Hi I’m Vi Wickam, and this is another myTalentForge Quick Tip!
Have you ever felt like you’re just not getting any better? You’re practicing, you’re putting in the time, and you’re just not getting any better?
You got better for a while, and now you’re doing the same things over and over and over. And it feels like you’re even going backwards! Like you’re getting worse, instead of getting better.
I’ve had those moments myself. There was a time I was 13/14 years old where I was playing Hermon’s Hornpipe…
And it just felt like I couldn’t get it up to speed. It felt like it didn’t matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t get it to get any better!
And then all of a sudden one day it was like I had new freedom. I had figured out something.
It wasn’t a conscious improvement- it was a breakthrough. It was a transformation that all of a sudden I could do it!
And I just blasted through that plateau.
What I came to realize later was that there are moments in our musical learning path where we don’t get any better with our instrument because our ears and our mind have not gotten better.
So, as we plateau with our physical skill, our ears and our brains have a chance to adjust and step up to that next level. Because you can’t fix a problem that you can’t hear.
So as our ear develops and our cognitive skills improve, we start to realize those mistakes that we’ve been making all along. Those mistakes that we couldn’t hear before and it sounds like we’re getting worse to ourselves.
We hear those mistakes and we’re like “Geez! I’m getting worse! I’m not getting better! What’s the point of all this practice?!”
And then all of a sudden we can start to fix those problems, we can start to address those issues that we were unaware of before.
And then we have a breakthrough.
So, don’t look at those plateaus as a source of frustration- look at it like this is a chance for me to see what my room for improvement is.
Take it as an opportunity to become more aware and listen. Because that listening is really what takes us to the opportunity to breakthrough.
So when you feel a plateau, understand we’ve all been there and it is right before that breakthrough that you feel the most frustrated.
It’s like the old saying says, “It’s always darkest before dawn”. That plateau gets the most frustrating right before you have that breakthrough.
But stick with it, keep focused, keep your nose pointed forward, and you will have that breakthrough! I promise you! Stick to it, you can do it!
And that’s your Quick Tip for today. I’ll see you next time!