I'm a coward. Hold me accountable.
Sitting around the family room on some pretty comfy couches in Buffalo, NY, The Voice popped up on T.V. and I felt a familiar sense of wanting to flee. Annoyance, grievance and agitation surfaced.
I didn’t want to watch the show the same way I didn’t want to watch any show pertaining to singing or acting.
And yet, I love to sing to act. So what gives?
As I sat with a friend a few days ago, I bragged how I didn’t have an issue taking action and that it was hard for me to understand why people wait so long to pursue their dream.
[yeah, ok Lauryn]
Back in front of the T.V. in Buffalo, my mom turns to me and says, “That one reminds me of you.” She was pointing to Michelle Chamuel.
Later I find out Michelle’s a lesbian and I’m thrown back to early days in college sitting around post LGBTA hangouts and shooting the shit.
One fine day, a very large lesbian (kind of like this one here) turns to me and says, “There’s straight and then there’s gay and you my friend, whether you can tell or not, are on your way straight to Gayville.”
For the next three years I wondered if I was secretly a lesbian, as if my true colors would show unexpectedly, sort of like when saints’ gifts are revealed and kind of like how this drug addict in this 90’s film appeared with the Stigmata.
Was I going to bear those same marks, only instead of bloody whip wounds, I would develop a taste for vagina, lesbian bars and strap-ons?
I was scared. Then I got over it.
I wasn't a lesbian and this was just the first of many, "Am I's (a lesbian, a Muslim, etc.).
Sitting in the family room with my mother, looking at Michelle, I got it.
She didn’t fit the typical image of The Voice. She looks more like a businesswoman than a performer and yet, she’s a top favorite of the judges and of America.
She came out of left field and is rocking it.
Clear to me now was why I was watching The Voice post Zumba session in my family room.
I may not be a lesbian, but I was one hell of a pussy.
I’ve wanted to sing my entire life and am supposed to sing. In fact, I did sing for most of it. I was Templeton from Charlotte’s Web, Dodger from Oliver Twist and a slew of other roles.
But then I stopped and I’m not totally clear as to why.
Shortly after my premature retirement, I developed an acute fear around singing in public, so much so that I wouldn’t do it, ever.
There I sat watching The Voice on a thundery night in Buffalo, NY and realized, I wasn’t agitated, I was jealous.
Jealous that these women were living their dreams.
Angry thinking I couldn’t do the same.
You may have seen the survey I posted yesterday where I asked my readers to share where they’re stuck in their business.
48+ responses later, I realize that one of the main reasons for stagnancy is that folks lack accountability, someone to make sure you do what you set out to when the going gets tough (and we as humans always make it tougher than it needs to be).
Flash forward to sitting in my childhood room, the one where I regularly put on one-woman shows about God only knows what to now, where I’m writing this post, seeing the same setbacks in myself that so clearly exist in my readers.
We’re not so different, are we?
And I ask myself, what’s it going to take?
I wrote out a “If today were my last year on earth” journal entry last night as I pondered my pussiness. This is what came out of it.
If this year were my last I would...
Try out for The Voice and Shark Tank
Contact 20 billionaires and raise money for the preservation of Tigers and bees.
Write a truthful memoir/insight every week for the world to see.
Teach someone something every single day.
Only eat meat that was once a healthy, free, loved animal and only eat truly organic produce.
Love myself where I’m at. Chill with the personal development and just be.
Shamelessly promote my work because it’s genuine, authentic and meant to help people.
Love deeper and more freely than I thought possible
Play the piano!
Long massages whenever I want.
Build things that matter
Give public thanks and gratitude every day. I’m talking about writing the rawest and most compelling gratitude list you’ve ever seen.
Help and love without reserve or judgement.
Never partake in gossip.
Call people to say thank you.
Say yes a whole lot more.
Wear whatever the f* I want!
Cut to the chase a lot faster.
If this were my last year on earth, this is what I’d stop doing. I would refrain from:
Telling myself I’m not good enough in all the sneaky ways I do: “You need to work out Lauryn. You’re not a millionaire yet Lauryn...”
Fearing the outcome.
So now, I have two personal requests to make.
One, I need your help. I want and need to sing and don’t know where to start because I’m overwhelmed by fear. How can I be held accountable?
This is a big ask and I’m actually scared as to what you may (or may not) say. Post your ideas in the comments below and please, for the love of God, post something so I can leave this blog entry with a shred of my ego remaining!
Two, I want to hear from you. What is one thing you deeply desire to do and yet have not taken action on? This is some place you feel stuck and maybe even hopeless, agitated or angry about.
Once you’ve identified what that thing is for you, what do you feel you need to make it happen?
For example, I really want to sing and am really scared of doing it publically. I need someone to hold me personally accountable. That means, going to open mics with me, telling me I can do it and coming up with some sort of public humiliation if I don’t follow through (I need something extreme).
Write out your answer now and email me it at Lauryn.Ballesteros@gmail.com. I’ll read every single one.
You rock. You deserve the best.
Peace + love
p.s. What you say to me stays between us. This is between you and me! #promise