How To Avoid Distractions And Stay On Course With Your Guitar Playing
Do you find yourself jumping all over the internet trying to find solutions to your guitar playing problems?
Or maybe you just search out new things to play all the time because you feel like it will make you sound awesome instantly?
How about jumping from song to song without ever learning to play any one song all the way through?
Most everyone has gone through this. I believe this article is very important and will help you because, becoming distracted it is such a major problem for most everyone. First let’s define exactly what getting distracted look like.
First watch this video of a very cute, but not disciplined dog in a dog competition.
Pretty silly and who doesn’t like to see a dog having fun. What about the first 2 dogs. Really impressive. At first I didn’t notice the course was full of tasty treats. I just thought the dogs were running to their master. After seeing the golden retriever munch on every single plate of food I became very impressed with the discipline installed in the first two dogs.
Getting to feast on a buffet of free food seems great in the moment, but it doesn’t compare to the reward of reaching the goal very fast, feeling strong, self-controlled, and getting love and praise from their master. I’m not really sure how much dogs feel all that, but as you know as humans we feel all kinds of emotions about many things.
Don’t Be The Distracted Guitar Player
Did you see how fast those dogs reached the goal when they didn’t stop. The second dog did it in 3 seconds. The distracted dog did it in 54 seconds and had to be pulled to the end. That is 18 times longer! He probably wouldn’t have even finished the race if it was up to him.
This is why some guitar players reach a goal in 1 year vs. 18 years or more. In many cases it is because they go it alone and do not have someone to guide them to get results.
There are many distractions and I want you to be aware of them and be prepared to resist them.
Distraction #1: The Internet
This is the biggest distraction in the world today. People on their phones while at dinner with their families is the common example. The instant gratification of the internet is the bait, but the problem starts in our minds.
For guitar players it starts with doubting what we are doing, we think there is some special trick, or we just want to be entertained all the time.
The more sources you are trying to learn from the harder it will be to become great at guitar. Seems counterintuitive, but it is true. Imagine if those dogs had multiple owners all calling them from different directions. Where does he go? There is no clarity on where the goal is what what action needs to be taken. There is only confusion. Having one teacher and confidence that you are moving forward towards your goals is that fastest way to reach your goals. Anything else will slow you down.
Distraction #2: Activities
We live in a busy world with so much to do, it is overwhelming at times. It is awesome because there is never a dull moment, but if you find you can’t say no to all the fun things your friends invite you to do or you feel like you’re missing something by not participating in the myriad of activities available then you will burn out.
The majority of these activities are passing. Once they are done, they are just distant memories. Invest into your future with guitar. I say invest because it brings a great return on the investment. You will be able to reap enjoyment for the rest of your life.
There are specific times when you need to be extra aware of these distractions. First is during the holiday season. Thanksgiving through Christmas and New Years is very busy for most people. I am all about being thankful, spending time with loved ones, and celebrating, but lets be honest, most of it is a distraction and not focused on the real meanings of the holidays.
Second is summertime. After the months of less than ideal weather, it is easy for everyone to go nuts with travel, sports, and many other outdoor activities. I love getting out in nature and being active, but none of these has the lasting benefit that music provides. Check out this video for more info on that.
I hope this has encouraged you to stay on course. Remember your decision to stay the course when everything else is pulling at you is the thing that will set you apart from everyone else.
Taking guitar lessons is the best way to add accountability, consistency in learning, playing, and reaching musical goals. After working with over 1000 people I have found those who stayed through the busy times even if practice wasn’t perfect made substantially more progress than those who stopped and restarted.
Most people don’t keep up well through summer and when returning, if they were disciplined enough to return, it took a whole month or more just to get back to where they were before summer. Time is adding up. It’s almost like 6 months on and 6 months off. I have yet to see this approach bring good results.
In contrast, I have seen many many people who like the first 2 dogs, stay the course and do more than they even realized they would ever do. That is something worth going after.