Giving Up "The Gift"

To maximize your talents and abilities, lessen their significance.

Posted Oct 25, 2017

Every morning, a quote of inspiration arrives in my inbox. Yesterday’s was: “Share The Gift.”

The encouragement to share yourself is lovely.  And I find it to be more powerful when said that way… share yourself, not your gifts.


In my practice, I work with many talented singers. And because they know they’re talented, they tend to have a lot of "stuff" around their voices. The idea of having been bestowed something special—a gift—can do that to you. The joy and simple pleasure that once came from singing are now weighted down with a desire to do it "right," to be "the best," and to self-validate.

Some steer clear of this unfortunate way of relating to their voices thanks to, among other things, humility, perspective, and a vision that transcends the self. Still, the temptation toward trouble remains, given the power of language and the importance our culture places upon success.

The desire to be "right" and "the best" is powerful in a world that values speed and winning over curiosity and integration. Ironically though, in my experience, the latter more often lead to mastery and accomplishment, in singing and beyond. 

Therefore, in my practice we forego discussions about talent and doing things "right." We focus instead on curiosity, discovery, and play. On process rather than labels; on the love of singing rather than the limitations our fear and pride try to place upon it. The results—vocally and personally— sing for themselves.  

When we let wonder and curiosity lead us on toward knowledge, in any field, we achieve a wisdom far greater than words and labels can contain. A humble, powerful, and patient wisdom which allows us to most effectively, and joyfully, share ourselves. 

Learn more about Jennifer, her practice, and her books at:  

About the Author

Jennifer Hamady specializes in emotional issues that interfere with optimal self-expression and is the author of The Art of Singing.

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