Open Throat, Open Mind: Voice Coaching Creates Confidence from Inside Out
Voice coaching isn’t just for aspiring performers. It’s for anyone who wants to speak and think more openly, confidently and effectively, says Ronni Sarrett Lederman, a private voice coach in Bronxville.
“The voice, located in the throat chakra, is a portal through which we constantly give and receive our personal energy to the world,” Lederman says. “It’s the place where physically we have the opportunity to let go of judgment of ourselves and others. Based on my study of A Course in Miracles, I like to think of the throat as the seat of forgiveness. This is the path to our higher selves and our connection to source.”
Because most of us were socialized as young children to “control ourselves” and not communicate in an authentic way, we developed chronic muscle tightness in the throat, she says. Traumatic experiences exacerbate that effect by triggering the body’s defense mechanisms in the areas around the vocal cords, such as the throat constrictors and root of the tongue.
“Little by little throughout life, we close our communication down because it is filtered through this throat area,” she says. “The tension there is constant, and so we don’t notice it. But as a result, we leave unexpressed many things we might want to share.”
Learning how to release that tension can have “surprising and delightful” effects, Lederman says. To start, practice thinking of your tongue as a “soft, fat, floating, weightless entity” that’s so relaxed you can’t feel it. Breathe past it through your mouth and feel the cool air travel past the root of your tongue into your throat.
“If you can get to that level of tongue release while interacting with others, you may have some surprising results,” she says. “Students have told me that they feel less judgmental. You may suddenly listen more closely to others without feeling threatened. You may start to feel more comfortable speaking your own truth. You may start to expand your ability to forgive and accept, which furthers your own spiritual path.”
In essence, opening the throat can also open the mind.
To contact Ronni Sarrett Lederman and learn more about voice coaching, visit VocalFocus.com.