I read a fascinating discussion on the Internet a while ago. It was in respect to mental versus physical. My name was also thrown into that discussion by someone who suggested I was very much into the mental aspects.

And it's true. I am. Very much so.


…we could also argue that I am very much into advanced muscle development.

One of the cornerstones of my method, as well as the Sing With Freedom program, is to develop advanced kinesthetic awareness. That is how we can effectively develop all physical aspects of the voice. That is why it has been proven so effective for pros as well as beginners. And that in turn enables us to practice and learn effectively so we can ultimately express with greater passion and freedom.

In the free video that I provide I mentioned my passion for developing strategies to make my fingers move effectively when I played the violin as a kid.

Now here’s the thing; being able to isolate muscles, release tension, effectively develop strength, coordination and functionality of our body is very much a mental activity.

Being aware, being able to focus and being able to shift your focus by choice is very much a mental activity

Becoming aware of mental resistance, such as fear – whether it is fear of making a fool out of yourself or the fear of singing a high note alone in a room – is very much a mental exercise.

Every athlete who excels at a psychical move has become good at it because of the mental capacity to be aware and recognize the movement and balance in the body.

Everyone who has ever become successful at something has done it because of the mental activity involved in being able to focus on a tasks, choosing the activities to engage in, facing challenges, facing their fears, motivating themselves, developing passion and discipline, and we can go on and on.

What is your right foot doing right now? What about your jaw right now? What is your right hand doing?

Ah, isn’t it fascinating that you can do that?

Hey what are you thinking right now?

Now, “mental” doesn’t necessarily mean “thinking” (quite the contrary actually).

As an athlete I was very much involved in advanced mental training and still am to this day. In all honesty, that is not what the Sing With Freedom program is about. (Maybe I’ll create a real mental training program on learning advanced skills in your mind one of these days?)

The good news is that increasing the awareness of body and mind is a developed skill.

And skill development, as you probably know already, is my passion. Physical or mental - call it what you want, I think we are amazing.

Aren’t we amazing?!

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  • I so very much agree! and I thank you warmly for what you just expressed. Like what I felt early the other morning, going out and seeing the flood of stars in the sky, and then yesterday, looking into the face of an elderly neighbor I visited, as I sang and (mostly) played the guitar, hymns and a few cowboy songs. (Right now, I don’t sing as well as I play…) I had to agree with the one who said looking into faces can give us glimpses of heaven.

  • Voice is indeed so amazing a creation.
    Isnt it amazing just how many variations you can have with just your voice, the dynamics that can be achieved with combinations of resonance, range, texture, volume, modulation, style.
    Think of a mimicry artist- the different perceptions he creates with just his voice..
    Thank you Per for the ‘Sing with Freedom’ program!
    Discovering finer aspects to my voice that I once thought is not doable due to whatever reasons is such a wonderful experience that I cannot express enough in words.
    I am much grateful to you for opening up the barriers I had once created for myself.
    I can only imagine how deeply satisfying it must be for you to be in the profession you are!
    Thank You again for the wonderful person that you are and what you do. It is a Blessing to have you as my coach.

  • We ARE amazing! I personally thank God for this and for my opportunites, but no one has to if they don’t believe. Everyone can benefit from His creation, regardless.

    Unfortunately, many of us spend time telling ourselves ‘we can’t’. So, we won’t or we don’t. So much of what we do are choices to act: choices to grow or decline, choices to love or to hate. Of course, we can’t control everything, but we have the power to choose to act for the good of our own growth and life in all situations.

    So much of what I needed to know to live in life, I learned in kindergarten. And the little train that said, ‘I think I can…”

  • This evening, while you folks were leaving comments, we had the incredible privilege of hearing the Choral Art Society sing the Latin accompaniment “Voices of Light” to the 1924 silent film “The Passion of Joan of Arc.” The audience was riveted breathless through the whole hour-long black-and-white event, so focussed on the mental aspect of the singing by live voices and orchestra sans electronics and loudspeakers. Everyone was in tears. Mental vs. physical. Wins every time!

    Jincy, you’re absolutely right. The voice is amazing! God gave us a true gift by allowing us to evolve our voice into the heart rending form that it is today. Beautiful!

  • We are very much amazing ‘creations’. It’s all a question of commitment; and somewhere in there is the question of ‘time’ and whether the likely outcome is worth it!

  • I just had this conversation with my son this morning on this same subject regarding getting a great job. I told him he could get the job of his dreams if only he believed that he could do it, and never give up. Thank You Per for helping others to believe.

  • i will be 80 on may 2 2013, i still sing on my kareoke machine i don’t have the range i used to have so now i sing western music instead of ballads like i used to. i’m pretty good, but; i would like to get back to the songs that i love. thanks for listening. jim

  • There is nothing I would love more than a program on ‘Advanced Mental Training’
    I personally have always believed it is mind over matter,and what we are thinking and visualising play a hugh part in our success or failure!

  • I know that you are so right in that. I am lefally deaf; cochlear implant recipient. I have been singing along with some religious music that I love. I am getting to understand what I hear better the more I listen to them. There are some that I still have problems recognizing because the voice blends so completely with the instruments that I cannot hear them or because of other factors – one being that cd’s are digitally done and voice is analog by nature. there is some blurring of the sound in digital that I have to learn to discern.
    From the time I lost the major portion of my hearing (first total being unable to hear spoken sounds I became more aware of sensing of other things – feeling the vibrations of sounds. I could feel the ground vibrate when machines were on the road. The heavier the machine the more I was able to feel them. I live in a city now and I can still feel the heavier machines. Just not as distinctly. The trouble with most people is that they are not aware of a lot of things. Or if they are they do not pay attention to what they sense or feel. By paying attention you to details you discover a lot. I learned early on to pay attention to much – with possible blindness and deafness alertness was not an option. I learned a great deal from that.
    I wish I could afford to get your course. I am too far in debt, in a payee program with no credit cards, checks or debit cards allowed til I am clear of debt. I enjoy your lessons that you occasionally give. Thank you.

  • “increasing the awareness of body and mind is a developed skill.”
    Per, your comment above is interesting because I have proved the truth of this time and again.
    While battling with cancer in 1997 I was living in Zimbabwe and they didn’t have the range of medical treatments for pain that other countries enjoy.
    So pain control became a part of my life.
    An increased awareness of my body and how it functions helped me to overcome and control the pain without any medication.
    Using relaxer techniques together with certain body movements set up what is called the “gate control” method. It blocks the pain messages by setting up other nerve signals that counteract the pain signals.
    So, I am familiar with the increased body awareness.
    Some would say it’s mind over matter and I would agree with that – up to a point.
    However this goes beyond just ‘mind over matter’, and being aware of our body and how it functions is one way to increase energy levels, control body functions and make your body work the way tou want it to.
    That would also include singing.
    It’s really good to know that you understand all of this and help otheres to become aware, too.

  • There are two kinds of people in this world, those who can sing, and those who can’t. And those who can, may not be in the right place at the right time, or luckky enough to hook up with people in the music business. And in that case, best not give up their day job(if they’ve got one)

  • I too totally believe in the mental aspect…only recently I have started singing at my church and it was my goal to do so for at least 8-9 yrs. I have always said …I have no voice and I can’t sing…since reading clips from this site I have focused on pieces that I really feel and connect with and it has helped me so much. I don’t choke with fear, instead I focus on feeling the song and putting my heart into it! I am 62 and I have to do this now, enough of saying I can’t. I lamented to a wise priest friend of mine that I should have started music earlier in my life…he said “what’s important is that you did start”

  • So good to hear everyone’s thoughts. I have been concerned with teaching mind body unity for the past 25 years through the Alexander Technique. It is about developing conscious awareness of what we think and how we carry out our daily activities so that we can make adjustments. Habit is the problem, awareness is part of the solution, stopping before the habit takes place is crucial to any change. Directing something new is the difficult bit as you really have to think about not doing the old thing and keep always in mind the new thing that you want. This can be applied to any skill such as singing. It is indeed a very exciting venture and good to be reading some of your work…a very close link to AT I’d say.

  • I read an article about Veitnam POW”S how they played mental games in their cell to pass the time., namely golf. I’ve forgotten the other details but when they got home and played, their game had improved immensely. The power of the mind, and I actually have found myself doing metal excerises, especially for the lower notes. I find it helps to prepare for the live performance, for no surprises.
    Have a wonderful singful 2013
    Norma Isobella

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