When I got accepted to Belmont, I was SO excited to get started playing guitar and serve people with a passion I had been cultivating since I was a kid. After only a few months though, I developed a little intimidation and put off really “getting out there” because it scared me so much. I have always heard the things we love deeply and hold close to us are the hardest to be risky with.
After school, I temporarily lost sight of my music dreams and felt that little nagging feeling of God pulling me back toward using music as a way to bring joy to others and encouragement. I know some of you are there with me thinking about your love for music and what you can do with it so I wanted to break down 5 lies that are easy to tell yourself that can kill your passion for playing:
1) It's Too Late for You
For some reason, I have spoken to a lot of people who used to love playing guitar and gave it up because they believed their chance had passed them by. When I was younger my dad used to say I should play music over sports because you can keep playing for as long as your mind and most of your fingers work. He just turned 60 last year and I have yet to see another guitarist shred and engage the crowd like he does!
2) You Aren't Naturally Talented at Guitar
I deeply believe 95% of playing guitar is hard work and practice. You can't compare yourself to anyone because you don't know how much time they set aside to practice or how they might practice differently. Music is so individual and communicates to everyone differently so you really can't compare yourself to others. So be ok with being where you are and if you find something that's too hard for you, be thankful because that's what will stretch you to be better!-
3) It's Too Competitive
This is especially easy to say in Nashville (guitar players are a dime a dozen!). I always try to think though that a) You don't have to be the best to add value (credit to Christy Wright on this one) B) it's more about having fun and connecting with people than being the best and beating the competition, and C) music would be way more boring if only the same best guitarists played on everything. Never forget that you have something unique to bring to the table!
4) You Don't Have Time
TBH practicing can be really hard for me when I have a lot going on. It's helped me put my amp in the living room where I am bound to see it and start playing and inviting musical friends over to play- playing with people always gives it a purpose!
5) You Have Decided You Don't Want to be a Professional Musician
You don't have to do music full time for playing guitar to bring joy into your life. Some people quit playing completely if they aren't able to survive on music alone, but It can be amazing to use your guitar playing as a way to serve family and friends, express some creativity and make a little side money while doing it!
So go make the EP you’ve always wanted to create, get a band together or learn how to play! It’s easy to feel like you are “not good enough” at your talent, but the truth is there is no such thing as good enough and there is plenty of room left for you to affect someone’s life with the music you write or play.
If any of these lies have left you feeling burnt out or are scaring you from getting back into music, I encourage you just to start somewhere! I would love to hear how you've gotten back into music/ gotten past your any guitar fears that were holding you back!