I Wanna be a Rock Star

Notes on Creativity theme of the week:
Creating Personalities


Watch President Obama and you will see the embodiment of charisma. There is something about him that draws you in, makes you hang on every word he says.

Rock stars have it too, that very same something.

It’s hard to put a finger on what exactly it is, but whatever it is, I don’t have it. I have too many characteristics that get in the way and not enough of the magic.

Tonight, I wanted to capture charisma even for just one moment, even for just one song. That’s right, I played ‘charismatic karaoke rock star’.

The last time I did karaoke I did it as myself. This time, I did it as the original singer of the song I chose, watching him in my head as I sang, doing what he did, feeling what I imagined he felt. Mic in hand, I put on my slickest, smoothest voice, grabbed control of the stage, and invited the audience into the heart of the song.

Did I actually exude charisma? I don’t know. But I felt free, sure, strong, passionate as I imagined myself as a rock star.

It makes me wonder if charisma is something you’re born with or something you can learn. I wonder… What do you think?

 Image source



Today’s 4 Minute Writer  

The Tracks

She had been walking along the tracks for days. It was the only way she could maintain any sense of direction. She had no idea where they led, but there was nothing else to point her to any place other than here.

The noonday sun beat down. She reached into her bag and took out a shirt to shield her eyes. She could only see a few feet in front of her. Then again, there wasn’t much else to look at.

Track, track, more track. Her eyes grew heavy. Just a little farther and she would take a break.

In the midst of the brightness and her fading energy, she suddenly felt a different sensation beneath her feet. She stopped and looked down. Shoes. Sand. Tracks- no tracks, they had come to an end. She had arrived somewhere.

She looked around. Her surroundings were the same they had been the whole journey- sand, sand, more sand. One vast expanse.

Now what? No path, no tracks, no landmarks, or sign posts.

No time to waste on tears or analysis. She stepped into the vast, choosing a direction at random and carried on, one foot in front of the other.

If only she would have looked beyond the surface, she would have noticed the gilded steps within reach above, leading to life in another dimension.

Image source

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Filed under Creativity, Writing

18 responses to “I Wanna be a Rock Star

  1. Zoe…
    Two very interesting pieces, here.
    First, about taking on a new persona: This is what successful writers must do as often as they can. It is difficult at first, but it become easier after awhile, and it is so important for forming your characters, for understanding them, and in the long-run it gives you the grounds to understand other people in your life as well.
    I think you’ve also discovered a truth about being “out there”. That is, it is always easier to take broad steps, to do outragious things, when you are wearing a mask. In your case the mask was not physical, but it was real nonetheless. You masked yourself in another’s persona, and you did it successfully. In my opinion, that was very, very good.

    Secondly, about the tracks. Wonderful piece. Evocative and compelling. You’ve left me wondering about how it began, and how it will end. Nicely done.

    • Thanks for your insights.
      I’ll probably keep experimenting with different personas- this was a lot of fun. It’s something we all do each day in some form or other- at a formal function we put on our formal persona, when conducting business we put on our business persona. Extending this out to different types of people or characteristics is the next step. How interesting life can be!

  2. According to Brian Tracy “Charm = the ability to create extra-ordinary rapport with someone and make him or her feel truly exceptional in your presence. ” In his book The Power of Charm, he says while some people come by it naturally, charm (charisma) is something you can learn. I agree with him.

    • I wonder if some people can pull off what they learn more easily than others. I think that sometimes I don’t want to be charming/charismatic- I don’t mind ruffling some feathers when I get my point across. Then again, perhaps it is more useful to learn to get points across in a way that still ‘charms’ people; it may make them more receptive to my ideas…

  3. I expect that I would find that your inner charisma and charm exceeds that of Barack Obama.

    I can only listen to him in VERY small doses ~ whereas I hang on your every word. 🙂

    • I’m blushing- do stop! Or just keep laying on the compliments, maybe I don’t mind so much after all 🙂
      Perhaps some people are more easily ‘charmed’ than others by mannerisms, facial expressions, and tone…

  4. Charisma may be partly innate, partly developed through experiences growing up, and partly learned purposefully. You have charisma, Zoe. It doesn’t surprise me that you think you don’t. It is that way with lots of charismatic people. They are often shy yet courageous enough to expose themselves and to reach out to others. Go girl! You’ve got it.

    The Tracks… I like it. It captured my imagination. I was on the tracks with that woman, thinking, what are we doing here? Then when the tracks disappeared… Bummer. Just like life to kick you in the pants. The last line reached all the way back to the beginning and made me think again what it was all about. Blessings to you…

    • The Tracks- I wonder what she would encounter in that other dimension where the stairs led. I often feel like life is lived on so many different levels and that we can learn to move between them, seeing our circumstances and surroundings through vastly different lenses.
      Thanks for your comment.

  5. V

    I think authentic charisma is something you are born with as one might define charisma as being able to influence without the use of logic.

    Then I suppose one could learn it …. but how? and how authentic would it be? could someone no born with it REALLY pull it off? And then I wonder why one would WANT to learn how to be charismatic? I mean is that a necessary quality in leaders? (ie. Obama)

    • Good questions. Maybe the book Helene talks about could shed some light on how to be more charismatic. As for why one would want to be more charismatic- I think having charisma draws people to follow your lead. And if you have some place you want to take them, charisma would be a helpful tool to throw in the mix. If a leader does not have charisma, they would need other charicteristics to compensate for this lack.
      All kinds of people use charisma to lead people to all kinds of ill fates, though, so when we see someone charismatic, we have to watch out to not get sucked in by the charm.

  6. V

    I also liked “The Tracks”.. in one sense it seems like an adventure…to follow something not knowing where it will lead you. And then I thought about it… the REAL adventure begins when the tracks disappear on us, and then we are no longer just passively following but now we are leading ….. ourselves.

    I heard in a sermon once that we are all LEADERS. Even if it is only ourselves we are leading. I like that.

  7. Obama is extremely compelling and, yes, he has charisma because of his height, his looks, his voice, but mainly because he is very confident and comfortable in his own skin. I think confidence without arrogance is the key – and one can learn to be confident.

    • Good point about confidence being the key. People want to follow someone who is confident about where they are going.
      Learning to be confident- I agree with you in theory about this being something one can learn. I think it’s easier said than done… Maybe easier for some than others.

  8. lazydayzz

    Lovely piece. Known tracks define our life. But sometimes we reach a point in our lives when we get lost and confused, trying to figure the reason for our existence.

  9. When I see young patients who worry they don’t know what they want to be when they grow up, I always say, “Well, I wanted to be a rock star, but it didn’t work out.”

    The image of old gray-haired Doc as a rock star is so ridiculous that it puts them at ease, and then we can always talk about it.

    Dr. B

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