Too little time to practise the Violin?

May 3, 2019, 6:28 AM ·

Too little time to practise the violin?

We all recognise this sentence. Be honest, when did you last use this expression?
In my violin teaching practice, I hear it every day: “sorry, this week I was so busy, there was very little time to practise”.

Surprisingly, some players then go on and play much better than they usually do. Others however, and I would say the vast majority of my adult students, feel terrible during their lesson and if I am not careful and put some positivity back into their playing, the negative spiral has firmly established itself.

In this blog, I am hoping to make you feel more in charge of your own time. It is not a miracle cure, no magic wand to give you more hours in a day, but it will hopefully offer some guidance to show how you are worth it to set aside some practice-time for yourself.

Time is highly elastic. We cannot make more time, but time will stretch to accommodate whatever you choose to put into it. The key is treating your playing as a priority.
Rather than using the expression ‘I don’t have time’, it is better to say I did not do this because it was not a priority. If you think about it, that’s really more accurate language. Using this language makes you aware that time is a choice. Most players that I meet are highly intelligent people who, have the power to fill their lives with the things that they find important, with the things that deserve to be there.

How do we treat our priorities with the commitment that they deserve?
You might look at this as if it were a performance review at work, except for that I would like to look ahead at the coming year, rather than look back at what happened earlier.
What would you do to make this coming year really special?

So, if you would like to become really good at playing the violin, get that Grade exam that you always wanted, join the orchestra that you deeply wished you could join one day, start today by thinking about the small steps it might take to reach your goal. Start by looking at your diary and block the time it will take to work towards that audition, or to play your piece without stopping. Do it before you do anything else.

I know that this is not always easy. I am totally aware that some people’s lives are more complicated than others. And it is not for me to judge anyone’s struggle to find the hours in the day. But I do think that with a few pointers, you too might find the extra time to commit to your violin if you really want to.

Let’s face it, when most of us have bits of time, what do we tend to do?
Pull out the phone, potter around the house, start watching TV, you know what I mean.

My question is: do these little bits of time give you any joy?
You want to try to be a bit creative with those little bits of time. Looking at the whole of your schedule and see where the good bits can go. For starters, leave your violin case open and your music on the music stand, ready to be played.

When you focus on what really matters to you, you too can find the time to build those trajectories of success, those lines towards the goal that you have set yourself. Anything less than that is doing yourself a disservice. You can do it, like so many others that have gone there.

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