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Why Adults Should Learn An Instrument

Colbie Caillat performs at the Uptown Theatre in Napa, California
(Photo by Tim Mosenfelder, Getty Images For Live In The Vineyard LLC)

At some point in life..we all usually take a look back and ponder the coulda, shoulda, woulda’s in life!  Most of us will entertain the thought that IF we would have just stuck with learning an instrument in our youth, that we would’ve been so glad we did.

Well, as we know…It’s  WAY easier learning anthing as a kid!!  When you hand a kid an instrument, and teach them a few things..they think “Cool I’m playing”  But, when an adult plays,they think “wow..that sounds awful!” So we quickly get discouraged and don’t follow through with it!

I myself however, was the discouraged perfectionist as a kid and quickly got frustrated when it didn’t sound good and gave up! I was used to things coming easily for me on physical level in gymnastics, dance etc. but, sitting still to focus and concentrate on something so intricate..was tough for me! I was an ADD kid and still am.

As an adult, singing in a band for years I wished so much I could contribute more than just singing. So, I Finally committed to sticking with it!

The learning curve is HUGE and I can’t tell you how often I wanted to just sit on the floor and cry!  But, after just 6 months of playing consistently…I actually am finally feeling like “I’m getting it!”

I’m using the “SISNI Guitar Method” created by Tony Woods (who happens to be my boyfriend) And he is an excellent teacher so certainly that is to my benefit.

But, point being…it is POSSIBLE! I also have a bit of a hinderence in that I’m still extremely A.D.D. and visually I can’t conceive printed material on paper, so I have to learn a little differently than most.

But, I’m happy to say..My dog no longer leaves the room when I play and instead lays quietly at my feet!  I still have a LONG way to go and I still struggle but..I’m glad I am sticking to it.

Research shows it even helps the brain connect in a way that helps prevent Alzheimer’s.

Professor and Bluegrass Fiddler Carolyn Osborne says “Adults are used to being in control, and learning music places you in a position of not being able to control things because much of learning music takes place in parts of your brain that do not respond to your conscious desires.

At the same time, the process of playing music, because it is not just a conscious phenomenon, is deeply satisfying because it uses more of your brain than most other human activities.

If you can be patient with yourself, you can develop a new skill and a new way of relating to other people.”

I now believe, it is NEVER too late to try something new! And the satisfaction you get from sticking with it through the challenge is empowering!

So, pick up that instrument today! Just think…the time will pass anyway, and someday you may be very good! If at very least it will bring you joy in learning something new!

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