Don’t Have to Try Too Hard

by Judy on August 20, 2013

So there I was sitting at the piano, determined to write something profound – life changing in fact. An hour later … nothing!

I sat there for an hour but no song came

I sat there for an hour – still no song

My angst reminded me of the story about the needy woman who called out to the heavens, “Help Meeeeeee …”  The answer came back, “LET GO !!!!!!!!” So the woman called again, “Is anyone else out there?”

There is never huffing, puffing or gritting of teeth in the creative process. It is a matter of surrendering. Totally!

I had temporarily forgotten to listen to my own knowing. All I needed was one more song for my new Time to Shine CD. “Focus Judy!” I told myself.

Nada. Zero. Zippo.

So what does a singer/songwriter do when she’s blocked? Get up and go off to the ‘letting go place’ – the Loo! The little jester ornament on the shelf made a face at me.

Time to Let Go

Time to Let Go

And guess what happened? I laughed at myself and said out loud, “You Don’t Have To Try Too Hard!”

Ta Dah!

I came right back to the piano and wrote the song by the same name. It’s light. It’s fun. It’s  laid back and jazzy. It’s easy and would you believe – profound!

Don’t have to try too hard, I don’t have to get it
Ain’t gonna worry no more
Instead of tryin’, I’m just gonna let it
Show me the open door

Ah, the free-floating feeling of simply Letting Go!

The subject of trying too hard reminds me of a 7-day personal development conference that I attended in the States. Friday through Sunday was high energy with dynamic speakers and world class singers.


Then came Monday morning. The mood was low and nostrils were flaring with stifled yawns. The first speaker of the day had prepared his talk with the intention of revving up the crowd. He began with a quote from Charles Fillmore who, at 93 years old said, “I fairly sizzle with zeal and enthusiasm and I spring forth with a mighty faith to do the things that ought to be done by me!”

Our speaker asked us to say this out loud with energy and passion! We mustered as much verve as we could and mumbled our assignment. Disappointed, the speaker commanded, “Once more and louder this time!” We did our best, affixed our plastic smiles and half-heartedly fizzled the sentence again. He tried and tried and we were really trying to try. It wasn’t working. My heart went out to him.

The interesting thing about that entire morning was that every speaker felt a bit off kilter. The next presenter arrived 10 minutes late. Another had just begun his talk when the sound system quit. The fourth one, who spoke just before lunch, was leading us into a meditation when … Crash! Bang! Clatter Clatter! … One of the servers dropped a whole tray of glasses. Finally, the speakers got real and saw the humor in the recurring theme of unexpected happenings. Everyone lightened up. All was well after all. We genuinely were ready to spring forth with zeal and enthusiasm (without even trying)!

National Theater School (Back L to R) Shelora, Bonnie Rose (Front L to R) Marilyn Lightstone, Judy Armstrong, John Juliani

National Theater School (Back L to R) Shelora, Bonnie Rose (Front L to R) Marilyn Lightstone, Judy Armstrong, John Juliani

Being centered in the present moment was one of the most important life skills that I was taught when I attended the National Theater School in Montreal. I learned to pull forth strong emotions which I could then shape and focus in a dramatic scene or improvisation. Concentration was one of the first exercises that we practiced. As an actor, you cannot create when you are off balance. You don’t force a feeling – it has to be completely honest and develops when you are true to yourself, relaxed and grounded.

We all have our own unique ways of returning to the place of stillness where we are receptive to whatever wants to be expressed through us. You will always know what works best for you. Often, I get up and do something completely different to get out of my own way. ‘Sleeping on it’ can also bring clarity. Sometimes when feelings such as loss, heartbreak or discouragement have surfaced, I have experienced the deepest healing by going deep into the center of them. Many of the songs on my first CD, Inside of Me, were intuited this way. If we feel down or blocked, it doesn’t mean we have to stay there. Life is fluid and forever changing. One way we can shift our energy is by ‘acting as if’.

I remember one holiday when our town parade was happening. I had been burning the midnight oil and just wanted to sleep in and maybe catch the parade at the last minute. However, my mom had other plans. She asked me to dress in my ‘Granny‘ character costume and ride in the Model T Ford with my step-father, George.

Judy as 'Granny' and George White in the Model T Ford

Judy as ‘Granny’ and George White in the Model T Ford

After only 3 hours of sleep, I dug out the Granny suitcase and began the transformation. Funny thing is, Granny started to take over. She sees the comical side of everything! Granny entertained, cavorted, had people laughing, called out and waved to everyone watching us drive by. She was just present and being her zany old self. And there I was – having fun right along with her. The whole day was lighthearted, silly and magical.

I have done much personal research in trying, forcing, and struggling. Well, been there – done that! It’s not right or wrong – just a learning experience. We do not have to impress anyone. We are worthy. We are awesome. We are enough!

In the Silence of each moment
All is well
Always has been
Always will be

There is order in the Universe. Beyond forcing, struggling, worrying or trying too hard, a world of wonder, ease and synchronicity awaits.

Emanuel says it this way:

You have become caught in the illusion that your identity rests with your capacity to struggle.
It does not. Your true identity is awaiting you beyond effort.”

Granny would put it like this …

“What makes ya think yer in control of everythin’? Let yer hair down and stop trying too hard. Even hens know that eggs come when they get laid!”

Creativity flows easily when you breathe into the moment and let go

Creativity flows easily when you breathe into the moment and Let Go!

And finally …

Just let go and Wham!
Don’t have to try too hard
Easy does it … Oh yeah!





To listen to a clip of my song, “Don’t Have to Try Too Hard” – Click HERE  Or to download a copy of the song for yourself for 99 cents – Go HERE

TIME TO SHINE COVER Download the whole CD here.

Click on COVER to download the whole CD







P.S. Check out my brand NEW From Spirit to Story to Song website home for more fun and inspirational stories that I would love to share with you too!

While you are there, download my song and FREE Gift for you, “Give Yourself Love”.

© Judy Armstrong 2013



{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

brnda forsey August 23, 2013 at 3:08 am

Fantastic Judy, well written, I love your sharing and your photo’s…and ofcourse your fabulous music! Thankyou for the gift o YOU! Take care….big hugs…Brenda


Judy August 23, 2013 at 1:11 pm

Hi Brenda, thanks so much for reading and commenting on my “Don’t Have to Try Too Hard” blog. This is such a fun song to sing. Hope you will sing it right along with me! Sending hugs back, Judy


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