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Susan Boyle’s Moment


I’m sure you’ve all heard about Susan Boyle by now. You know, the woman who got up in front of Britain (and before she knew it, the world), to sing on the show “Britain’s Got Talent?” If you haven’t, I really urge you to take a moment to watch this video. I’ve seen it I don’t know how many times, and I still well up with tears every time:

Susan Boyle’s YouTube Audition

So what has made this woman such a phenomenon? Why are people watching this over and over again? I think it’s the instant, visual, living, breathing example of the power of being true to one’s self. For me, when I watch the audience in the video roll their eyes at her dream, make fun of her and think that she is out of her mind to think that she has a chance at being a professional singer, I can’t help but think of how many times other peoples’ opinions have stopped me from doing what I love. But Susan doesn’t allow it to stop her. Sure, she is clearly nervous and anxious. But she stands there in the face of snickers, doubt, mockery, cynicism and her own nerves. She takes it all. She opens her mouth.

And she sings anyway.

To watch the transformation, no the revolution, that takes place the second the audience hears her voice is so moving to me that I almost don’t know how to describe it. There are so few moments in life where we get to actually watch greatness take over and beat out ugliness and doubt. This is one of those moments. I find it magical.

The magic to me is that she had the courage to open her mouth and do what she loves — in the face of ridicule, naysayers and fear — and the world fell in love with her. We can’t help but be attracted to people who are being true to themselves. It’s part of our human nature.

And as the audience leaps to its feet and the tide turns from cynicism to encouragement, support and awe, Susan’s voice gets stronger. It’s a visible transformation. I believe this is what happens when we are doing what we love. Support and energy naturally come our way. It can’t be any other way. Watch the audience reaction when Susan starts singing, they can’t help but leap to their feet and start cheering. Even the hypercritical Simon is clearly moved, and boasts a big beautiful smile.

I watch this video when I feel like the naysayers are too much. When I feel like my dreams are silly or can’t possibly ever happen. I watch this 47-year-old unemployed, never-been-kissed, cat-loving woman transform herself into a world famous singer. And I get to watch it happen in 15 seconds. It gives me the courage and motivation to keep going. If Susan Boyle from a little village can do this, who am I not to do it too.

As of this writing, Susan has 1,724,127 fans on Facebook, and that video has been watched some 11,800,000 times. I don’t think I’m the only one feeling the power of this moment in the video. It’s a beautiful thing to watch. I truly believe it’s something that anyone can have.

That being said, it’s not just handed out because we want it. It takes an incredible amount of courage, conviction and faith in one’s self. Opportunities must be seized and risks must be taken. Every day I am faced with the choice of sitting on my rear end and watching my life go by, or doing something, anything, that will bring me closer to fulfilling my dreams.

It takes nothing to have an ordinary life. It’s very easy to sit on the couch and pass the Cheetos, um I mean carrots, back and forth and judge the people who are up the stage putting it all on the line. It’s so easy to be the judge of those who are taking risks and playing big, while I do nothing to put myself in the limelight. It’s easy to make fun of others when I never risk looking like a fool because I dared to put my vision on the line.

I’m up for something more than the couch after work every night. I’m up for the life I really want, and I know that means I may have to be the one people watch and judge. I’m up for it.

Here’s to getting off the couch.

p.s. Susan was so afraid to do this (as you can see from her shaking at the end of the video), that it took a conversation with her mother on her mother’s deathbed to get her to that stage. Her mother told her that she should always go for her dreams, to make sure she makes it happen. That’s what had her audition for the show. Never under estimate the power of moms, right?  And being a mother, I know I can see the potential that my children have. Amazing how it’s so hard for me to see that for myself, but I’ll save that for another article…

Author: Sarah

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