The Transformational Practice of Singing Out Loud

Singing out loud is my favorite. I’ve always been a singer. Regardless of how others feel about my singing, singing out loud is what I do.

Singing Out Loud

Hell, when I was in elementary school, I wanted nothing more than to be a Broadway singer. My parents didn’t encourage that dream, maybe envisioning the crazy success I’d have someday as an underpaid academic with heartburn and a terrible caffeine addiction.

Thanks, Mom and Dad. It’s not like I’m hella multiethnic and would’ve made a fantastic addition to the cast of Hamilton or anything.

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But even so, I never stopped singing out loud.

I would like to state before I get any further that I’m not particularly great at singing. In fact, one could probably make the argument that I’m on the not-so-great end of the spectrum. And truth be told, I don’t think I’m that fantastic either. But that’s not a big deal to me.

BECAUSE I LIKE SINGING OUT LOUD.

See, I have this terrible problem where my self-confidence is always round about 200% higher than it should be. Generally, this enables me to do things that should be out of my comfort zone, but are not because I’m so incredibly full of myself.

(It’s worth noting here that it also leads to some pretty earth-shattering lows as well. For example, I think I’m the most brilliant person in the world. Then, when I say something incredibly stupid and I’m called out on it, it’s a very big blow to my ego. Similarly, I have a very particular type of body dysmorphia that makes me think I’m super hot. Then, I find myself trying on bikinis under the florescent lights of a fitting room only to realize that I’m not, in fact, photoshopped.)

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But even so, I still love singing out loud.

And since I now officially live alone, my love for singing out loud has tripled at the very least. In the morning, when I’m putting on my makeup, I sing along to singer songwritery-types. When I walk Rosie, I sing what I can only imagine Freddie Mercury intended to write — “Some puppy to love.” When I do laundry, I really enjoy yodeling into the back of the dryer. (If you haven’t tried this, please do so  immediately.) And, of course, when I’m grading papers, I sing every last song from West Side Story. (That’s my grading soundtrack. I don’t know why.)

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But I’ve been thinking about singing a lot lately, about how I spent a lot of years in choir trying to make my voice blend in, and about how I spent the majority of my life not singing out loud because so many people have criticized my general inability to hit, like, 80% of the notes in any given song. (Freakin’ haters.)

But then, I think about how happy singing makes me — like 2.67 times happier than I would be without it — and then I just don’t care how others feel about it.

(I realize there are a lot of numbers and percentages in this post. Please take these with at least 4 grains of salt. I haven’t done any actual calculations. But I’m sure you could easily do a Google search and find that someone has done the scientific study that proves singing is just good for you.)

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So here’s my challenge to you this weekend:

Sing.

Just anything. Anywhere. At any given time.

(Don’t be like me and accidentally find yourself belting out a supercut of all The Hold Steady songs in the cereal aisle of the grocery store while a confused old lady watches. That is level two of the transformational practice of singing out loud. You aren’t there yet. Start small.)

I promise you’ll enjoy it.

Thanks for sharing!
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12 comments

  1. I LOVE THIS POST. THANK YOU FOR THIS QUALITY CONTENT.

  2. Singin IS the best. Have you ever thought about joining the OU community choir? If I had more time I would totally do it. I miss those days of singing with really great musicians. Not that my church choir isn’t great, but it’s not the same.

  3. I like to sing loud in the car especially on the way to work work, before I’ve had enough coffee and I’ve got a bit of sleep smokiness in my voice. I am epic

    • Ooooh! I bet you sound hella rock and roll. And singing on your way to work is the best way to get super jacked up.

  4. As someone who is also constantly singing, this should be an easy weekend challenge. Ha! Never yodeled much, though, so maybe I should try that….

  5. People on my commute to work get a show every morning. It might be LL Cool J, Hamilton, Stevie Nicks, George Strait or Klymaxx. I’m singing. And dancing. And killing it. Last phrase open to interpretation.

  6. Love this post. Singing is my 2nd favorite thing to do( I was total choir geek)aside from dancing.
    I’ve been doing more singing since reading this post, and I’m sure my upstairs neighbor is pleased* with my efforts.

    *pleased=not at all. He plays his music with terrible bass on his stereo, so I’d say we’re even.

    • Ha! I mean, it sounds like he deserves every last serenade you send his way. And 3 cheers for choir geeks!

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