On today’s episode of Creative Space, I’m sharing a new step in my creative journey: freeing my voice. For 8 long years, I didn’t talk about my epilepsy diagnosis publicly, and repressing it had a lot of unintended consequences, including blocking my creative flow.
I hope my experience and insight can serve to help anyone else out there who may be feeling stuck creatively.
I only went public about my epilepsy a month ago, with an article I wrote called “What Living With Epilepsy is Really Like,” and you can read that here if you’re interested.
The minute I took that scary step, I felt so much freer. Like a huge weight was lifted off of me.
And the more I allowed myself to examine the impact of hiding my story, I saw how it changed my whole creative trajectory—I gave up music slowly, which really hurt my soul. (If you’re interested in hearing about this, check out the podcast episode all about it, “The Impact of Epilepsy On My Creative Journey.”)
So now, I’m in the process of freeing my voice, both physically (by working with a vocal coach for the first time in decades) and creatively (by being unafraid to write through what I’m going through).
I also found a little inspiration on the day of recording this podcast when I listened to Jay Shetty interview Paris Hilton about her memoir, and how she turned pain into purpose. His podcast is incredible, one of the best, and this episode is so powerful. You can listen here.
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0:54—The freedom of opening up about epilepsy
1:20—The fears I fought through
2:25—We all heal in different ways at different paces
3:11—How giving up music chipped away at me
4:13—Burying my own voice
5:00—The journey to reclaiming my voice
5:22—In vulnerability comes healing and empowerment
5:32—Jay Shetty + Paris Hilton interview about turning pain into purpose
6:37—How sharing our story can create a better world
7:40—Asking God for guidance
7:57—Getting on the mic at Ron DiSilvestro’s Studio 4 Workshop
9:00—Making the decision to resume vocal training
9:21—Freeing my emotional AND physical voice
10:00—Why we should all train our voice to open up creatively
Hello, everyone and welcome to another episode of creative space, a Podcast where we explore, learn and grow in creativity together. My name is Jennifer Logue, and today, we are talking about freeing the voice. And in particular, the story of how I'm freeing my voice. I hope it helps anyone out there who might be struggling to free their voice as well, both their creative voice as well as their physical voice, which are both connected, by the way, and I'll get to that later in the episode. It's been a little over a month, since I first went public about being diagnosed with epilepsy. I wrote an article on my website and shared it not only on my personal social channels, but my LinkedIn as well. It was scary, but it was so freeing, a huge weight was immediately lifted. If you're interested in reading it, I'll link to it in the show notes. This was something I had been keeping to myself, for the last eight years of my life, mainly out of fear. Fear of being turned down for work was the main one, we all need money to survive. And outside of what I earn, I don't have financial support. And this is especially difficult as a single woman. But that's another story for another day. Then there's this fear of never finding love. Dating is already difficult, but add on managing epilepsy and the stigma it carries this decision to go public could impact that even more. Long story short, there was a lot of risk with my decision to be open about my epilepsy, personally, socially, romantically career wise. But despite all of this, and all of the other fears that held me back from doing this for eight long years, it was so worth it. Now, do I recommend everyone who's going through something to immediately go public, so that they can feel better to know, we all heal in different ways, at different paces. At this particular point in my life, it was quite clear that this was something I had to do in order to move forward. The process of being ready for this took eight years though, I wouldn't have been ready for this even a year ago. All this time, I'd been working on myself, you know and to be ready to be open. And that journey is going to be different for everyone. But now the cats out of the bag. What's next? Something I discussed on the podcast as a follow up to the article was how epilepsy changed my creative journey. I stopped seeing a career in music as a viable option. And out of necessity for stability. Somewhere in my life. I focused on working a nine to five job and cast music aside, I began labeling it as a hobby. And I guess, in my sadness, I started practicing less and less. I stopped performing, I stopped recording. And that slowly chipped away at my spirit. Whether I realized it at the time or not sure, I was working in creative jobs versus Metro is the arts and culture editor, and then as a copywriter in the agency world. But I wasn't expressing myself. My own voice. My own experience started getting buried, as I put all of my passion and purpose into supporting everyone else. Now, I don't regret that time at all, especially my time at Metro. It was probably the most enriching part of my life up until now. I learned so much and got so inspired. I got to experience Philly in such a unique way. And advertising has made me such a better creative. It's made me so much more disciplined in my creativity. It's made me fall in love with creativity on such a deep level. But now it's time for me to bring all of this together and start being an artist again. That means a lot of different things for a lot of different people. But for me, it means sharing my story, my experience through writing, and through music, being vulnerable, being truly vulnerable in the art I'm creating. Because in that, in that vulnerability comes healing, in that comes empowerment, not only for myself, but for others as well. And on that note, I want to take a second to talk about a podcast episode I listened to you today that relates to this topic, the good that can come out when we talk about things that are painful. The podcast is Jay Shetty is on purpose. And I've been a fan for a while now. He always seems to have an episode that relates exactly to what I'm going through at a particular moment in time. Anyway, I recently interviewed Paris Hilton about her memoir, where she opens up about the physical, verbal and sexual abuse, she suffered for two years at an emotional growth boarding school, a link to the episode because it's so powerful. I can't do it justice here. Her story is very different from mine. But what I loved is how she turned pain into power. I also love what Jay says in the episode about talking about things that are painful. He says if we start giving ourselves more grace, and judge ourselves less, and share our story, despite the fear of being judged by others, we as a result will judge others less and give others more grace when they share their stories. So there's this potential to create a more compassionate society. But change begins with being compassionate with ourselves. So imagine that when we are vulnerable and open with our pain, expressing it freeing our voice, we as a result will judge others less will be more compassionate on the receiving end. So in time, the world will be a safer space for all of us to be open. It's a beautiful thought. And I had to share it here in the context in this conversation about freeing the voice. So please give the episode a listen, if you get a chance. I'll link to it in the show notes. But back to sharing my story through writing and music. The path is revealing itself slowly, being closer to God than I've ever been. I make every decision with him now. I get quiet. I listen. And I asked for his guidance and showing me the way. One step was signing up for a recording course at Studio four. It happens to be run by the last producer, I recorded a song with the incredible run diesel Destro. And given it was a recording course, I wasn't expecting to be doing anything, just learning and taking notes. So you can imagine, when Ron asks me if I wouldn't mind singing at the session to test out different mics and to display different vocal recording techniques. I was not ready at all, my voice had cobwebs all over it. But I said yes. Anyway, the end product was far from perfect. On my end, he's a master. But it gave me confidence. I as a vocalist wasn't too far gone from where I left off. But I had this other urge while I was standing there in the vocal booth to start training with a vocal coach again. And in the last month, I've started that process as well. And it feels so right. I don't know what to expect, but it just feels like I'm on the right path. What I've learned in this short time is that I wasn't only feeling trapped emotionally from not talking about epilepsy. But repressing my story impacted my singing voice as well. Heck, even my speaking voice. I've been carrying so much tension in my neck, shoulders, tongue. And all of this affects your speaking and your singing voice. And that tension adds up over the course of eight years, especially when you throw in a global pandemic and everything else that's been going on. So I'm back to the basics. I've been singing since I was eight. years old, but I'm approaching this training as if I am brand new. I'm taking baby steps. I'm tearing down all the bad habits that I have. So I can release that tension rebuild. See how it makes me a better human and a better artist? Why am I sharing this? Well, I think it can help artists from all mediums go deeper in their craft, by taking the time to work on their voice, their actual physical voice, I think it can really help you know, in your ability to express yourself. We are vocal creatures. And when the voice is trapped physically, I think it blocks whatever we're creating as well. I highly recommend if you have the time and resources to do a vocal course of sorts, even if it's just public speaking. I can't tell you how much more connected to my spirit. I already feel now that I'm seeing everyday again. Now that I'm taking baby steps to free my physical voice, as well as my creative voice. Anyways, that's all I have for this episode. If you have any questions for me, feel free to reach out on social media at Jennifer Logue. And if you like the podcast, please, please, please leave a review on Apple podcasts so more people can discover it. I appreciate your support so much. My name is Jennifer Logue and thanks for listening to this episode of creative space. Until next time,