As part of my job, I help with company events and a Blues Band event in the company parking lot this fall was on the calendar. A couple of my coworkers are incredibly talented musicians and wanted to entertain clients and friends for an afternoon. They knew I had a musical background and asked me if I wanted to sing a few numbers. It sounded like so much fun of course I agreed.
Then I had second and third thoughts.
Even though I didn’t lose any excitement or enthusiasm toward singing in the parking lot on a Saturday afternoon, I found I was trying to talk myself out of it. “I’ve never sung “the blues”, I’ve really not sung with a band, I live far enough away practicing with the group would be a challenge”….blah blah blah. Even though I knew this would be something I would enjoy and the people that I would be working with are some of the nicest, most laid back individuals on the planet, I was putting up barriers. Why? My brain knew I was being ridiculous, but my emotions wanted to take over.
Definition: barrier (noun) bæi: ər 1. Structure blocking access; a structure such as a fence that is intended to prevent access or keep one place separate from another. 2. Something that obstructs; something that obstructs or separates, often by emphasizing difference. 3. Limit or standard; something considered to be a limit, standard, or boundary. 4. Ice shelf; in geography, the part of the Antarctic ice shelf that extends over the sea and partly rest on the ocean floor.
I ‘m going to give myself some credit for at least being aware of the fact that the barrier went up in the first place. I noticed my excuses and I could look at them like a 3rd party and see them for the obstruction that they were. A few years ago I lacked that perspective. This is one giant step toward mindfulness for me!
So now, there I was, examining my angst. What does one do with a worry that you rationally know is unfounded? Well, first I looked at my excuses:
”I’ve never sung the blues.”
And then I let Love answer them:
“There’s a first time for everything, and you’re singing with great people. If ever there would be a time to try it out, this is it!”
“I’ve never sung with a band.” vs. “What the heck, when does the opportunity to sing with a band fall in your lap? Good or bad, it will be an amazing experience!”
“I live too far away, how will I practice?” vs. “You might live far away but you work down the street. Practice after work.”
Those weren’t the only barriers I was trying to erect. I found myself noticing excuse after excuse until I worked through every worry-filled blockade by responding to it with Love (capital L). It worked. Last Saturday, I just enjoyed the experience. Every positive thing I thought it could be came true and none of the obstacles appeared. This was an incredible lesson for me.
“Let go and let God” is one of those phrases that I had always found annoying. The idea of “giving up” doesn’t translate into my reality. However, I think these last few months taught me that “letting go” has everything to do with removing a barrier that separates us from Real Love (i.e. God). I was more than happy to give it up and enjoy the day.