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#Walls. They were built solidly around me. They encompassed me so completely that ever leaving the comfortable confines of their protection seemed unlikely.

With this inaugural entry of my #blog, I want to focus on how and why I chose to create an album in the first place. It all began with a suggestion from a friend. Then my anxiety formed itself into words in the first song I ever wrote called, Walls, which will appear on my new album, #OfLight ~ Escape to Another World.

After the suggestion from my friend, I mulled the idea of an album over for a few days, finally settling into it. My confidence on the outside did NOT reflect what I was feeling on the inside. But ... THIS opportunity could be the one that fulfilled all my deeply held dreams.

My mentor had the knowledge of how to proceed, I had a #supportteam of #friends and #fans, my #family was all in, and then there was me... pretending I was absolutely confident in my ability to do this, but in truth was not. You know the adage, #fakeittillyoumakeit. I was clinging to it like a child with a life preserver at the far end of the pool. And I was smiling about it too. Truth was, I was SCARED!

Over the years, I had built ideas, thoughts and beliefs that did NOT support my current direction. I examined my long-held beliefs and wondering when I had become #timid and #weak. My attitudes were self-imposed, fabricated #lies from within my own mind that kept me in a proverbial, "comfort zone."

This discovery was good and timely because I had already told a #grundle (Fictitious word meaning, lots and lots) of people who were now on board with MY idea of an album, which was great ... but in my heart, I wanted to back out immediately!

Breaking down your own walls

As I looked back over my life, the #challenges, the #changes, the #failures and #successes, things that happened long before I ever considered an album, I saw that my own #thoughts had captured me, like a #prisoneroffate. The confident go-getter had slid into a space of reservation and quiet that did not didn't lend well to a #career in #music. Consequently, I had to rediscover how to conquer those ugly voices of defeat in my brain, and recognize that I am in charge of my thoughts ... no one puts them in there—but me.

Ah hah! My first clue to success! I PUT THEM IN THERE. Now to figure out how to get them out.

It was pretty rudimentary really. I began systematically taking down the walls that held me there... one stone at a time, with dumb exercises that forced action. I literally had to teach myself how to look at people, #smile, say hello and start a conversation. Anyone who knows me now, knows that this is no longer an issue. I can start a conversation just about anywhere and with anyone.

One day I began my new found plan by just looking up and giving a dry smiling to someone. No teeth, just an uncomfortable, sort of fake smile. Pushing through, it took me about two weeks until magically (#magic is real), it was no longer uncomfortable. What?! It was no longer uncomfortable? I celebrated with a loud shriek in the car. I had done it! Accomplishment. I began to feel like the old me. The one who had somehow gotten lost.

The next step was actually smiling (with my teeth) and speaking. It was equally terrifying. But once again, making myself do this small exercise over and over, it eventually became easy, even #fun! I learned how to say, "Hello. How are you today." I had actually #foundmyvoice. Everything snowballed from there, until... I hit the wall with the album idea. Recognition seeped into every crevice of my body; I was NOT finished finding myself I guess. I needed more #growth and confidence.

Ugh. Here we go again ...

#Embracingfear was my only hope

Maybe it was #pride, or the fear of losing "face" with my friends, but the knowledge of everyone knowing about the album sort of forced my hand in moving forward and in the #growth of my own spirit. I was stuck.

As my #mentor lined out the details for album #creation, I shuddered. He was asking me to step so far out of my #comfortzone that I thought I might just pass out. But like everything else, and through the soothing words of those closest to me, I took the first step, which led to the second, and so on. I think I am now on step number two-thousand and forty-seven. Only another one-thousand to go!

Through this process of #embracingthefear, I have finally gotten strangely comfortable with discomfort. It does not matter what I am feeling, terror, apathy, joy or confidence, the goal is the same; move forward no matter what because that is how goals are achieved. I feel so fortunate to have embraced this space—like discovering a #diamondmine fortunate! The walls DO and WILL rebuild themselves pretty much every day, but it is in those moments where decision either makes you or breaks you. I choose to disassemble the barriers in front of me every single day. I have learned that if I do not, no one else will. So ... I have grown to enjoy the #uncomfortableness of discomfort, and I am still moving forward. #Youcantoo #nevergiveuponyourselft #fightforyourself #becomeyourbestself #dreamsareworthit #liveyourdreams #singergirl #makingmusic #lotr #Skyrim #pickthebestmusic #meaningfulmusic #powerfulmusic #loveyourself #yougothis

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