Learning how to play guitar or learning to play guitar better must be at the top of the list of millions of people throughout the world … especially at the beginning of a new year! Following through with one’s promise to oneself might, at times, seem a difficult and overwhelming prospect, but, like most new endeavors, a simple plan, a bit of resolve, and a lot of patience will win the day. Guitar teacher Scott Jensen, who offers guitar lessons in Minneapolis / St. Paul, and who has a profile on Lessons.com (please click here to see Scott’s page and watch our interview with him), has sent us an excellent article outlining his ideas about how to play guitar better in 2015, and we invite you to read it for some valuable tips on how to proceed with your guitar playing journey – whether you’re just beginning to play or seeking to advance your playing.

 

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Play Guitar Better in 2016
by Scott Jensen

The start of a new year is always the perfect opportunity to take a look at the different aspects of your life and set some new goals so you continue to grow and feel a sense of achievement in
your life. This certainly applies to guitar playing.

Here are five things you can do that will make a significant impact in your guitar playing in
2015. Be sure to read through each one and truly commit to implementing and following
through with them. Goals only work if you make a conscious effort to achieve them.

So in no particular order are five key things a guitar player should focus on in 2015

1. Play more

This is as easy as it gets. Just play more. Learning the guitar is a contact sport. You have to put
it in your hands to get any better. Watching instructional DVDs, shopping for gear or reading
guitar magazines won’t get you there. Pick up the guitar and PLAY IT! If you play twice a
week right now, increase it to four times a week. If you play for 30 minutes a day, play for an
hour. Keep pushing the time up little by little throughout the year.

2. Learn a new style of music

This is an awesome way for you to keep the creative juices flowing and stay motivated. Learning
a new style of music will not only expand what you know on the guitar but will have a big
impact on the current style(s) you play now.

3. Take guitar lessons

The absolute fastest way to make progress on the guitar is with a good teacher. Ask around in
your area to find a good guitar teacher that can help you with your guitar playing goals.
Typically music stores are a great place to look as they may have in store teachers or bulletin
boards where guitar teachers advertise. Of course another great resource is
FindAGuitarTeacher.com. It’s free to use and with their easy geographic navigation system, you
can review profiles of teachers in your area so you can find the perfect fit for what you are
looking for in lessons. A lot of teachers are including video profiles now so you can get a feel
for their personality and teaching style before committing. It’s an awesome resource!

4. Learn more songs

Learning to play your favorite songs is probably what got you to pick up the guitar in the first
place. Technique and theory are important but make sure you have a good list of riffs, licks,
full songs etc to work on. This will keep you inspired, motivated and excited about learning
to play.

5. Play better today than yesterday

Daily commitment is important and your mind has a lot to do with your success. Be
committed and stay positive. Track your progress in a notebook or spreadsheet so you can
look back and see your accomplishments or better yet, record yourself. With technology
today, it is easier than ever. You’ll be amazed at the improvement you hear from the
beginning of the year to the end. When you hear yourself every day sometimes you don’t
hear the improvement. Recordings won’t lie to you though. As a final thought, learning to play the guitar is a journey, not a race. Be patient with yourself and just enjoy the ride.

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