Sometimes it’s easy
I have been playing guitar for many years. Just like you, I have periods where playing the guitar is easy and periods when it is not.
Sometimes, I just pick it up and play and I really enjoy it. And I have periods where it seems like everything is contrived (job, kids, family) to ensure that I just don’t have the chance.
Sometimes it’s not
I advocate to my students to play 15 minutes a day. It doesn’t matter if you play more. But it really matters that you play your 15 minutes as a minimum. Why do I advocate this as a minimum?
Because the nature of habits is that we have to spend a certain amount of time to embed them. Experts say that it is between 21 days and 45 days to develop a habit. And once you get into the habit of playing your guitar, then you’re going to see a big difference.
If you get 1% better at something each day, then you will be 37 times better at it by the end of the year. These are the kind of returns that we are looking for. And getting 1% better isn’t that hard when we are a beginner or intermediate student.
How to make it happen?
Here’s a few tips to making your 15 minutes a reality
- Place your guitar in a place where you see it every day
- Make picking up the guitar the easiest possible? Is it in a case under the bed? Try a guitar stand so you can just pick it right up
- Find a routine to slip guitar playing into. An example might be “come home from work, change clothes, play guitar”. In this way, you’ll find that if you do the earlier habits, you’ll do the later one (play guitar)
- If you can’t do 15 minutes a day, then playing 5 minutes every day is still a big success.
- Give yourself a reward if you hit a number of consecutive days (my recommendation is 21 consecutive days). In this way, you’ll want the prize and it will keep you going.
Let me know how you’re doing in the comments below. Think about being 37 times better in one year’s time!