Why were there tears in your eyes when you first saw and heard Susan Boyle sing? (Don’t be ashamed to admit it. We all had tears.)

One reason is that there’s a part of all of us that roots for the underdog – and Susan certainly was the underdog. Fat, unattractive, frumpy, middle aged, unemployed – a target for ridicule.

Then she opened her mouth and all of our biases were turned on their heads. We started cheering for the underdog who was fulfilling her dream.

For some people, though, there was something else going on. Some people watched Susan and reflected on their lives and realized that they hadn’t achieved their dream. Some realized that they were afraid to go for their dream. They heard all of the people cheering for Susan and they knew that people had never cheered for them like that.

Then these people dug a little deeper and acknowledged that they hadn’t achieved their dream because they’ve been afraid. They’ve set up imaginary barriers that have held them back.

For many years I worked as a Paramedic in a major New Jersey city. I treated thousands of patients and dealt with death every day. Death didn’t bother me at all. I knew it was simply a part of the cycle.

What did bother me was what I heard from so many people in their last moments. So often they were begging for more time. They told me what they hadn’t done yet in their lives. They told me what they had been afraid to do. And now their time was up.

If you’ve ever been on one of my coaching calls, you know that I’m very supportive, but I have no tolerance for excuses. Excuses are the barriers you’ve put up, blocking the way to your dreams. I won’t have any of it.

Watch Susan’s video again. There are so many powerful moments.

Notice how confidently she walks on the stage. Listen to the ridicule, cat calls and laughter from the audience before she started to sing. She smiles through it all. She knows what coming next.

Look at her smile during the eleven second introduction to her song. She knew what was coming. She was the ONLY person in that entire theatre who knew what was coming.

Look at Simon’s eyebrows jump up as he hears her first notes.

Feel the impact of knowing that the moment she opened her mouth and started to sing, her life changed forever. She became famous around the world.

Then imagine how she felt as she ended her song and heard the audience go wild for her.

And notice how she blew a kiss to the audience as she walked off. As one person posted on this blog, she knew she slayed the dragon.

So many times people tell me they couldn’t possibly do an interview on a radio talk show. They tell me they can’t possibly write a powerful press release. They tell me all the things they can’t do.

At that point I can pretty accurately describe their lives – and it’s not a happy story.

I have the life I’ve dreamt about because I ignore fear. Fear may be there. I just don’t acknowledge it.

I want you to have the life you dream of. I’ll do whatever I can to help you. But in the end, it’s up to you.

You can live in fear and give up. Or you can ignore the fear and have an incredible life.

Here are some of the lyrics of the song Susan sang. Read them carefully and see how they apply to your life. Do you have tigers that come in the night and tear apart your dreams? Why do you allow them to tear apart your dreams?

Susan couldn’t have picked a better song.

I dreamed a dream in time gone by
When hope was high
And life worth living
I dreamed that love would never die
I dreamed that God would be forgiving
Then I was young and unafraid
And dreams were made and used and wasted
There was no ransom to be paid
No song unsung, no wine untasted

But the tigers come at night
With their voices soft as thunder
As they tear your hope apart
And they turn your dream to shame

And still I dream he’ll come to me
That we will live the years together
But there are dreams that cannot be
And there are storms we cannot weather

I had a dream my life would be
So different from this hell I’m living
So different now from what it seemed
Now life has killed the dream I dreamed.

Be Sociable, Share!
  1. Chris Grant Says:


  2. Andy Moose Says:

    I love how she already knew she was going to sing as well or better than the original (Elaine Paige).

    And, she Did.

    The parallel to us, as seekers of free publicity – we know it will work, we (myself included) just have to get up and Do it.

  3. Penny G Says:

    Fear and procrastination are two biggies to overcome to get to success. Of course, there are so many other issues as well but, I absolutely agree with you… Susan Boyle knew what she had and showed her confidence on stage. She was a wreck afterwards, but that didn’t count for the real show.

    I recently rode on the Silverton Train in Durango, CO. It rocks back and forth and runs on a cliff where you think you will fall off. At first I was scared to death, really thought I was going to fall of the cliff in the train, (even though it has been running this route for 130 years). Finally, I enjoyed the lesson that if you let go of your “thoughts” of fear and enjoy the ride… you will!

  4. Clive Sheldon Says:

    Paul I was amazed to learn you had picked up the Susan Boyle story. On what Prog did you see her? I thought your article the tops! You sure have a way with words. Wish I could afford you write my PR`s. But you are a D..n good teacher. I`m proud to be one of your `happy campers` Regs Clive

  5. Signe A. Dayhoff, Ph.D. Says:

    Thanks so much for pointing out how Susan Boyle and her poignant choice of song are so emblematic of not only her life but that of so many others. And perhaps what’s worse than not achieving one’s dream is not quite knowing what one’s dream is.

    Those in that situation have a gnawing sensation of there being something within them crying out for expression, for creating something to make them more fulfilled. But they don’t know how to identify it. For some others, if they could identify it, they might not dare let it out for fear of a disappointing result. So sad.

    For those who have not as yet achieved their dream I can only hope that Susan Boyle becomes a role model for throwing their shoulders back, taking a deep breath, and plunging ahead -“Watch out world. Ready or not, here I come!”

    (P.S. If this post is a duplicate, I apologize. My cable went out just as I was submitting it earliers.)

  6. Stefan Johne Says:

    Paul – as being an Internet Marketer myself that has gone trough rough years your the only one left in the list of guys I subscribed per mail. Your great and have an eagle sight please never stop mailing me when you have posted something new!

    And hell yeah there are so many people with excuses… it’s hard to don’t have some even if I know about the problem I can’t work around all of mine 🙂 I wish Susan all the luck she wants, she deserve it.

  7. Robert Schwarztrauber Says:

    Imagine the kind of world it could be if everyone would share the special talent they hold secret. Cast off the fear of success, the fear of failure, DECIDE to fling open the gates and let free the dreams and passions held within.(Just as Susan did!) I believe this video you shared Paul, will be a wake up call. Inspiration and permission for everyone to dust off their dreams and get busy making them come true. To announce to the world (through your publicity systems!) that they have a special, secret gift to share. If you won’t do it for yourself, please do it for us. Please don’t deny us a better life by withholding your gifts. What a shame for all if your dreams should wither on the vine. Surprise us…please, please surprise someone today! YOU have a gift to share.

  8. Keith Hall Says:


    Excellent post! Though you mention that you ignore the fear and do your action dream. For me, I prefer to see the fear and use the energy in the fear to really take action toward my goal. I can always use a little extra energy boost and fear can be the provider.

    What is fear? I see it as not knowing the answer to the situation in front of me ( will they like me? will I get eaten? will I get injured? will they laugh at me? these are all negative energy fears, Fear is often associated with negative energy. Positive unknowns like how well am I going to wow them? what will be my level of success? ) Use the energy in fear to take action, hopefully a correct action.

    Thanks Paul

  9. Bob Crawshaw Says:

    Hi Paul

    I agree with your wise commentary. Who dares wins but to firstly win you must dare. http://mainestreet1.blogspot.com/2009/04/communications-lessons-from-susan-boyle.html

  10. Dale Curtis Says:


    I was one of the three people on the planet who had not seen or heard Susan’s performance. I can’t get enough of it.
    She is confident not cocky, polished not packaged, relevant not regressive – tremendously spiritual.
    Thanks for providing your poignant commentary.

  11. Priscilla Bogema Says:

    Susan Boyle has a real voice. I believe most young people are use to someone yelling at them…swearing,vulgarity or exchanging duragatory remarks or even implying they can control your emotions. She’s a real person with real talent. Not made by Hollywood like so many wannabee,entertainers around the world. It would be nice if more people would come forward & beable to sing like that,knowing they are not going to be judged by their looks or what they have on their back.

  12. body detox diet Says:

    Susan Boyle was my bet on Britain Got Talent. She has a very beautiful voice. Unfortunately, she got dropped.

Leave a Reply