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Misconceptions about Voice: Helene Goldnadel

1. My voice cannot be changed.

In a way, it is correct. Your voice is who you are and reflects you physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. It is like your fingerprint and uniquely yours. Your voice can't be changed; neither can you sound like others.

It sounds sad. However, your voice can be improved in your own way. Most people, maybe including you, are not producing their sound in a proper way. They have too much tension in them which is restricting their voice production; they may also have mental concerns that are holding them back from producing a richer sound. If you could release all those tension or concerns and learn the correct way to produce your sound, you will hear a better voice and you are going to love it. The fact is: you have a richer, fuller and more confident voice inside. Are you willing to discover and develop it?

2. A good voice means a deeper voice.

A good voice is not necessarily a deeper voice. You might have seen much online information, like how to develop a deeper voice, or how to sound deeper. They are misleading. To develop a good voice is not about going deeper. In fact, if you purposely press your voice down to a lower end, you won't feel comfortable and it won't last long. To develop your good voice is about finding a fuller and richer sound in you, a sound that is expressed freely and full of resonance and harmony.

3. Speaking is just using my mouth or throat.

Your voice is not just tripping from your throat and coming through your mouth. Your voice connects with every part of you and reflects who you are. When you speak, all your vocal organs are engaged and vibrating. Make full use of them, activate your whole body and you will produce a powerful sound.

4. To increase my volume, I have to shout.

Shouting is your pitch going up, which hurts your vocal folds and others' ears. Increasing your volume refers to the change in the amount of your sound. Volume and pitch are two different things. Most people cannot differentiate them clearly.

To better help you understand the difference, think about this:

When you turn up the volume of your iPod while listening to a song, does the singer's pitch also go up? Most likely, no.

To increase your volume in the correct way, you must have the diaphragm to support your breathing and use your pelvic muscle. Increasing your volume correctly, you will not only create no damage to anyone, but sound more serious.

5. Voice training means to sound good.

Voice training is more about opening up yourself, both mentally and physically. It's about helping you speak with your whole body, not just your mouth or your throat. Those elements that will make you sound good, e.g. inflections, rhythm, are like the decorations lying around the main dish. What will happen to them if your main dish tastes terrible?

You have a better sound inside. Work with it, use it to its full capacity, and you will discover the power of your voice, be it to influence others or transform yourself.

Helene Goldnadel is a life coach, a voice and speech coach and trainer.

HG Nadel has been working with children in voice placement, voice projection and has kept countless young performers from the painful damage which vocalist experience when they do not sing from the diaphragm.

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