“But why are you taking voice lessons?”
I get this question a lot. It’s usually followed by:
“You can sing.”
And, well, yes, I can. I’ve been singing for longer than I’ve been talking, or so my parents tell me, and it’s one of my favorite things in the world – to feel the music and create a moment and a memory.
But as with any skill, singing requires technique, patience, and practice, and the more diligent you are, the better you’ll become.
And I suppose that’s the simple answer to why I still take voice lessons. But I thought it would be interesting today to dig a little deeper. So, let’s get started.
I take lessons because I enjoy them.
I like learning. Even when it’s hard. Even when it knocks me down a peg. And the more I learn, the more I realize I still need to learn, and that’s exciting. Plus, I just like singing, and so it’s fun to set aside at least an hour every week that I know will be devoted to something I truly enjoy.
I take lessons because I am decidedly not an expert.
I started voice lessons when I was nine years old. I took them all throughout school, and then into college. And then I took a really long break. I decided that singing wasn’t what I wanted to do as a career, and I focused on other things. In the decade and change I wasn’t taking lessons, there were a lot of things I…well…forgot. Muscle memory fades, technique gets rusty. I’m not a bad singer, but I can be so much better, and I want to be.
I take lessons because it holds me accountable.
I’m going to tell you a shameful secret. Are you ready? Oh, God, I hate to admit it, but: I AM LAZY. Like, really, I’m terrible at deadlines, I really like naps, and I’m not great at motivating myself. I do it, and I work hard, but it’s a challenge. Having a teacher (an awesome one, I might add) who can keep me accountable and help me choose the right areas to focus on is just really invaluable, and it keeps me moving forward.
I take lessons because it makes a difference.
I get a little better with every vocal warm-up. I get a little better every time I master a difficult passage in a song. With every lesson, I get better. And the better I get, the happier I am. My voice is an instrument, just like a guitar or a piano. How I take care of it, and the love I give to it, matters.
I take lessons because there is always more to learn.
I mentioned this a little earlier, but I think it deserves a few more words. I will never know everything about how to be the best singer I can be. The more I learn, the better I get, the more that world will open up to me, and the more I’ll have to learn. And I think this is applicable in life, just generally. There is always, always more to learn, and I’m pretty satisfied knowing that I’ll be a perennial student. It makes me excited, knowing that I’m just one breakthrough away from the next life-changing piece of information.
I think that covers it pretty well, but now I’m curious. I’d love to know – do you have a skill you’re still working to hone? How do you approach it? What motivates you to keep learning?
A random post for a Monday, I know, and different from my usual content, but I hope you enjoyed it!