Change = Growth

How to reset the context of your current thinking by asking,”What’s in it for me?”


The trouble with using experience as a guide is that the final exam often comes first and then the lesson. ~Author Unknown


How many of you already have been accepted into a summer program or are still waiting to hear if you will be? Have you ever thought about why you were chosen? Here is the blunt answer – because there is something in the choice those in your program saw that fulfills their question of “What is in it for me”. We all unconsciously think this way; we just don’t know how to use it as a tool.

I ask the question, was this one of the criteria you thought about, “What’s in it for me” when you made the decision to apply to these programs? Or did you just want to make sure you did something – anything during the summer? If you ask that question of yourself, you must have an agenda, goal or plan in mind that you want to accomplish. Sure it feels risky, but if you continue to play it safe and not be open to taking risks, you can’t grow. And if you don’t grow you die…artistically, mentally, metaphorically, emotionally, and spiritually.

When you learn to use this way of thinking, this tool for yourself, once it becomes “Habitual” you will find, before the beginning of anything you do… all events, encounters, opportunities, errands auditions, performances, etc. you will ask yourself…“What is the outcome I want from this use of my time, energy and money, my three main resources and will it bring me closer to the realization of my agenda/plan?”

And the key outcome from this new habit, this personal questioning is, you will come to be more discerning, which allows you to grow, change and gain more confidence in the direction you want to go. So stop and ask yourself this question, “What’s in it for me?” each and every time you have a serious choice to make. The quicker your relationships (new or old) know you have an agenda, goal, and plan which is clearly understood because of your focus and behavior, the better they will understand you and your value to them at that moment! And believe it or not, the better they understand that you also have an agenda, goals, and a plan, your value to them increases and the more likely they will be to support, refer and confirm your worth to others. And that leaves a good taste in everyone’s mouth. Avanti and keep me in your loop please. I do care how this works for you. Have a prosperous summer of growth and calculated risk taking.



Carol Kirkpatrick

For as long as she can remember, singing and performing have always been in Carol Kirkpatrick’s blood. From her beginnings in a small farming town in southeastern Arizona, through her early first-place triumph at the prestigious San Francisco Opera Auditions, and subsequent career on international stages, Ms. Kirkpatrick has thrilled audiences and critics alike. “A major voice, one worth the whole evening.” (The New York Times) Since retiring from the stage, she continues to be in demand as a voice teacher, clinician, and adjudicator of competitions including the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions.  Combining her knowledge of performance, business, and interpersonal skills, she has written the second edition of her highly regarded book, Aria Ready: The Business of Singing, a step-by-step career guide for singers and teachers of singing.  Aria Ready has been used by universities, music conservatories and summer and apprentice programs throughout the world as a curriculum for teaching Ms. Kirkpatrick’s process of career development, making her “the” expert in this area.  She lives in Denver, Colorado.