Recently, a singer emailed over some songs for me to hear prior to our first meeting. They were good... other than some standard, easily released tensions, there was nothing in his voice that was concerning or problematic.
What I did hear though, was safety. I heard a tremendous amount of potential not being expressed, many risks not being taken. I heard a choice to play it safe as a vocalist, as an artist and perhaps even as a person. (In my experience, rarely are these three unrelated...)
What's stopping him? What's stopping you?
We're not talking about someone in need of intense vocal or personal work. What we're talking about -- what he's in need of, what we're all in need of -- is bravery.
We're all good at doing what we do, staying inside of the lines. That's why we do it; that's why we stay there.
But that's not where the real fun is, no matter your passion, no matter your dreams or goals.
Fear calls us to newer and better experiences. And while fear can certainly be scary, it's far less so than the gnawing and consuming anxiety that comes from not striving for and living up to our full potential.
Just as songs are to be shared, not merely sung, life is to be lived, not merely survived. So live while you're alive; let 2012 be a year filled with bravery, rather than safety.