Having the motivation and determination to progress is essential for vocal success. For some, the challenge is beginning; for others, the issue lies in maintaining their momentum. If you have vocal potential but don't know how to start your singing journey, you must set a proper plan for your singing career.

In this episode of The Intelligent Vocalist podcast, John Henny teaches us that our thoughts are at the core of everything. Often, however, we waste so much time thinking unproductive thoughts. With that, he opens the door for you and me to establish the mindset of vocal breakthroughs.

John does this in a way that will make it less complicated for you to understand the process and make you more excited to participate in the journey. So, read more to learn what the renowned vocal coach has to share.

The New Year's Resolution Mindset

photo of list of new year's resolutions

Whenever a new year dawns, many people make resolutions as part of their yearly tradition. We often see "New Year, New Me" captions as a sign of optimistic people setting goals for the year ahead.

But how many people have you seen thrive? How many of them have actually worked throughout the year to achieve a breakthrough?

We might be more used to feeling complacent and getting a little slower as days pass by. After some time, we find ourselves setting the same new year's resolution over and over again.

These resolutions could be to take your vocal training more seriously this year, work toward becoming a professional singer, or leave your lack of confidence in the past year.

John recommends breaking down your plans into three-month chunks rather than aiming for an entire year. He shares his strategy on how to keep heading in the right direction with vocal progress, using this technique as a guide.

How to Establish the Right Moves to Achieve Vocal Breakthrough

photo of a poker hand

The words for you today are: the right moves.

Getting to your vocal breakthrough is comparable to the game of poker. You're trying to figure out your best move with only snippets of what's going on, and you have to deduce from what you are seeing.

No one knows what our future holds, so we can just make use of what we've learned in the past year to help us get into our goals for this year. Nevertheless, we should always find ways to align the movement and capacity of our conscious mind, subconscious mind, and body in order to achieve a wide range of goals.

In finding the right moves to achieving a vocal breakthrough, John shares four holistic approaches you can use.

Think General to Specific

photo of wooden blocks that say

John suggests that it is important to think from general to specific when it comes to achieving vocal breakthroughs. This means that you should start by setting a broad goal and then break it down into smaller goals.

For example, if your goal is to become a professional singer, find what you'd consider "the best move" you can make to achieve it. Then, think of what you can do to attain this goal in the next three months. From there, identify what you'd do for this month. What's your plan for the week? What's on your to-do list today? What are you doing at the moment?

Let's say you want to be a part of the music industry and become a recording artist. Taking part in a coaching program could help you with this goal. In the first month, for example, you can consistently attend a 5-week program to help you with your vocal performances.

For the week, you may begin vocal exercises. For today, you can look back to your vocal recordings and identify which aspect of your singing career you should focus on in the following months to enhance your vocal confidence.

Once you have set your goal, it is essential to break it down into smaller tasks and create an action plan. This will help you remain on the trail and make sure you are progressing.

Create a Positive Attitude

illustration of what positive thinking affects

It's important to remember that you can only expect to make progress if you believe in yourself and your abilities. You can take part in as many coaching sessions all you want, but if you do not establish the right mindset, all your efforts may end up useless.

John suggests asking ourselves questions such as:

Am I feeding myself positive material?
Am I not getting caught up in impostor syndrome and beating myself down?
Do I dwell in the gaps in my singing, instrument, and musicality?

Asking yourself these questions could help us to focus on the present and take actionable steps.

Discover Your Gifts

photo of notebook listing strengths and weaknesses

Recognizing what you are naturally good at and what you need to work on is essential. This will help you focus on the areas that need improvement and develop a plan of action for how to achieve your goals.

John shared a time when he was looking around YouTube and happened to watch some old Buddy Rich appearances on The Tonight Show he used to enjoy as a kid. The level of skill, raw talent and facility of that individual is just a result of his apparent overabundance of fast-twitch muscles that nature has given him. He can do amazing things on the drums.

Take note that John also played drums for several years. During those times, he had also compared himself to certain drummers.

Now, how would you feel if you were in his situation and saw someone who's so gifted in an activity, sport, or skill you're so passionate about?

Discovering your gifts implies that, regardless, cultivating your talent is always an option. These are the thoughts that lead to breakthroughs, not beating yourself up, bemoaning what you don't have, or comparing yourself to others.

Do the Work with the Right Actions

photo of steps to an action plan

It's easy to get caught up in the idea of success, but it takes hard work and dedication to make it happen. John had students who identified the issues they wanted to work on, so they could formulate the right actions to fix or overcome them.

What he did was to give the exercises. Generally, those activities include:

bringing the right thoughts into the picture
focusing attention on what matters
identifying the right moves

Everyday Actions that are More of a Hindrance than Help

Some actions can be a hindrance to achieving vocal breakthroughs. We often get caught up in the mundane tasks of life and forget to take time for ourselves.

We may think we are too busy or don't have enough time to focus on our singing goals, but this is not true. Other times, we may assume our actions are helpful but they actually slow down the process.

Wasting Time on Things that Don't Make You Productive

woman at her laptop scrolling on her phone

We often find ourselves wasting time on things that don't make us productive. We might be scrolling through social media, watching TV, or playing video games. These activities can be fun and entertaining, but they don't necessarily help us reach our goals.

Social media isn't bad. In fact, it helps us learn so many things with just a few clicks. However, if there's no proper application of what we've learned there, then it isn't a part of the vocal breakthrough journey.

Not Attending Regular Voice Lessons

photo of two women in a vocal lesson

Not attending regular voice lessons can be a significant obstacle to achieving vocal breakthroughs. It can be challenging to make progress in your singing journey without proper guidance and instruction. The sessions can help you improve or discover aspects that would help you as an individual singer.

In addition to vocal training, you can supplement your studies by taking guitar and piano lessons. Knowing how to play instruments can accelerate your musical learning and give you a greater understanding of your voice.

Not Having the Right Thoughts

photo of a man with his hands on his head looking frustrated

Having the right thoughts is essential for vocal breakthroughs. Getting caught up in negative and unproductive thinking is easy, leading to a lack of motivation and progress. To avoid this, it's essential to focus on building positive thoughts that will help you reach your goals.

Final Words

John's advice is to break down your goals into smaller chunks and focus on the present. This will help you stay motivated and focused on achieving vocal breakthroughs. It's important to remember that it takes time and effort to reach your goals, so don't be discouraged if you don't see results right away. With the right mindset, dedication, and determination, you can experience breakthroughs and achieve your goals.

Staying in Touch

If you want to know more about John, you can visit johnhenny.com. There you can listen to previous episodes of The Intelligent Vocalist podcast, as well as access his blog posts. Join John's mailing list to get special offers that are exclusive to his mailing list, and stay up to date on new courses and books.