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What Open Stage is Teaching me About Life : Page 2 of 2

What Open Stage is Teaching me About Life

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4. Send love to what (or who) I'm afraid of

"Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love" — Ranier Maria Rilke.

In her Performance Wellness training for musicians, Dr. Louise Montello of Musicians Wellness, Inc. speaks about a "loop" of energy that flows between the performer and the audience. She also reminded me that most of the people sitting in the audience are there because they love music (just like me) and are looking to have a positive experience (just like me).

If I think about how I can help those people, what I can give to them through my music, how to help them have that positive experience, then all of a sudden I'm no longer thinking about myself (like what I might do wrong or what they might be thinking about me).

I've personally experienced this positive flow of energy. When I look into an audience expecting to find love and acceptance, and focus on GIVING those things myself, I'm rewarded with all of that positive energy coming back to me.

I find that sending love towards what I fear – and sending love to MYSELF when I'm afraid, helps me to loosen the hold that the fear has on me.

5. Experience (and only experience) makes an expert

When I went to that first Open Stage afternoon, I didn't know how it would turn out. I didn't know what would happen or whether I would be any good. I so much wanted to skip the step of experiencing it for the first (and second, and third, and fourth) time, and just get to where I already felt comfortable and could predict the outcome (uh-oh, there's a few lessons from above that I hadn't quite learned yet!).

The truth is that I have to be patient and let things unfold in God's perfect time. Though I've "paid my dues" in other musical and life situations, I have to humbly accept that I'm very much a beginner at this Open Stage situation.

When I want to stay safe by doing things the way I've always done them, or choosing the strategy that has a "guaranteed" outcome, I'm limiting my possibilities for all kinds of wonderful (and unexpected) experiences.

I can't wait to see what's next for me on the Open Stage. Stay tuned for my next lessons……•

This article was originally published on the Muses Muse Songwriter's Resource website (April 2005) www.musesmuse.com.

© Linda Dessau, 2005. All rights reserved.

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7/17/05