Do You Pay Attention to These Three Parts of Your Singing Voice?
Do you just love to sing? I mean, is singing the first thing on your mind in the morning and the last thing at night? If you can answer yes to those questions, you might be what’s known as (cue the Star Wars theme music, maestro)…a singer. Symptoms may include: rocking your head to a favorite song as you sing along while driving down the road…or…an unbalanced addiction to karaoke parties…or…a tendency to sing along with songs you don’t even know just because you can. I’d like to encourage you to never stop singing. And I’d also like you to be aware of three vital parts of your singing voice, you might be neglecting, so you never have to stop singing.
I want you to imagine yourself singing five years from now. Can you see it? Good. Now imagine yourself singing 10 years from now. And 20 years. And maybe even 30 or 40 years from now. Don’t think about how old you’ll be. Think about singing. Can you see yourself with gray hair…singing like you did when you were young? Think it’s impossible? It’s not. And I’ll show you how and why.
I’ll list these three parts of your voice in reverse order of importance. I’m doing it this way to build you up. Ready? Good, let’s get started…
Number 3: Food
Yep, food is a vital part of your voice. What you’re feeding your body is also what you’re feeding your voice. And it’s extremely important to be aware of, if you want to sing as long as you can in your life. I know you’ve heard and seen how some rock stars seem to go on and on in their careers even though they guzzle alcohol, do drugs, and party all night. But for every one of those stories, you can find ten more who burn out (or worse) long before middle age. They didn’t take care of their health. They wasted their talents. Don’t be one of those.
Get plenty of fruits and veggies in your diet. Look for dark colors and go organic as much as you can. If you like meat, eat grass-fed beef. Find out your blood type and eat accordingly. Feed yourself well, and the reward will be a longer life and stronger voice.
Number 2: Water
Water could actually come in as a tie with number one (which we’re getting to). It’s that important. If you want to sing long and strong, you’re gonna have to drink lots of water. There’s no two ways about it. And I don’t mean what most people think is a lot of water. I mean a lot of water. With every breath you take your lungs exhale moisture. And that happens even more when you’re singing. Every note, every stanza, every song in the set means less moisture in your body. And less moisture means more risk of vocal stress or breakdown. But the good news is how easy it is to keep that from happening. Always have plenty of water around while you’re singing. Here’s a rule of thumb…
…for every 45 minute set you sing, have at least one 16 ounce glass of water. And do yourself a favor. Drink the best filtered water you can afford. Stay away from tap water. The chemicals found in tap water make it more difficult to quench thirst. How weird is that?! Look for a water filter that filters out chlorine, chloramines, heavy metals, and fluoride…while leaving in the minerals. And try to drink half your body weight in ounces of water per day. For example: if you weigh 100 pounds, drink 50 ounces of water a day.
Water is as important to your voice as oil is to the engine of your car. An engine breaks down without oil. Your voice breaks down without water. So drink up.
Number 1: Your Mind
Your voice begins in your brain. You need a clear head to think about what you’re singing, how to control the diaphragm, and how to stylize notes. You’ve got to clearly see yourself singing the song. If you can’t focus, your voice will suffer. That can lead to negative thoughts and those lead back to less quality singing. It’s a downward spiral, but it can be avoided with plenty of sleep, deep breathing, and following the advice found in Numbers 2 and 1.
If singing is important to you…and I bet it is…then practice your scales, sing with the radio as you’re driving down the road, and go shine some karaoke parties. But don’t forget or neglect the three parts of your singing voice that help you sing long and strong your whole life.
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