|I was thinking today about THE most dangerous enemy of musical progress…the
victim mentality. What do I mean by this?
Often we can let our personal circumstances dictate our progress. For example, someone may let their guitar practice slide because they were really busy at work. This person may start making excuses such as "I didn't have time". This is victim mentality. It is believing that your musical progress is only possible when external circumstances allow it.
What they are really saying to themselves is that their musical dreams and goals are
not as important as paying a few lousy bills.They are letting their boss's goals get in the way of their own.
Now…I can't point fingers at anyone. I've been guilty of having a victim mentality
plenty of times! Especially when it comes to things like going to the gym :)But I don't have a victim mentality when it comes to guitar practice. There is virtually nothing that I will allow to get in the way of my musical progress.
So…how can you stop yourself from becoming a victim and a loser…
1.Stop making excuses. I can guarantee that for every excuse you can make there is someone out there who has overcome that obstacle. Don't allow yourself to make
excuses. They are the death of your musical dreams.
2. Watch your language. For example, rather than saying "I couldn't find the time" say "I am acting like a complete and absolute loser and if I continue acting like this I will NEVER achieve my musical goals". Because that statement is pretty painful to say, you'll soon stop making excuses!
3. Think of solutions. For excuses that you normally make, think of ways of overcoming those obstacles. For example, if you are constantly using your work as a reason why you can't practice, ask yourself questions like…
"How can I get paid more but work less hours?".
"How can I get paid while I sleep?".
"How can I stay home all day and practice?".
If you ask enough questions like this on a daily basis, you'll find a solution
4. Think of your "Why". These are the reasons why you want to achieve your musical goals. If your why is strong enough, You will NEVER want to stop practicing for any reason.
5. Think of your role models. Use your role models to motivate and inspire you to
keep on practicing.Every time you start to make an excuse, ask yourself "Would__________make this excuse?" For example, one of my favourite guitarists is Steve Vai. I could NEVER imagine making him excuses for not practicing!
To finish off here's a quote that you may want to memorize...
"You can either become a great guitarist, or you can make excuses, but you can't do both".
About the author:
Copyright 2005 by Craig Bassett. All Rights Reserved.
Craig Bassett is a professional guitarist, guitar tutor and author living in Auckland, New Zealand.
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