Holding Yourself Accountable With Guitar - 148

podcast Oct 28, 2020

Being accountable to yourself and others is a huge part of success as a guitarist.

Today, I help you reach the next step of success and supercharge your progress by changing the way you think about practice.

 Most likely, you never took the time to think: that how you approach practicing guitar can deliver big results.

So far in this series: Making the Most of Your Practice Time I've gone over setting small goals, and using a metronome. They are both actions that will put you on a shorter path to being a great musician.

But, does this sound familiar?

You want to be able to play guitar, but when things don't work out, that's the end of it. You go back to jamming, to old faithful and at least you're back to enjoying yourself. Even if you aren't getting any better.

You tried, it didn't work out right away, so it's on to something else.

But today, I'm dealing with something different that deals with how you approach practicing. Today is about mindset. And, to make the most of today's podcast, we need to have a good understanding of three things.

These things are:

  1. What a responsibility is
  2. What being accountable means
  3. And how to hold YOURSELF accountable

Oooo That's the one for guitarists. That's what we are doing here. Today

A responsibility is a thing that you take on, a task. It's something that has to get done or be taken care of.

But it's not just something you have to do alone. A responsibility can be shared.
Many people can work together and be responsible for the same task.
But the big thing is that If it is not successful you don't necessarily have to answer to anyone about it

I'm responsible for taking out the trash. If I forget to do it one night. Well, it's not the end of the world. And there is no one I have to report to. Not a big deal.

But, being accountable is different. It's all about taking ownership of a responsibility. And If you are accountable, and it is not successful, you're the one who has to answer for it.

You may have a team of people all performing a task. If it fails, the person who is accountable for it, is the one to has to answer the boss. Whoever that may be.

Part of being accountable is deciding that something is going to get done regardless of what it takes.

Can you see where I'm going here?

Why would you want to be accountable to yourself when learning guitar.
It's time to take ownership of this journey. And that advice is for a few of my students and I hope they know that I'm talking to them.

What does that mean for practicing guitarists? For those who would like to get back to getting better at the guitar.

It means: Not accepting your own excuses anymore.

Really this boils down to knowing the difference between a responsibility and being accountable?

Just going through the motions of practicing or deciding that you are going to master a certain song or technique.

How does that relate to practicing guitar?

1. That you are taking this seriously. It means that you have taken control and decided that you're responsible for the outcome. And it means that you believe that you are going to be successful, even if your current course isn't producing results.

You are going to find a way.

2. You do what you say you are going to do. Following through with your plans
It could be that you have a set time to practice and you don't miss it. It becomes a main priority. Or it could be a time limit for a goal.

Life happens everyday. And life tends to pull you away from your plans. It's easy to get distracted and be pulled away. It takes conscious effort to stay on track

3. You are active. The time is now. You have made the decision that you are done putting things off. And if you have, you have decided that you are getting back up on the horse and starting again.  You are also directing your journey by planning ahead. What's the action you are going to take next.

What are the big benefits of being accountable in your guitar practice.

1. It supercharges your progress. When you are accountable and you are struggling, you actively are looking for new ways around your problem. New ways to accomplish your goals.
You get a sense of pride when you take ownership of your responsibilities. You know inside that if you hadn't pushed yourself, you wouldn't have accomplished anything. And that extra effort that you held yourself accountable for, paid off.... and you could do it again.

2. Being Accountable to Other Musicians
If you struggle with being accountable to yourself,
Here is something else that helps a lot of guitarists. Being accountable to another. This could be in lessons or in a band or just jamming with friends. But, making a commitment to getting results where another person is involved is very motivating.

Not letting someone down. Some love competition with others.
Or, being part of a group that is achieving success. Whatever it is you are owning the results for not just you but others.

Benefits of Being Accountable

What is great about this is you get all of the benefits of ownership (being accountable to yourself) but with added value:

Being accountable to others helps you Stay on course
When you are expected or tell others that you are going to do something, and you do what you say you are going to do, there is focus.
You are less likely to be distracted.
And more likely to put other things off until you have moved past this one.
Value of Lessons/coaching.

knowing that someone who has been there before is guiding you is an extreme motivator.
You want them to think that you are capable and appreciative for the guidance.
Being accountable to your coach/teacher is a great motivator.

Keeping Up With a Group

Motivation central. This is huge. No one wants others to think badly of them. No one wants to feel left behind.

When you are accountable to a group and they are progressing it spurs your progression as well. Or the opposite, if you are moving forward, you could bring the others along with you as well.

Easy steps you can take right now to add accountability to your guitar practice.

This is so simple. It's these easy three questions that get the ball rolling. These are things that are most likely in the back of your mind but they need to come to the front. In fact, write them down, and decide you are going to stick to them. Be accountable to them. Here they are:

1. What do you want to do?
Sounds easy, but it's not. So many of us want to do so many different things. We get spread out and ineffective. Make a decision and work it until you are done.
2. How are you going to do it?
3. When is it going to get done?

That's it. Write that down and put it right where you practice. Look at your answers before you practice.


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