Tuning Out the “Songs of Our People”

Photograph of a husky-like dog in howling pose whilst sat upon the snow with a sunrise sky beyond.

Today’s article was written by Change Coach Karli Naglick


I have recently enjoyed exploring the channels of some uniquely creative YouTubers. I particularly love one channel that features three Siberian Huskies named Tikanni, Kita, and Tehya. These dogs have the most amazing “husky howls.” Kita is described as having the “classic awoo,” Tehya sounds like the siren of an ambulance, and Tikanni… well, Tikanni actually screams. It is a very human-sounding scream! The mom of these three cool dogs is incredibly talented at video editing and includes her dogs’ “thoughts” in the videos.


While they are howling away, the huskies are “singing the songs of their people,” i.e., all of their husky ancestors who have lived before them. This really piqued my curiosity: singing the songs of their people. It made me wonder if we are also sometimes caught up in singing the habitual songs of our people – the troublesome habitual songs that do not create feelings of well-being as opposed to the fun husky songs.


I identify with Tehya, “the siren.” I have experienced a lot of habitual worries, especially motherly worries. If I am worried about my son Jack, the siren in my head gets going: “Is Jack safe? Is Jack healthy? Is Jack taking good care of himself? How is Jack’s mental well-being? Jack has a cold. Is it COVID?” Of course, I am not the only mother to worry about her child. What if my worries are just the long-engrained “songs of my people (mothers)”? What if I don’t need to take them so seriously?


By contrast, Jack identifies with Tikanni, “the screamer.” Jack is a classical pianist, and he has a lot of habitual stress about practicing. The Tikanni in Jack’s head can really get going: “You need to practice more! You need to figure out how to practice correctly! Stay present in the moment so you can be creative! If you don’t practice well, you won’t perform well!” I’m sure you agree that it would be pretty hard to practice a musical instrument with screaming in your head. But like me, is Jack just hearing the habitual “songs of his people (musicians)”? Musicians throughout the centuries have struggled with insecure thinking around their practice habits. What if Jack does not need to take his thinking so seriously?


If you check out their channel, you will see that Tikanni, Tehya, and Kita are much-loved dogs who have fun creating chaos with their singing. I don’t think that they hold tightly to their songs and develop bad feelings because of them. They happily create “husky chaos” and then move on to napping on the couch or bouncing on the trampoline and digging crater-sized holes in the family’s backyard. One other thing I love about Tehya is that she is often sitting quite comfortably while wailing away as “the siren.” Similarly, when I have a busy mind that is worrying about Jack, nothing bad is happening to either one of us.


What songs are you singing? Are your songs telling you that you are depressed and that you don’t have value? Are your songs telling you that you are insecure and not good enough compared to other people? Are your songs telling you that there is something inherently wrong with you, which is why you cannot engage in your life? Or are your songs filled with ideas about how you have to “be better” somehow? What if these are all nothing more than “songs of our people”? Songs that countless others have sung before us, that have been passed down through many generations, and that do not mean anything at all about us or our lives. What if we can find some space around our habitual thinking that will allow us to find more peace and joy? What if we can come to see that life has so much more to offer us than what our habitual thinking would have us believe? I think this is absolutely possible, because it has happened for me!


When I am not so caught up in worrying about Jack, I am free to engage in a relationship with him that is filled with connection, humor, and love. I am also more present and able to offer support when he asks for it. When Jack is not caught up in the stress of practicing, he is free to be creative and to feel curious about exploring new ideas about both his musicality and physical technique. So much opens up when we do not pay attention to our old, stale sirens and screams.


I would love to explore and get curious about any habitual thinking that you would like to see differently. I think that the holiday season is full of “the songs of our people.” There is a lot of habitual thinking around maintaining traditions, creating a “perfect” type of experience for our kids, and “having fun.” Please get in touch if you would like to find more peace and ease during the holiday season and into 2024. The New Year! There are lots of “songs” there as well. Have any of you ever heard the delightful, “New Year, New You” song? That’s a Top-40 hit for sure!


You can learn more about Karli here: www.karlinaglick.com



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