Day 5 - Just start. "The moment you take that first step, little seeds of courage begin to sprout in your heart". Just start. Two words. Just two little words bring all the anxiety I work to manage on a daily basis to the forefront of my being. Just start. How? Where? What? Me??? Just start. You can do this, Maria. You are stronger than you think. You are braver than you think. Take a deep breath, and start.
When I told my husband I wanted to pursue a career in music, he began throwing ideas of where I should perform, and songs I should sing. As excited as I was that he was so wonderfully supportive, I was also scared out of my gourd at the ideas he had for me. He actually told me to perform at Potbellies. Side note for those of you who do not know about Potbellies, they make amazing sandwiches and salads. The toasted ones with fresh ingredients, served in an old-fashioned vintage-style fast food place, featuring a potbelly stove somewhere in the dining area. The sandwiches are awesome, but the best part about going to Potbellies is the music. Local musicians played their guitars like they were born with one and sang covers as if they were originals. I love listening to the music while enjoying my roast beef sandwich. This place is cool...me...not so much. Thanks for the idea though, Chris. It's sweet you think I'm cool like that.
After a year of practice, researching interesting versions of cover songs, performing and hosting Open Mic Nights, meeting fellow musicians with this shared hidden (sometimes not so hidden) anxiety and stage nerves, and even writing a few songs of my own, I overcame the feeling that I would never be one of those cool musicians who perform at Potbellies. It took alot of talking myself into it. It took listening to the compliments, and taking in the feedback, to improve my music skills. It took me digging through my memories from my music theory classes to analyze chord structures, phrasing, and dictation to learn enough music to perform for 90+ minutes. It took the seeds of courage to grow strong enough inside my heart to walk me through the doors of the Potbellies with my baritone ukulele in hand and request an audition. I was given three songs to start, and told if you're doing well, we'll let your keep going until your run out of music. Most musician shifts are 1.5-2 hours. Good luck.
Just start. Walk over to the "stage" area, set up, breath, and start. You can do this. You are braver than you think. You can do this. You have a binder full of music. You practice all the time. You've got this. Take a breath. Just start. Three songs turned into 90 minutes before I ran out of music. I did it...and I got tips (which are being donated to Caring Hearts and Voices)! I did it. I took a step of courage yesterday.
By the way, If you see me performing at the Potbellies in Elk Grove Village please know, all of my tips are being donated to Caring Hearts and Voices!
*Google search images of Potbellies.
I am Maria Jordan, founder of Caring Hearts and Voices. I started this organization to honor my mom, my sons, and my own story. We all have gone through difficult times. Times where we needed support from family, friends, and the people around us. For me, music was often a greater source of comfort during those times. Caring Hearts and Voices is dedicated to providing support to people in need through music. How can our Caring Hearts and Voices be there for you?