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In early December, I took a huge leap with one of my dreams: I set a date for my first vocal performance ever where I’ll perform my own songs. I immediately felt a strange mix of fear and exhilaration. My dream finally had forward movement.

I figured being six months out, I would have plenty of time to figure out the details.

I floated along for a month basking in the progress I’d made. I’d set a clear, definitive intention (a big step), and I knew having it come together was possible. Yet inside, I felt isolated and doubtful.

For instance, I don’t even know any musicians. How will I ever form a band? When I told a few friends and family, 25 of them immediately began booking travel arrangements. I’m talking airplane tickets and hotel rooms! (Evidently, people had been waiting a long time for my first performance.)

Also, I don’t have a venue. I haven’t sung harmony pretty much ever so I don’t even know how to direct other vocalists in how to sing my songs with me.

My voice was out of shape. I have a few original songs but don’t know much about arranging and I haven’t sung with a mic in almost 20 years. And what about things like equipment? I’m clueless about that.

By early January, I realized I wasn’t going to be able to do this by myself. I took another huge leap and joined a bluegrass music ensemble at a school here. I did it before I could really afford it, because registration was closing and I wasn’t willing to wait two months until the next class opened. That would put me in early March and leave only three months to figure everything out.

I just wasn’t willing to float along anymore.

Looking back, I am so glad I didn’t wait.

The night of the first class, I felt afraid, nervous and inexperienced. I even felt kind of embarrassed. And within ten minutes that first night, we were playing as an ensemble. Wow, things were moving fast.

As the teacher said, “Might as well just jump right in!”

Our final class was last night, and this is how my life has changed:

1) I’ve sung with a band — a MUCH different experience than singing alone in my apartment, feeling isolated. I feel supported and collaborative.

2) I’ve learned how to sing high baritone harmony. Plus, my literal vocal power has increased.

3) I’ve already picked out two musicians for my performance, if they want to play in my band – the bass and the mandolin players. There are also at least two banjo players I have my eye on, and two guitar players. Wow, finding my band turned out to be easy.

4) My confidence has soared in my ability to have my dream come true. This is mostly because two other musicians specifically came up to me after our final class to tell me that the ensemble was so much better than usual having a real vocalist in it. Wow, I had affected their experience. This felt great because I am the only person to ever have taken the class who doesn’t play an instrument.

5) Because next session we will be performing in public, I will be able to get over my jitters and hangups BEFORE I perform this summer on my own, and do it with the support and camaraderie of people feeling exactly what I am feeling.

Why am I telling you all this? Because sometimes we all need to take a leap.

What move could you make that would allow you to get real forward movement in your business, your dream … whatever you’re wanting to happen in your life? Whatever leap will provide you with the support and guidance you need for your dreams and your business, my challenge to you is to recognize what the right step is, and then, take it!

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Beth A. Grant is a writer, speaker, marketing strategist and thought leader who helps you be yourself in business, in love, in life. She blogs at


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