you're interested in joining the course, right now it's open, but whenever you read this it might not be open for booking, there's usually just a two week window open for booking a few times a year. So click this link to have a look and just read about it and all the things. And if this is not for you, thanks for reading it anyway. This course isn't for everyone, it's very specifically aimed at people who feel, "Ah, he's talking about me."

If I'm talking to you and it feels like it's about you, get in there and go and look at the testimonials and read the course outline and reach out to me if you have got terror in your bones, but you want to feel joy in your bones.

Okay, thanks for reading!

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Course commences 16th July 2020