10% forest, 90% trees

It can be overwhelming for a singer to look at the entirety of their career. What's the next move? How am I doing? What do I need to work on? It's difficult to "zoom out" and clearly see the "forest for the trees."

I've found a lot of peace in my career by focusing instead on my short-term goals as a singer and a teacher. These are much more concrete, manageable, and achievable. It is satisfying to hit my daily practice goal or to schedule that next recital or to see my students succeed in memorizing a piece or achieving a technical milestone. These are the "trees" of our singing practice. Added together, they of course make a "forest." But as a young singer it is so intimidating to look at older singers and see the amassed experience of years and decades of a career.

So my goal for myself and for my students is to spend 10% of our time evaluating the "forest" so that we know where we stand. But let's spend 90% of our time, the vast majority of our energy and time, working on the small goals, the incremental wins, that amass with time, diligence, and patience.