The thing with musicians is that our hobby is our work

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I often meet nice, colorful and inspiring people. One man I recently met is called Roberto, he is a musician and teaches private classes to children and adults in The Hague. I asked if he wanted to be featured on my blog. He was glad to be and below you can read the result.

1. How did you start out as a music teacher?

I started out as a part time job while studying music. It turned out there was a high demand for music teachers for children, to me it seemed a natural job to do. With time I realized how much I like it. I received many positive feedback of students who were happy with my classes.

2. What is your music background in terms of education, experience and passion?

It all started very early. Through my parents I have been listening to classical music since I remember. We were listening music together, talking about it and playing games like “Who made this music, Mozart or Beethoven”. Then as a teenager I started to listen to bands and contemporary music. I always met up with friends to listen and see videos of music. I didn’t play my mom’s guitar, that was resting in its case for ever, until a school teacher taught us to play guitar. Then I had a couple of good private teachers and it became clear that I wanted to be a musician. I have a bachelor in arrangements and composition of popular music in Santiago, Chile, and a master’s degree in Sonology (electronic and computer music) from the Royal Conservatory in The Hague. There I acquired another passion which is computer programming related to sound and music.

3. How did you end up teaching in the Netherlands?

In 2002 I came to study Sonology. First it helped me during my studies, but eventually it became my main job.

4. Could you describe the people you teach; adults and children? What type of instruments do you teach?

I teach mainly children in the age range of about 7 till 18 years old. I do teach a few passionate adults too. I mostly teach guitar but also solfège, theory and harmony, depending the interest of the student. And to some I also teach how to produce music in a home studio situation.

5. What type of music do you like?

All type, but when it comes to listening music by myself, I like the kind of introspective one, music that searches the hidden corners of the consciousness. It might be the singing of African Pygmy, or an orchestral piece by Arvo Part. But it all depends on the situation of course. In general, my preference goes out to music that is an expression of an artistic or personal neccessity rather than music made with commercial goals.

6. What do you love most of teaching?

It is really rewarding to see my students achieving things that at the beginning appeared to be impossible to them.

7. What are your interests besides teaching music?

The thing with musicians is that our hobby is our work, but besides that, I like to travel, to meet new people and places, to eat well and healthy and to enjoy nature, but mostly spend time with my family and to see how my daughter grows.

8. How can people get in touch with you for music lessons?

People can write to me at garretonroberto@gmail.com. I teach in English, Spanish and Dutch.

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Life Coaching: my journey in rebirthing

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This year my summer holidays wasn’t only about going to the beach, eating ice cream, reading books, discovering new spots nor any arty farty stuff while a Summer storm ravaged the Hague. Lots of my attention went to rebirthing. Out of pure necessity.

Day in and day out I have guided rebirthing sessions. I’ve undergone rebirthing sessions as well and it has been an exciting and insightful journey inwards. It all started in February this year. My partner came back from a rebirthing weekend organised by an institute named AUMM. His rebirthing experience and stories about other people’s sessions made me very curious. As if my wish was picked up by the universe, I am enormously grateful that I was guided into a rebirthing session only one week later. I cried unstoppably and without a sense of time for an hour.

Let me explain to you what rebirthing does. Rebirthing consists of different breathing techniques, but the one breathing technique which activates surpressed emotional blockages goes as follows: while breathing we connect inhalation with exhalation and exhalation with inhalation, in doing so we create a circular motion of breath. In rebirthing this is called ‘connected breathing’. This connected breathing could activate different physical symptoms like feeling cold all over your body or the opposite super hot like fire, a tingling sensation in arms, legs, face or just about everywhere, itching and the sensation of wanting to curl your feet up or move your knees from side to side. Whichever physical symptom arises depends on who you are, what kind of emotional trauma’s you’ve had and in which stage of emotional consciousness you are in.

By the end of June I started using ‘connected breathing’ in my coaching practice in combination with coaching techniques such as Neuro Linguistic Programming and Social Panorama. The results were fenomenal. In this stage my experience was only based upon my and my partner’s rebirthing experiences and by reading the books written by the founders of the AUMM institute. Before I decided to put my knowledge and experience to practice I had been through a major personal development regarding my role as a professional life coach; I had eagerly watched Suzanne Powell on YouTube and it was the first time in years that I found myself a teacher, someone I wanted to learn from. Her knowledge and experience affirmed how I live and think as I guide others to discover themselves while letting go of emotional burden.

Parallel to this development I struggled a week long with different life courses I could run: shall I write my book on high sensitivity, attend a four-year study on rebirthing or go for our second child? Off course I discussed all of this with my partner. After some talk we decided to go for our second child. I am happy to announce that I am almost four months into pregnancy. So ‘rebirthing’ has another meaning to me; going for our second real-time birth experience! I have to say, this life changing decision has put every work-relation ambition I had in a broader perspective. Off course writing a book and study can wait, but I would have been enlightened If I didn’t struggle with the following: how can I continue my journey in rebirthing when my full attention went to family and working life?

Out of personal and professional interest I did find time to read the books on rebirthing. And somehow the answer to my question just appeared out of doing my work. While guiding sessions one day I used the rebirthing technique without a lot of thinking. As I guide intuitively I just do what I feel is needed to enable the coachee to let go of limiting thoughts, behavior and emotions. As I have mentioned before, the results were fenomenal. Rebirthing to me has shown it’s positive effects while guiding people who have a hard time talking about their feelings. The positive results took me to investigate the topic even more. Within a short period of time I have mastered this skill with help of books, YouTube video’s, pure practice and loads of reflection; writing down every single detail of the rebirthing process.

This blog closes off an insightful and breathtaking Summer holidays, but the journey continues! As I mentioned in the first paragraph, this journey was started out of necessity. Some people who follow my writings already know, but to the ones who don’t know, my partner is suffering a severe headache for almost six years. So embarking on this journey wasn’t because we were so thrilled to cry our eyes out, instead we had a goal in mind and this is ‘living a life in good and vibrant health’. Before I go, there is one more detail I would like to share: one tiny part of me questioned my professionalism in embarking our rebirthing journey without having done a four-year long study. At the beginning of this week I got hold of a book by Susanna Tamaro ‘Louisito’. On the back of the book I read that she acquired international fame by one of her books called ‘Follow Your Heart’. I went online to read some reviews and came across the paragraph below:

‘And when later many paths open for you and you are not sure which one to take, don’t haphazardly choose a path, but sit and wait. Breathe with full confidence as deep as you breathed on the day you came into the world, without being distracted by something, wait and keep waiting. Do not move, be quiet and listen to your heart. Whenever that speaks to you, get up and follow his voice.’ ~ Susanna Tamaro

These words took away my doubt. I am very happy and grateful to have followed the voice of my heart. The rebirthing journey continues while every cell in my body vibrates of professionalism and a strong motivation to live my life in good health and help others to live theirs.

Backwards blogging

Sometimes I don’t feel like writing at all. Most of the time this is due lack of energy. Sometimes due lack of inspiration. After weeks and weeks of no writing I suddenly have the urge to write about everything. Everything that happened, is happening or is going to happen. Thinking of my blog I was like ‘blogging is what you do on a daily basis’ and not about something which happened weeks ago. This thought gave me the feeling as if was stuck in a jar and I couldn’t get the lid open. Yuk!!

So to get the lid open to grasp for fresh air I invented ‘backwards blogging’ for myself. I just pick a date from my google agenda and think about the things I did on this particular day. What was so extraordinary about this day? Did I learn something? Did I laugh outloud or was I angry as hell?

Today is Wednesday the 15th of December. Thinking back about the 18th of November I remember going to a workshop organized by Giving Back.

The workshop was about how to choose the right education after highschool. Two teachers of ‘de Haagse Hogeschool’ (a Dutch university) were telling about the criteria you need to take into consideration, internet tools which could help in taking the right decision and how it would be like to study at ‘de Haagse Hogeschool’. The information was really interesting. So much has changed within the educational system since I graduated from my Bachelor Communication at the ‘Hogeschool Inholland’ in Rotterdam in 2004. Nowadays students need to know in a very early stage what they would like to study when the’re like 16,17 or 18 years old. Around the age of 14 they choose for a package of subjects which already defines the studies they could choose from when they make the change from highschool to university.

As a consequence I believe that we need to take more time to guide our children to make the right choices. Choices which reflect there qualities.

More photos of my Giving Back activities, click here!