Confidence is such a key issue in your development as a singer. People can often be quite shy about their voices – not just in front of crowds, but also singing in front of a singing teacher, or even at home or alone where they may be overheard by a friend, family member or neighbor.
We kind of know these fears are unfounded, on some level. There is nothing to be shy or embarrassed about with singing. Done well it’s beautiful, impressive and a pleasure to listen to. Regardless, a singer’s ability and willingness to go for it and put themselves out there is always deserving of respect.
However – it can still be difficult to break out of that box and sing with confidence. So here are 8 quick tips to help you do so.
The best news of all is that – whether by coincidence or because confidence and ability go hand-in-hand – these tips will all crucially increase your actual singing ability as well as your singing confidence.
Good luck, and enjoy!
1 – A (Stretching) Warm Up
This one has multiple benefits. First and foremost, stretching is vital in a good singer’s warm up regardless. But secondly, those who do yoga know the mental and physical benefits of stretching-based exercise. Physical exercise releases endorphins in the brain, making us happier, calmer, and therefore more confident!
2 – Breathe!
Another with multiple benefits (you’ll see a pattern emerging in a minute!)
Yes, breathing is essential in good singing. Not only in a warm up, but also in terms of controlling your breathing while actually singing. Moreover though, breathing exercises, taking slow deep breaths, and controlling your breathing are really important relaxation techniques too.
3 – Relaxed Posture
As above – this is key to good singing, AND to feeling relaxed and confident. If you hold your body in a relaxed position, you’ll feel far more relaxed (and therefore confident) than if you’re tight, tense and twisted! Keep your shoulders and arms loose, stand up straight with your head up, and you’ll feel the difference. If you notice your body straying from this, calmly return it to a relaxed posture.
4 – Practice!
It has to feature on every list of tips doesn’t it! Anyone who has ever taken exams at varying states of preparation will fully understand this. Which exam do you feel more confident going into – the one for which you’ve revised and practiced and prepared fully? Or the one where you’ve skim-read a few things, and know there are gaps in your knowledge?
If you have a singing exam, performance, a concert, or anything like that coming up and you want to feel more confident – do your practice!
5 – Small Audiences
Performing should be in front of small audiences at first. A few friends/family is ideal. Or if that feels too much, start even smaller – singing alone at home but with the windows open, or uploading snippets somewhere (friendly!) online. Any early concerts should be small to allow you to build confidence and stagecraft in a low-stakes environment
6 – Take Lessons (In Some Form)
Lessons in some form can only help. It could be with a local singing teacher, online lessons, YouTube tutorials, whatever. The key thing is that you are actively developing and improving. You’re systematically working through difficulty and growing your level with expert advice.
7 – Record Yourself
Another multi-pronged approach here. Recording yourself allows you to hear your current strengths and weaknesses. Meaning you can a) Take confidence from your audible strengths, and b) Non-judgmentally resolve to improve your weaknesses.
Secondly, though, with good practice and tuition, you’ll improve rapidly and next time you record yourself and compare the difference, that’ll be a fantastic reward and a great confidence boost.
8 – Karaoke!?
Something like karaoke adds an element of fun. Singing is meant to be fun, after all. It’s good to take it seriously, if it’s what you love. But you mustn’t lose sight of its purpose and why you wanted to do it in the first place.
Karaoke is a great way to build confidence. Think about it – the stakes are low, everyone is there to have fun, it’s a supportive, light-hearted environment, usually with a small, semi-distracted environment, and a generally low level of ability.
It’s the perfect place to build confidence in singing, performing and going for it!