I read an interesting email the other day.
The author was talking about how he was walking around a shopping complex and was thinking about how everyone in the place looked kind of sad.
…Like there was some deep underlying pain in their eyes.
Well, I’ve thought like this too.
In the past, I walked around and felt sorry for total strangers for no reason at all.
It made me feel a little like a buffoon – I mean, who am I to feel sorry for someone?
Am I that much better than them?
Of course not.
I think that I was probably feeling pretty sad that day myself, hence why I was maybe seeing sadness around me.
Now I know this might seem off-topic, but the thing is, some people tell me this is one of the key reasons they start to play guitar.
…To get away from sadness in their life.
On the flip side though, some people play guitar to move towards more happiness.
Of course, there are goal-oriented reasons people play guitar, but on a deeper level I’ve read multiple times that moving away from sadness or towards happiness is pretty much what drives most of our actions as human beings.
…Especially when most guitarists who join this email list, tell me how frustrating the guitar is, and that it causes more sadness, frustration, and pain than it should.
It shouldn’t be this way.
Just like anything in life, getting good at guitar takes time, effort, and patience.
It also requires the ability to really connect with the instrument.
…But the world of guitar playing can be a minefield.
There are explosions going off everywhere.
Guitarists’ joy for playing is getting metaphorically blown to smithereens any given second.
And the enemy of guitar playing is raining down grenades and missiles at beginner guitarists at will.
Yes, I know I’m painting a not-so-pretty picture, but that’s the way it is.
So what’s the solution?
Simplicity, focus, momentum, repetition of what works, patience, avoiding moving on to new things too soon, learning more simple riffs and melodies rather than only chord-based songs, getting your core technique sorted ASAP, and more.
All of those things will really help.
Do them and they will:
#1 – Help you move away from pain in your guitar playing (including the physical pain of playing with sore fingers and the emotional pain of being utterly frustrated by the guitar).
#2 – Move towards pleasure with your playing (where you can pick up the guitar with butterflies in your stomach, impress yourself when you play and get a shot of confidence as your loved ones say nice things about your playing and progress).
These things can happen for you on the guitar, but also in life.
I mean, playing guitar can be a HUGE part of our lives (or you may want it to be).
And that goes even if you practise sporadically.
Anyway, keep the above in mind and do what it takes to get moving away from pain and towards pleasure.
Those are the keys to success.
I hope you found those thoughts useful.
For more help on your journey, you might want to check this out:
Good luck, but remember, we make our own luck!
P.S. This post was originally taken from Dan Thorpe’s private email list. To get blog posts like this sent to you which are full of great tips to make fingerpicking, strumming, and learning guitar more enjoyable (especially if you are over 40) join Dan’s list. It’s 100% free, HERE.