A key question I ask my clients at the start of our work together is "What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?" I get varied responses – be my own boss, travel the world, run for office, make a difference. For each person, the dream is different but what’s the same is underlying fear that it’s not possible.
Hearing this from my clients, I thought one of the best ways I could help was to lead by example. It has always been my dream to sing on stage so recently I did one of the scariest things I’ve ever done – I put on a cabaret show off-Broadway in New York City!
I themed the show, "Believe in Your Dreams" and sang popular jazz standards each focused on following your passion. I had an emcee and a comedian in the show who followed their dreams and had inspiring stories to tell. I also donated proceeds from the show to an inspiring charity.
I can’t tell you how great it felt to experience my dream coming true. Click here to see a clip from the show. The audience really enjoyed it too. Many left saying they were inspired to go after their dreams as a result. Even the owner of the cabaret venue told me I had what it takes to "make it big."
Now I don’t just tell my clients they can do it, I show them and tell them how to make it happen:
—Do it for yourself first. I never told anyone I wanted to sing but deep down I knew it was within me. And when I found out that a friend was a singing coach, I approached her to to set up lessons. Kim Engler (firstname.lastname@example.org) who also produced my show, helped me find my voice and have confidence in my ability to sing. She knew just what to say at just the right moment to help me reach each note. She also got me to take my dream seriously.
—Enjoy the process. I took a year and a half of singing lessons before deciding to perform on stage. I had to learn new ways to breathe and to position myself in order to fully utilize my entire body as an instrument. Taking my time allowed me to savor the experience and really see the progress I was making over time.
—Get support from people who believe in you. My clients, friends and family all attended my show – some travelling across the country and others travelling across the globe. Those who couldn’t attend sent well wishes. It was wonderful to feel so much support. At the show, it was great to know the audience was rooting for my success.
Having had so much fun, I’m already planning my next show for the fall. I want to continue inspiring people to live their dreams by living my own. Eleanor Roosevelt put it well when she said, "The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams."
I’d love to hear about your dreams. What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail? Have you done something that scares you only to realize you loved every minute of it? Share your comments and let’s help each other believe in our dreams!