Tag Archives: music

Why I Got Upset In Guitar Class

I'm a full time music student at the moment, and I'm loving learning how to write songs, perform in front of people and express myself through music. Music is great because it deals with both the analytical and emotional side of our brain.

Becoming a rock star isn't all riffs and distortion. There's conflict with other musicians to navigate too.

However, the irrational nature of emotions means that they don't always arise just when we want them to. Most of us are still carrying unhealed emotional baggage from our past which can get triggered in what might otherwise seem fairly innocuous situations. This can make dealing with unexpected upsets challenging both in ourselves and in other people.

In yesterday's guitar class, I got triggered by my teacher's response to what I though was a fairly intelligent question about whether the best way to improvise over a chord sequence in a major key would be by using the associated relative minor scale. My engineering brain thought that this would lead to less potential dissonance; but for any other budding musicians out there the answer turns out to be No: you use the minor pentatonic scale of the same key.… Continue reading…

Posted in Emotions | Tagged , , , , , | Comments Off on Why I Got Upset In Guitar Class

My Plan For Next Year: Become A Rock Star

One of the activities that I recommend in The Confident Man Program Guide is to learn to play a musical instrument. There are a whole host of benefits to doing this beyond simply being able to play music: You also learn a whole bunch of life success skills in the process such as:

  • Committing to a challenging task
  • Taking daily action towards your goal in the form of practice
  • Dealing with plateaus and setbacks
  • Overcoming your own resistance to success
  • Developing both sides of your brain: analytical and emotional
  • Expressing yourself on a deeper level
  • Having more fun!

Once you've got some basic skills under your belt you can also jam with other musicians and join a band where you'll also learn:… Continue reading…

Posted in Life Skills | Tagged , , | Comments Off on My Plan For Next Year: Become A Rock Star

Are You An Angry Young Man?

Anger is one of the emotions that I have found most difficult to deal with in the past. I grew up in a house where anger was handled in ways that I found very frightening, leading me to become very afraid of conflict. This meant that I made a decision fairly early on in life that anger was a "bad" emotion that I should suppress at all costs. I became very ashamed of anybody knowing when I was angry.

I ended up internalising a lot of rage and unhappiness. I just didn't know how to let anger go and how to get it out of my system. It wasn't until the last few years that I even realised just how angry I was deep down.

I now know that anger is not "bad" emotion; it's just a signal that our needs aren't getting met. Anger provides energy for us to act assertively in situations where people are treating us in ways we don't like. If we've learned to be passive in the face of our anger, that energy gets trapped in our nervous system.

Because I have many years of internalising my anger, the situations where I would have liked to act assertively have long passed.… Continue reading…

Posted in Emotions | Tagged , , | Comments Off on Are You An Angry Young Man?

Get On Stage At An Open Mic Night

Hey, it's Graham here with another confidence expanding tip for you. And today I want to talk about the suggestion of getting up on stage at an open mic night, performing your musical talents if you have any or your comedic talents if you have any or whatever talent it is that you have, doing it up on stage and getting outside your comfort zone which is of course the way that you build confidence the fastest.

Any big city will have comedy clubs and entertainment venues that have regular open mic nights, typically on Tuesdays or Wednesdays because those are the nights where it gets a little bit quiet and a lot of the professional acts prefer to perform on Thursday, Friday, Saturday nights. So Tuesdays and Wednesdays are often open mic nights where anybody who has a bit of talent that they want to develop can go along and tread the boards, get up on stage and have a go at entertaining people.

I recommend that you give it a go. Like, this will make your heart race like nothing else. If you're a bit of a funny guy and you've got some good wise-cracks, a few jokes that you want to run, I recommend that what you do is you work out some stories from your real life that have made you laugh that you think have been funny and that you put them together into a little five-minute comedy routine.… Continue reading…

Posted in Self Esteem | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Music For When You Feel Depressed

When you're feeling low, listening to music that describes exactly how you feel can help you get more deeply in touch with, and hence process, your raw emotions. So long as you avoid creating a story about why you feel bad that just reinforces the feeling, listening to music you can relate to can help you to move on from unpleasant feelings.

Here's a list of my favorite music for when I'm feeling sad, depressed or discouraged:

Soul Asylum: Misery

Misery loves company. Great for relating to frustration.

Linkin Park: Somewhere I Belong

If you're feeling lost and just don't seem to fit in, you'll relate to this one.

Evanescence: Going Under

For when you're feeling overwhelmed, like you're drowning.

Lily Allen: The Fear

Feeling anxious? You might as well acknowledge it... other people will be able to relate too.

Eminem: Lose Yourself

We all struggle with self-doubt from time to time. Just remember: success is my only motherfucking option, failure's not.

Gwen Steffani: What You Waiting For?

You've felt bad for long enough now; take some action to change it. What are you waiting for?

Add Yours

How about you? Do you have a favorite song for for when you're feeling low?… Continue reading…

Posted in Emotions | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Music To Make You Happy When You Feel Sad

When you're feeling sad, listening to positive, encouraging music can help you break out of it.

Here's my favorite music for turning sadness into happiness and optimism:

Chumbawumba: Tubthumping

I get knocked down. But I get up again. No, you're never gonna keep me down. Words to live by.

Paul Colman Trio: Turn

Gotta turn this life around, turn this life around. Catchy jingle about beating hard times, if you can ignore the kitsch religious undertones.

Steve Winwood: While You See A Chance

While you see a chance, take it! Great advice Steve.

En Vogue: Free Your Mind

Confidence is a lot about how you think. Free your mind!

David Guetta featuring Kelly Roland: When Love Takes Over

Want to feel more love in your life? Get it here.

Dutch featuring Crystal Waters: My Time

This is my time, this is my time.

Jimmy Cliff: I Can See Clearly Now

A classic song for emerging from difficult times.

KT Tunstall: Suddenly I See

For that "Aha!" moment, when you realise you've now got the confidence you always wanted.

Vanessa Amorosi: Shine

Everyone's gonna shine.

Steve Winwood: Back In The High Life

That's where you're going to be: Back in the high life again.… Continue reading…

Posted in Emotions | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on Music To Make You Happy When You Feel Sad

Primal Therapy

You spent over a decade being socialized by the school system: told to sit down, shut up, keep your feelings to yourself and be a good boy. Sure, you're a social being and a member of the tribe... but really deep down you're an animal. Primal therapy gets you back in touch with your animal instincts and your primal roots through a combination of anger expression exercises, chanting, dancing, and other primitive tribal rituals.

Advantages:

  • Hugely cathartic

  • Learn to express and release anger

  • The next best thing to an exorcism

  • You get in touch with your power as a man

Disadvantages:

  • How well would a raging beast of a man really function in today's society?

  • Some research suggests that expressing anger just makes you more angry

  • Disturbing the neighbors

Continue reading…
Posted in Therapy | Tagged , , | Comments Off on Primal Therapy

How to Meet Women

If you're lacking in confidence, meeting women can seems like a major challenge. You can't date women you can't meet, and this affects everything from your social life to your sex life. Approaching women in bars and clubs can be a hit and miss affair, and office romances can be problematic. But finding female company is easy once you know the secret to meeting women:

Get involved in activities that women also enjoy, over a period of time that gives them the chance to get to know you.

The best activities involve learning any new skill that women value which boosts your confidence, while meeting women in the process. This slips you in under the radar and makes you much more approachable than when you're obviously just “out to meet chicks”. Here are the best ways to go about this:

Take Dance Lessons

This is by far the most effective way of meeting women. All women love men who can dance, but many men are afraid of looking foolish and won't put up with the initial discomfort while they learn. Women respect men who are prepared to be vulnerable, and you become a hot commodity once you've mastered it. You'll learn to lead women, direct them in a firm way, and develop strong connections with women.… Continue reading…

Posted in Women | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Confidence, Cats In The Cradle and My Relationship with My Father

Harry Chapin's famous song Cats In The Cradle hits me emotionally every time I hear it. Whether it's his original, Cat Steven's even more well-known version, or more recent covers like the one by Ugly Kid Joe, it never fails to strike an emotional chord with me. I've spent the last 3 weeks learning to play it on my guitar, and when I play it myself it's even stronger.

Knowing what I know now, I'd say that my father lacks confidence and that's why he is so reluctant to share his feelings, and hard for other people to connect to. He was my natural role model and for a long time I emulated this too. As a result, I lacked confidence and we both had very little emotional connection.

The song connects me with the pain I still feel in my relationship with my emotionally distant father. Ironically, my father and I have a lot of time for each other and get together on a regular basis; we have even more time together now that he's retired and I'm working for myself. But there's a distance between us that I find painful.

My Dad was always there for me physically as I kid, and I don't ever recall brushing him off because I just wanted to borrow the car keys once he'd taught me how to drive.… Continue reading…

Posted in Relationships | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments