For some unknown reason I always want to break into song when I hear these words as the Monty Python song ‘Always Look on the Bright Side of Life’ comes flooding back to me.
I was recently driving long distance to work with a choir in the south of England when something happened along the way which was rather annoying at the time. When I look back on the incident, I should have just dismissed it instantly, refocused and carried on with my journey regardless, but something really riled me this time.
Having had time to ponder afterwards, I’ll now explain why you should always look on the bright side of life and never fear the worst.
So what happened?
Well it was nothing more than joining a congested motorway (freeway) on a Friday evening where the traffic had started to reduce speed due to mandatory speed limits; speed limits which are controlled manually from a remote computer and are displayed on the gantry over the new so-called ‘smart’ motorways.
I was coming out of a 70mph zone and into a mandatory 60mph zone and a speed camera was positioned right at the instant the 60mph zone started. Yes, you’ve guessed it ‘double flash’ – the light of the flash is brighter than anything around you and almost lights up the whole inside of your car when you’re travelling in the dark.
Gutted…..I’d been got!! I was convinced my life was over, the ****** had got me.
So you can guess what was on my mind for the whole rest of the journey; I wasn’t thinking about the job I had to do when I got to my destination, but the fact that I had an impending speeding fine and penalty points due to arrive – I really should have stayed at home that day.
So I carried on with this nagging thought in my head all the way down, literally driving on every speed limit and not 1mph more in fear of getting another ‘flash’.
It certainly focused my mind and stopped me from driving at my usual ‘slightly’ excessive speed, so that was good but it really did eat away at me at how careless I had been not to avoid being zapped.
So for the rest of the weekend and while working, I tried to put it to the back of my mind and get on with the job in hand which incidentally turned out to be a great weekend working with the Kings of Herts men’s barbershop chorus in Harpenden and was a lot of fun and we made a lot of great progress with their singing.
I returned home later the next day and you guessed it, not 1 camera was in operation on the return journey and this somehow seemed to compound my misery. Hey ho, such is life, just sit back and wait for the inevitable to arrive.
2 days, 4 days, 7 days – nothing. Now in the UK if they don’t write to inform you that you have been caught speeding within 14 days then you are off the hook. As I write it is now 23 days since the ‘flash’ and I am happy to say I have not received a thing through the post.
So what is the moral of this story?
Well, clearly that we should always look on the bright side of things, because what we often think may happen, never materialises.
Now what has all this got to do with improving your singing voice I hear you ask. Well, the same goes for all our negative ‘inner’ thoughts we can often hear before we perform. These negative thought processes that create anxiety and nervous tension are all thought patterns of bad things which may or may not happen. Don’t allow them to enter your head for even a second, just eradicate them instantly and think about the good things that are happening.
By staying in the ’present’ and only thinking of what is happening to us right now, we can reduce anxiety and concentrate on enjoying current experiences far more. Anxiety and nervous tension are wasted energy on something which will probably never happen.
Don’t worry about things that may never happen; just enjoy the moment.