So you’ve decided to embark on the journey of becoming a professional-level musician. Congratulations! Expressing yourself through music is a rewarding experience that you’ll carry through the rest of your life. It’s an excellent opportunity to develop some of the most important life skills.  

No matter what musical instrument you want to learn, it can be quite challenging. You’ll struggle with self-doubt. At times, you’ll probably hate your music. Nevertheless, all individuals have the same potential for learning and growing their skills.

The only way to sound like a professional is to sound like a beginner.

Having the right mindset from the beginning will provide you the opportunity to excel through the learning process with greater ease and satisfaction. Here are 3 things you should keep in mind when preparing for the musical journey ahead.

1. You’re going to fail and it’s OK.

Failure is unpleasant. When our mistakes stare us in the face, we often find it upsetting. This feeling is deeply ingrained in our nature.

To become great at anything – in particular, to become a skilled musician – it’s OK to struggle a little. Remember, the primary benefit of failing is to give yourself a chance to get over your ego; to recognize that you haven’t succeeded; and to come back with a better, stronger approach.

Allow yourself to fail. Don’t feel bad when you play something “wrong.” You need to sound bad before you can sound good. Go beyond your comfort zone. Work on things that make you uncomfortable. You’ll make mistakes, but you’ll become better.

2. Be patient!

Beginners tend to have unrealistic expectations and believe they’ll master playing an instrument within a matter of months. It’s time to change that mindset. This will have a direct effect on your playing skill.

Remember, playing an instrument is a long-term commitment. For many musicians, it’s a life long journey. So don’t let yourself feel overwhelmed by the seemingly endless road ahead.

Keep in mind that everyone progresses at different rates. It’s discouraging to compare yourself with others. Instead, be proud of what you’ve accomplished and focus on what you’re doing. This will help you establish goals and motivate you to continue learning. Once you’ve decided to stretch and grow as a musician, it’ll be easier to push yourself forward and embrace new challenges.  

3. Hard work beats talent any day.

We’re big believers in debunking the talent myth. Many beginners believe that they simply don’t possess the talent to play music creatively and expressively. Although some people seem to have been born with a “natural gift” to play and understand music, those who practice their skills daily in order to become better will always far surpass people who don’t work hard enough.

Musical expression and creativity can be taught and learned through practice and application. Trust yourself. Practice your skills deliberately and your hard work will pay off.

As you begin your musical journey, it’s essential to have the proper mindset and a mental attitude that will help you avoid potential frustrations and disappointments.

Need expert advice and access to a supportive community of other musicians? Join Musical U today and get everything you need to become the musician that you’ve always wanted to be!


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