26 November 2008

What Is Your Guitar Playing Strength?

So often as guitarists we focus on what we are not good at. We're never satisfied, always seeking to improve this or that in our playing. Today, it's time to reverse this trend and start congratulating ourselves for what we're great at.

Guitar Player Zen recently told the story of 3 Myths That Are Holding Your Guitar Progress Back.

Guitar Player Zen writes about the book "Go Put Your Strengths to Work: 6 Powerful Steps to Achieve Outstanding Success" by Marcus Buckingham.

"The key idea of this book is to harness your strengths and make them stronger, and not to focus on getting better at where you are weak. The result of focusing on your strengths is innovation, higher creativity, and passion. While it is still necessary to work on areas of weakness, you will see more impactful improvement by focusing on your strengths."
The post goes on to explain three "myths" the book claims often hold people back from reaching their potential. I want to take a closer look at myth number two:
Myth # 2 You will grow the most in your areas of greatest weakness.
Truth: You Will Grow the most in your areas of Strength.
Guitar Player Zen relates this to learning guitar.
"If you do not eliminate this myth, your development and uniqueness as a guitar player will suffer, and you may not realize your own unique guitar identity. By constantly comparing areas where you are not as good as other guitarists and trying to catch up, you only become more like them, rather than spending the majority of your time building upon your own style.

You also will be most inquisitive, most resilient, most creative, and most open to learning in your areas of strength."
After reading that I got to thinking about my own playing. Now I usually consider my playing a pretty mediocre affair. But looking at it to find what I do well I realized that there are indeed some things I do well. Even though my idea of well might be relative.

I became aware that I am generally good at rhythm guitar. I have a good sense of timing and rhythm (my wife thinks I should play percussion. This is not entirely wrong, but I like to play it on the guitar) and I can reliably chug away through a chord progression creating a decent rhythmic groove.

As soon as this thought formed in my mind I felt a warm happy glow about my guitar playing. Yes, my guitar playing. That thing I'd always been so ashamed of because I couldn't do this or that or didn’t understand so and so. That guitar playing, modest as it may be, is now something I feel GOOD about.

If my experience is anything to go by a focus on your strengths could be a powerful tool to make you feel better about your guitar playing. That's why I'm sharing it with you today. Now, think about your playing and find something good about it, even something small. Leave a comment by clicking the link below to share it with us, I'd love to hear about your guitar strength.

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2 comments:

MJK (Mike) said...

What Is Your Guitar Playing Strength?

I WANT to learn the guitar and I practice when ever I can. If I am not practicing, I am hitting blogs like yours to see what I can use for my next practice session.

The hard part is that I am trying to cram in or recover 20 years of loss time.

Gary Fletcher said...

Mike, I think WANT is a great strength. Thanks for sharing with us.

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