I received a submission for this week's "Can I Please Speak To The Manager" from a longtime Wayland Warrior who works with children who have survived serious trauma. Ranging in ages from 13-17, he said they were stuck in apathy and he was hoping I would be able to offer words that would inspire them to change their future.
I had the honor of working with a dear friend, magical guitar player and human trafficking survivor just five days before when he sat me down and said, "Alyssa, just talking to you allowed me to go from whoa is me to whoa, it's me," and that power changed everything.
I offer these same words to these students to inspire them to take their power back from trauma and place that power back into themselves.
I manage a band, so I'm used to seeing performances.
I also live with my lead guitar player boyfriend, so I'm used to seeing practices.
Practice is for you. Performance is for everybody else.
A performance is staged, rehearsed, and scripted.
Practice is natural, organic, and in the moment.
A performance is for an audience. Practice is personal.
Who are you performing for?
Are you performing in your life? Or showing up to your life as a practice?
Do you restrict your body from dancing how it wants to for fear of what other people think?
Do you not sing as loud as high or as often because you're worried about what other's will hear?
Do you say what you mean and mean what you say?
Are you always the most authentic version of you?
Ask yourself "where am I performing?"
Practice makes perfect, not performance.
Are you lysstening?
Last year I was blessed enough to be watching Wayland perform a show at The Hollywood RV Park. In attendance was Shannon Sergey, founder of Forever Found. She had heard our song "No More," which was from Wayland's back catalogue that we had resurrected when we began working with Rock Against Trafficking.
After connecting with Shannon that night, we met for Thai and neither one of us ate our dinner. We ended up talking for four hours, closing down the restaurant, and taking it to-go. There was so much passion in her heart and truth in her soul for this cause. I was honored enough to take the Forever Found 40 hour mentorship course and become certified in Simi Valley. We played Forever Found's Gala in October and got to witness the stories of survivors and the passion of all of Forever Found's donors.
Forever Found exists for the prevention, rescue, and restoration of child trafficking victims. Globally, the rescues and restorations that they have taken part in are miraculous. I am proud to be a volunteer, supporter, and friend.
To get involved, pleas visit www.foreverfound.com
Human trafficking is an issue that is real on more days than just today. No children are safe until all children are safe. #NOMORE Human Trafficking
No, it's not what you think.
We think we're self conscious when we're really self judgmental and self critical.
Being self conscious means being conscious of self.
When you're conscious, you're aware.
When you have awareness, you are able to talk to the voice inside your head instead of lyssten to it.
When the voice inside your head says "you're not good enough," you're able to talk back to it and say, "yes I am."
Taylor Swift released “Folklore” and the entire music industry is raving about how she started country, went pop, and now is exploring folk/alternative, and it makes me smile how something like versatility, innovation, or the lack of being constricted to a label or box is such an act of rebellion.
When “Get A Little” went viral in 2012, several major labels called the band to work with them and certain executives offered feedback that they were “too rock for country” and “too country for rock and roll,” which still makes me laugh.
Rock and roll isn’t a “genre” it’s a feeling. When I was in 9th grade, I was obsessed with R&B. When I was in 10th grade, I was obsessed with emo, when I was in 11th and 12th grade I wanted to learn everything I could about rock and roll. In kindergarten, my favorite song was “Talk Dirty To Me By Poison,” yes really, and I didn’t start appreciating The Beatles catalogue until I started touring with Phillip, (I know, I’m disappointed too.)
Humans like to put things in boxes and labels because it’s easier to try to control things that way. When we think we’re in control, we feel safe, but the truth is, we don’t have control over anything.
“This is rock and roll.” “This is pop.” “This is what I like.” “This is what I don’t.”
When you put these limits upon yourself, you’re limiting your own experience. Being limitlyss is the key to in-joying life.
To feel safe is to surrender into the present moment, surrender into the unknown, surrender into the music. This feeling allows us to have each individual experience without judging it.
Rock and roll isn’t a “genre,” and you don’t have to put yourself in a category either. Be who you want to be, say what you want to say, and if that changes six times between now and breakfast, that’s okay too. You get to grow and evolve and change your opinions. You get to learn and become and you get to flow.
Rock and roll doesn't care what other people think. Rock and roll doesn't apologize. Rock and roll gets to be exactly what it is. Rock and roll gets to be messy and primal and make mistakes. You are rock and roll.
Today is Monday and for today's episode of Can I Please Speak To The Manager, Anna writes:
"Hello I do have a fan question for you where do you find enough courage to speak in front of large crowds and to be able to do what you do? I find that my low self esteem hits pretty hard when I’m trying a new adventure and instead of being in the front of my goals I am terrified of rejection. I know you prolly hear about a lot of everyone life story and their goals but I’m trying to become a member at my church and I freeze Everytime because I have to stand in front of a whole bunch of other members and tell them my faith walk and that scares me. I would rather sit in my church sound booth and light booth where I don’t have to talk to anyone I’m trying to move to charleston SC and apply to college out there and the fear of that rejection is sickening too! So to roll with the punches sometimes or to “shake your ass and save your soul” I haven’t found the right amount of courage yet for all of my adventures! My low self esteem has gotten me to a point where I started working out a lot it started when fitness with Phil went live. The normalcy of our lives since this shutdown has seriously went out the window and it sometimes takes a toll on my mental health. My work made us work from home and I seriously just miss my work desk!! But the screen saver on my laptop is a pic of me and my favorite boys that help me get through a lot!!"
I remind Anna that I am fearlyss not fear-less, meaning I still experience fear, I just choose to move forward anyway. I use "lyss" in all of my writing not because I am obsessed with myself, but so I can remember not to forget myself. We use this same tactic to ANNA-lyze everything Anna says in today's video.
Thank you Anna for letting me lyssten.
To submit a question for "Can I Please Speak To The Manager," comment below , email email@example.com, or send a DM via social media.
Be The Lion is on the radio. Be The Lion is on the radio. BE THE LION IS ON THE RADIO!
It doesn’t matter how many times Wayland charts, what number they rank on Billboard BDS, or how often I see their song title come across the touchscreen in my car, Wayland being on the radio is exciting. Apple Music & Spotify streams mean a lot, but the feeling of being in your car and not knowing when it’s going to play and finally hearing it is the same feeling I get on my birthday or Christmas morning.
I knew nothing about radio before Wayland. I knew it was something I listened to, but until actually, physically waking up at 5am and walking in with them for an interview, radio was just an abstract concept to me.
Like most people, I thought a radio was something that played music, but unlike most people, I like to learn, like, a lot. Like, an abnormal amount. So just going to the radio station wasn't enough for me, I had to actually figure out what radio was. Bare with me, this is going to be a fun one.
When you listen to the radio, you only hear what station you’re dialed into. If I’m listening to WJJO, I’m not going to hear what’s broadcasting on KOZE. We know that KOZE still exists, we just in that moment are choosing to listen to the signal on WJJO. Both are real, both are available, but I'm making a choice what to tune into. I have the power of choice to tune into anything I want. Hold that thought.
"Radio" actually means sending energy with waves. (Thank you Dallas Hall for late night sound guy sessions.) It's a way that you transmit energy from one place to another. Radio waves are sent out via transmitters and received via receivers. How does this happen? Electromagnetic energy aka, a combination of electricity and magnetism that move like waves in the ocean, and that's ladies and gentlemen how we get "radio waves."
SO what does this have to do with you, me, Wayland, or Be The Lion? Everything. Because you, my lysstener, are the music and you are the radio.
What station are you tuned into?
What energy are you transmitting?
What energy are others receiving from you?
Are you making waves with your energy in a way that's loving?
Or are others being sucked underneath the surface as you pull them down with you?
Your energy is magnetic, and quite literally you will attract a perfect match to whatever signal you're broadcasting. Are you going to attract love and happiness and success because that's what you're emitting? I hope so.
The cool thing is that if you don't like what's playing, you can always tune into another station. Remember WJJO and KOZE? They're both playing Be The Lion, so lysstening to both of them works for me- but I always have the choice of what I'm tuning into. I can listen to either one I want. So can you.
If you realize you're broadcasting straight static confusion and chaos like AM radio, you don't have to keep lysstening. You can always tune into something else, easily and immediately.
I'm not one that believes in "good vibes only," I think there's room for all the vibes. I wish I could say ballads and love songs were all that I broadcasted out to the world, but "the lie detector test determined that was a lie." Sometimes I'm encouraging you to Be The Lion, other times I love everyone and remind you that She Lights It Up.
On a less than happy day, I'm not afraid to admit that I graduated in 2007 and there is still an emo kid living deep inside of me. Tuning into those feelings instead of shutting them off keeps you in harmony with the music, whatever music is playing.
The moral of the story is that if you don't like your own tune, you have the power to change the station.
Are you playing Be The Lion? I'm lysstening...
I flew across the country and spent six days with my mom and five brothers and sisters for her birthday. I haven't gotten to do that since I started touring with Wayland, and although I spent many mornings and nights working, the time we got to spend together was worth the fourteen hour travel day and lack of sleep.
Today is my first day back in my office, not working from a bed or an airport, and if this were any other time in my life, I would dread the six page to do lysst that I had waiting for me when I started at six am. The difference between then and now is that I don't have a job, I have a joy. I can't believe I get to do what I do everyday and call it "work."
It's interesting since I'm doing the same thing I was before. I'm still taking phone conferences, still completing expense reports, still organizing my calendar and planning meetings. Different industry, but same process, and this time it's my company and my process and if anything fails it comes back on me. The stakes are higher but the reward is greater. I used to dread the very things that make me the happiest now.
My day started at 6am and likely won't end until 10 or 11 tonight, and within that timeframe I won't complain that I'm tired, wish it was time to go home, or complain about my boss, (I think she's kicking some ass.)
Triple H says “It’s not the years, it’s the miles," and I've put in a lot of miles, on the road, and today pacing back and forth in my office. My job is my joy and if you're wrestling with feeling that way about yours, I encourage you to check your mileage, tune up, and tune in. What direction are you heading, how fast, and for who? I hope it's you.