Sunday, August 03, 2008

What would you do if you knew you couldn't fail?

A key question I ask my clients at the start of our work together is "What would you do if you knew you couldn't fail?" I get varied responses - be my own boss, travel the world, run for office, make a difference. For each person, the dream is different but what's the same is underlying fear that it's not possible.

Hearing this from my clients, I thought one of the best ways I could help was to lead by example. It has always been my dream to sing on stage so recently I did one of the scariest things I've ever done - I put on a cabaret show off-Broadway in New York City!

I themed the show, "Believe in Your Dreams" and sang popular jazz standards each focused on following your passion. I had an emcee and a comedian in the show who followed their dreams and had inspiring stories to tell. I also donated proceeds from the show to an inspiring charity.

I can't tell you how great it felt to experience my dream coming true. Click here to see a clip from the show. The audience really enjoyed it too. Many left saying they were inspired to go after their dreams as a result. Even the owner of the cabaret venue told me I had what it takes to "make it big."

Now I don't just tell my clients they can do it, I show them and tell them how to make it happen:
--Do it for yourself first. I never told anyone I wanted to sing but deep down I knew it was within me. And when I found out that a friend was a singing coach, I approached her to to set up lessons. Kim Engler ( who also produced my show, helped me find my voice and have confidence in my ability to sing. She knew just what to say at just the right moment to help me reach each note. She also got me to take my dream seriously.
--Enjoy the process. I took a year and a half of singing lessons before deciding to perform on stage. I had to learn new ways to breathe and to position myself in order to fully utilize my entire body as an instrument. Taking my time allowed me to savor the experience and really see the progress I was making over time.
--Get support from people who believe in you. My clients, friends and family all attended my show - some travelling across the country and others travelling across the globe. Those who couldn't attend sent well wishes. It was wonderful to feel so much support. At the show, it was great to know the audience was rooting for my success.

Having had so much fun, I'm already planning my next show for the fall. I want to continue inspiring people to live their dreams by living my own. Eleanor Roosevelt put it well when she said, "The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams."

I'd love to hear about your dreams. What would you do if you knew you couldn't fail? Have you done something that scares you only to realize you loved every minute of it? Share your comments and let's help each other believe in our dreams!


Paige said... did it!!! You are such an inspiration to your readers, clients, and fans (me)! You inspired me to become a career coach over three years ago when I had the honor of listening to one of your presenations on the profession of coaching. I am pleased to say that this past Wednesday I was awarded my certification as a Career and Life Coach...and I am on my way!
Thank you. And thanks for posting your amazing performance. I can't wait for the next one!

Joyce Schwarz said...

Hi, great post I'd like to include part of it and a referral in my two blogs: and Congrats on LIVING YOUR DREAM! I will also contact you about a blurb for my upcoming book I've been referred by a mutual acquaintance.

Maggie Mistal said...

Congratulations Paige! Nice work getting your certification. Happy to help. Best of luck with your new career!

Maggie Mistal said...

Thanks Joyce - yes please contact me!

Zanade said...

I enjoyed this blog. In the past two years I decided to follow my dream and direct a non profit for underserved youths throughout NYC and pursue my writing career. It sounds bad for some but I have put my 9-5 on the back burner to do what I love. Life is too short to not do what makes you happy!

Maggie Mistal said...

Thanks for leading by example Zanade! I think most people would just love to have the courage to do what you've done. What's the name of the nonprofit?

Zanade said...

Thank you so much I truly appreciate the support. The name of the organization is The pink Polka Dot Org. We are based in New York City and we are giving the non profit world SOMETHING NEW!

Maggie Mistal said...

My pleasure. Sounds fun. Is there a website in case people want more information?

Zanade said...

yes but it is a work in progress

readers can get more info at our Myspace page.

Thank you again