The Easiest Mistakes To Make When Learning Guitar By Yourself
There are some very easy mistakes to make when you try to learn guitar by yourself that we see time and time again. For you, if you know what these mistakes are. You can avoid a lifetime of feeling like you suck at the guitar, wondering how other people got good. So that you can have fun learning and playing the guitar.
Learning from a variety of sources
There are tonnes of resources of there for learning the guitar. And because the guitar is such a popular instrument. You probably know a few friends and families who can teach you a thing or two on the guitar.
The most important thing to consider is whether your sources are credible
Often learning from different sources means getting distracted by
multiple people that may be telling you the same thing over again. Which isn’t
helpful. Or telling you different information. Then it becomes difficult to judge
who is right.
On top of that, the information may not be useful to you or what you
need at that point. Or it’s difficult to know how to implement that
specific “trick” or “tip” into your playing.
It’s much easier and faster to learn the guitar from a few credible sources until you can to an advanced level where you have much better judgement of the information. When you are just beginning, it’s difficult to know which way to go or how to manage and practise the information that you learn.
What I suggest is focus on learning from a couple of credible sources that you trust and can help you get to where you want to go on the guitar.
Only learning songs (that you like)
Lots of apps, games, online tutorials are focused around learn to play this song for a beginner.
Walking you through each chord, note, strumming pattern. Etc. Lots of people even download their own tab of their favourite songs and learn those note to note.
The challenges that come with only learning songs, and especially
songs that you like is that you can be missing out on a lot of other
useful stuff on the guitar.
You could be missing out on tonnes of useful theory knowledge and
understanding of the fretboard. Which will hold you back from moving
away from that piece of music. You can end up feeling like a copycat
not knowing how to be creative with the guitar. If you want to play
with other people. You may get stuck with not knowing how to
communicate with others when playing together.
On top of that, often people who only learn songs end up getting poor technique. Because their use of the guitar is very specific to the songs. Rather than all over the guitar. And lots of people learn to play parts of a song and end up having to give up on the harder parts because they lack to technique to go it. And it becomes a vicious cycle of never being good enough to play through a whole song. Which is how lots of self-taught guitar players feel inadequate and frustrated with their playing.
Some persistent students do make significant progress on the guitar, especially for those specific songs. But it’s normally at a determent to their long-term growth as a musician.
I would recommend that you expand your guitar playing to include music theory, ear training, technique training amongst other things to improve your creativity and understanding of the guitar. So that you can feel more like a musician and feel confident with playing the guitar.
Learning the guitar all by yourself
This is for anyone who is trying to keep themselves in their
bedroom without reaching out to anyone. You are not receiving
any feedback on how you’re playing is going. What needs more
work on. No one to keep you accountable.
Spending hours online, on forums, on YouTube. Often spending
more time researching than actually playing the guitar.
The number one thing that is missing that would immediately help your guitar playing if this is what you are doing is feedback.
Having someone to keep you accountable, give you direction and feedback on what you are doing will help you so much. It will make sure that you are playing and working on the right things to help you do what you want on the guitar. They can help you avoid bad habits or bad techniques that may lead to injuries.
You want someone who will be there long term who can lay out what you need to do to help your long-term success on the guitar. This way you have someone you trust and reassurance of having someone you can ask questions to improve your guitar playing in the most effective way possible.
If you are after learning the guitar in the most fun and effective way possible. So that you can become the guitar player you want to be. Then I would recommend you look outside the box instead of just learning songs. Keep your sources to a few trusted ones only. And have someone, whether a guitar teacher or friend that can keep you accountable and help you long term with your guitar playing.
Darryl Powis is a guitar school owner of Guitar Tuition East London which he founded himself five years ago. Specialising in helping local guitar players to improve their guitar playing. And providing fun and exciting guitar lessons to kids in London.