Practicing When You Don’t Want To

It’s a lot of fun being a full-time musician! I make a living doing what I love.

A huge part of being successful in music is to make a commitment to practicing music every day. For me, it seems very effective to practice for three hours a day- ideally broken up into 30-minute chunks with about 10 minutes rest between each.

My jazz professor Dr. Ira Wiggins had a saying that “Skip one day of practicing, and only you will know. Skip two days, and other musicians will know. Skip three days, and the whole audience will know.” With that in mind, I’m loathe to skip a day of practicing because I always want to play my best.

One of the catches of being your own boss is that you must be self-motivated. Even on rough days when you haven’t had much sleep, it’s still necessary to sit and practice for three hours. Sometimes that’s very painful!

And yet I feel like practicing on those tough days builds character and self-esteem. I tend to get more out of a practice session when I have to work through the fog, because I’m exercising my sense of determination.

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