What My Favourite Superstar Taught Me
About 5 minutes to read
If I told you that millions could adore you and you would earn millions of dollars if you would simply be yourself, would you believe me? In fact, I would even go one-step further to say you could achieve fame and fortune even if you were fat, spoke funny and were born on the wrong side of the tracks. You are probably thinking right now that I am crazy and that in our society we do not achieve fame and fortune for being ourselves, but this is where you are wrong.
It was 11 May 2016 and I left home in the early afternoon to drive 270km to Hamburg to a pop concert. We had purchased the tickets five months in advance and were excited to be finally underway. We considered ourselves most fortunate to have tickets and were even prepared to travel to other European cities to see this artist in concert.
Promptly at 8pm the auditorium became dark, the closed eyes on the screen opened and an echoing “Hellooooo” resonated through the hall. We the excited audience yelled back HELLO. The eyes opened and closed again followed by another echoing “Hellooooo.” The audience went crazy when the spot light fell on the small diamond shape stage in the middle of the auditorium and up she came singing
Hello, it’s me
I was wondering if after all these years you’d like to meet
During the song, she made her way through the crowds to the main stage and belted out three quick songs in succession without engaging with the audience. However, the audience exploded during Hometown Glory when the most amazing aerial visuals of Hamburg appeared on the screen. Finishing the song she yelled “Hello Hamburg, how the fuck are you?”
Adele was in the house!
Let me be honest I am a fan and have been since her first album. I love her music and found myself saying in between the release of Skyfall and her last album, “Where is she? I wish she would give us more music.” I had a few impressions of what she might be like as a performer and can’t assume to know what she might be like as a person but after seeing her live in concert I was really challenged once again just to be myself and pursue those things I love doing.
Within moments of Adele engaging with her fans, she had each of the 20000 strong crowd eating from the palm of her hand. If she commanded us to strip naked and does the Macarena, I am sure we would have all complied.
Apart from being uplifted and transported by that incredible voice of hers it was her absolute authenticity struck me the most. Three things about her struck me deeply and challenged me once again about my own life.
Be yourself, always
I am not claiming to know Adele but what struck me deeply is that she is a hundred percent herself. Apart from that incredible voice of hers, I think what draws fans to her, is her unashamed willingness to be who she is.
In terms of entertaining her fans, she doesn’t try to imitate Beyoncé or Lady Gaga with all the theatrics and show elements, she is simply Adele. She plays to her strengths, which is her authenticity and voice.
She is outspoken, swears like a trooper, acts like a goof ball and is unaffected by that thing called fame. I wondered how Adele could be so unabashedly authentic when I realised she is
Not scared to show vulnerability
We all know she makes a living singing about her heartbreaks and recoveries. Each of us can listen to her music and identify with a heartache and recovery; however, she does not seem scared to show her vulnerability.
The thing is in our society we are not encouraged to show our vulnerability and if we do, it is often used against us. We create walls and impenetrable barriers that keep us from being injured or allowing others in, but is this a “normal” way of being? Vulnerability researcher and expert Brené Brown suggests that if we were capable of expressing our vulnerability, we would be happier individuals and societies.
When we look at a superstar like Adele she seems to let it all hang out, She has shown us that she was broken, but she got up again. She openly admits to being a drama queen and perhaps over exaggerating her heartbreaks but this is what adds to her charm. She shows that it is possible to be broken, recover, and continue to have a fruitful life because I think she
Doesn’t take life too seriously
I think that sometimes we make things in our lives more complicated than they need to be and take things to seriously. After all, we are all going to die. We know they end of the story, not when or how it will be, but this is The End nevertheless. Considering that we know this crucial detail I wonder what would happen if we simply allow ourselves to be whom we are, have fun and not take things too seriously. You know we could say that it is easier to laugh things off when we are rich or famous but the truth is everyone has their problems that are relevant to their life. We cannot compare the problems in our lives and say mine is more important or traumatic than yours or yours are less important than mine are. As long as we are caught up in the story of our lives, our narrative is important to us, so what would happen if we allowed ourselves to relax into this thing called life, make the most out of it, and enjoy it until the curtain falls?
I don’t make a habit of idolising others or placing them on pedestals because I know we are all made of dust and to dust we shall return, but I do love it when someone I admire challenges me by their example to make the most out of my life.
I left this concert with a stronger conviction to be myself, allow myself to show vulnerability and not to take things to seriously. I hope that I will be able to remember these aspirations and live by these principles. I am sure I will forget and fall down in a million ways, but I hope to get up stronger than before and keep on living my best life each day. What about you? Will you join me?