WHAT IF YOU FREED YOUR VOICE TO FULLY EXPRESS YOURSELF?
At this time of the Occupy Movements and general upheaval around the globe, it is clear that people long to use their voices to express themselves and claim their power.
In my own journey of self-actualization, I practice using my voice to express my truth, my passions and to release those parts of myself that no longer serve me. One of the most exciting ways I do this is through Sound Healing. Sound Healing is the art of using sound, both through drums, bells, tuning forks or other external sound-making objects as well as using your own voice to move stuck energy in the body. It is both powerful and gentle, and is an incredible modality to heal physical, emotional and energetic imbalances. Similar to the acupuncture needles used in Traditional Chinese Medicine, Sound Healing utilizes the vibration of sound to create and move energy throughout the physical and energetic bodies. It is regarded as a proven, scientific healing modality and is becoming more popular these days. It is a safe, liberating way to really seize the power of your voice.
So what is so special about exercising our voice? I didn’t quite realize this until I began to use mine. In the past, I've enjoyed singing and had taken some vocal lessons, however it wasn’t until I started using my voice as a healing instrument as well as a vehicle to voice my true needs, beliefs and feelings, that I began to grasp just what making sound can do.
Making sound is not about sounding good or hitting the right notes of a song. It is not about performing for others. Making sound is PRIMAL. It is a basic human faculty and an innate part of our species. Sound is something that comes out of us from the first breaths that we draw upon when entering this world. Think how fiercely a baby can wail - full of power and resolve. Think of what uproarious laughter, cheering or whispering sounds like. Making sound can be anything from breathing, humming, singing, grunting, screaming, speaking or any other noise we can omit. It creates vibration and resonance. It can be gentle or fierce. It can come from the depths of who we are.
Yet in our society we are embarrassed of making noise. We fear saying the wrong thing, being rude, speaking at the wrong time, sounding bad if we sing or being inappropriate if we release primal sounds from our bellies in order to heal. When I first engaged in sound healing I would practice making different sounds that would acknowledge certain parts of my body that I was healing, such as my liver, intestines, etc., and I would balance my chakras (energy centers in the body) by practicing sound scales. I remember writing an email to my neighbors to let them know what I was doing so they wouldn’t worry and think a cat was dying in my apartment or something! I was so embarrassed! When I started taking voice lessons and joined a band, I used to sing in my bathroom with the door closed so no one would hear me – I felt incredibly self-conscious using my FULL voice. Over time, I grew to understand how freeing and healing it is for me to open my voice and I now joyously LET IT OUT regardless of who might hear. Perhaps it will even inspire someone as they walk by! More so, I began to realize how important it was for me to reclaim my own personal power through voicing my needs, feelings and beliefs to others - both verbally and in writing. It is incredibly empowering to speak your truth. What do you REALLY want to say to people?
There are many useful ways to use sound and when relevant, I utilize some of these techniques with my health and life-coaching clients as well as in the group workshops that I lead. Contact me to find out more.
Here are a few exercises to help get you started using sound for your own benefit:
* DEEP LISTENING & EXPRESSION *
Take a quiet moment and tune into yourself. Turn off your phone and computer and just listen. What do you hear?
Start by listening to what you hear outside. Take mental note of all the different sounds. What do you hear in front of you? Behind you? To your right and left? What does your breath sound like?
Now shift your focus inward. Start by focusing on your breath and tune out the thoughts that cross your mind. If you have a thought, just let it pass. Very slowly, scan your body starting at your head and working your way down to your throat, chest, abdomen, hips, thighs, calves, ankles and toes.
What do you hear?
How are you feeling physically and emotionally?
What parts of you are tired? In pain? Scared? Happy?
What sounds could you make to represent how you feel?
What do you need/long to express?
Take a moment and sit with all of it. Listen to your intuition. You can journal about your experience if you like. Now make some noise! Scream into a pillow or release a glorious sound of pride. Hum a gentle note. Recite a mantra or affirmation out loud to yourself. Tell someone how you really feel. It’s safe.
* CHAKRA BALANCING SCALES *
Each of the seven chakras (energy centers) of the body has a corresponding sound. The lowest, root chakra found at your sit bones, can be represented and balanced by making a lowwww, vibrating sound. Take a moment and try making the lowest humming sound you can make. (Ummmmmmm) Now shift the focus to your seventh chakra, or crown chakra on the top of your head, by making a very high pitched, squeaky sound. What is the highest sound that you can make? (Eeeeeeee)
The chakras can all be balanced by practicing scales. Start with the lowest note, focusing on your sit bones/hips and slowly move your focus up, through your sexual organs, abdomen, heart, throat, etc. aiming for the top of your head. Simultaneously, as you move up your body, slowly make your tone higher and higher until you reach your highest note at the top of your head. Then reverse it. See where you get stuck or are not fluid. That will inform you where you might be holding onto some stuck energy in your body. You can use sound to move through that and keep practicing the scales until they are fluid. This can be incredibly grounding, rejuvenating and healing!
* GROUNDING YOUR ENERGY *
If you have a lot on your mind, especially before you go to sleep, practice making the lowest sound you can make and shift your focus down towards your feet. This will shift your vibration and help get you out of your head.
So…. What do you need to express? What does it sound like? What would happen if it were totally safe for you to use your voice fully? What would you tell people if you had the courage to speak honestly and lovingly?
Tune in. Listen. And let it out - Wildly. Lovingly. Freely. Authentically.
May you sing your song proudly and march to the beat of your own drum!