The one thing every beginning student should expect


When you first start learning a musical instrument, you are full of excitement and optimism. Your life will be so wonderful when you can finally play, you just know it.

At some point, however, this optimism will disappear. I can guarantee it.

You will tell yourself “I know I should be practicing, but there are so many other things that need to get done.” You may feel guilty, and embarrassed to tell your teacher about this. Perhaps it reminds you of being in school and not being quite prepared enough for a test, or not spending enough time on your homework.

I have never had a student who didn’t reach this point, and I have been there myself many times. You should be expect it from the beginning. It is part of the learning process.

You might feel like taking a break. You will just wait until things calm down a bit and then get back into it, when you will really be able to give it your all.

This is a trap. Do not do this.

Instead, view this as an opportunity to try something new. You are discouraged and bored. Is it possible that the “old way” is what has gotten you there?

If practicing is not exciting, please consider the possibility that something in your practice routine could be adjusted. Maybe trying harder to do what you know you are “supposed” to be doing isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be. Could you maybe find a new way?

If I am your teacher, my job is to help you figure this out. Tell me that you are not excited about this, that you feel like you are in a rut.

Believe me, I expect this to happen.

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