Welcome to a new Monday post with 3 random thoughts on all things guitar, music, and life, including the power of positivity, detectives, and more…
#1 – How to be a guitar playing detective
I often talk about being like Sherlock Holmes and becoming a guitar playing detective.
This is so you can spot anything wrong with your playing and quickly get to work fixing it.
There are two obvious ways to do this…
1- Get an experienced teacher who can spot things for you in real time and learn from them.
2 – Get a video camera and watch yourself playing.
I help students with #1, but even then, I like to encourage them to do #2 so they can learn to fix things themselves.
It’s better for their long-term development if they can spot errors in their playing.
Once I spot an issue with a student, I explain to them what it is and I show them on my guitar so they can see what was happening.
This helps to build up their experience of fixing things themselves.
Whether you have a teacher or not, if you don’t already do it, try recording your playing every now and then, and start “playing detective” on guitar.
It’s well worth it.
Okay, next one.
#2 – The power of positivity
Dan Thorpe Acoustic Academy member, Nancy, left a comment the other day to say:
“I just wanted to express how helpful the method is. It keeps me grounded and gives structure to the massive amount of stuff you need to learn and practice moving forward. Another great lesson and great teaching. I am having a blast learning from you. Thank you!!!”
I just wanted to say a massive congrats to Nancy, she has taken the Academy by storm since she joined and won the “Leaderboard” for the month of April.
(The Leaderboard is a fun way of rewarding members who get points for more interaction and involvement with the lessons, with the winner each month getting a prize delivered to them).
I didn’t just want to share this just to congratulate Nancy though, but to show you just how powerful having a positive, excited attitude can be.
Isn’t it interesting how the guitarists who have the most positive attitude are the ones who usually have the most success?
There is a lot to guitar playing, but an underrated aspect is having this positive attitude.
Students like Nancy are a testament to what you can achieve with the power of positivity and the desire to put what you learn into practice.
I hope you have and keep developing this skill too because it’s such a key skill.
#3 – The sport I was most awful at
The world championship of snooker has been on these past few weeks (the final is on in the background as I write this email).
It got me thinking of when I used to play snooker as a teenager.
Despite being a good athlete and good at most sports, I was very average at snooker.
It’s a hard game with the table so huge you need binoculars to see the other end of the table!
Top professionals score 147 breaks, but I only ever managed about 17!
Hilarious really, and it used to bug me that I was good at other sports, but not snooker.
I realised that I was only playing occasionally and for fun, so it made no sense for me to compare myself to guys who played way more than me.
I see this with guitar too.
People who have played for 50-100 hours in total comparing themselves to…
Friends or guitar heroes who have played for many decades.
Making comparisons to professionals or those who are way more experienced is a dangerous game.
Your journey is unique.
You don’t have to try to reach the dizzy heights of your heroes to have fun.
Just stop comparing if you do it.
You will enjoy your journey more that way.
There you go.
Enjoy your Monday!
P.S. To get more help and specific advice so you enjoy your journey more, you may want to check this out.
P.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.