How to Keep the Critic in Your Head From Wrecking Your Practice Session

How to Keep the Critic in Your Head From Wrecking Your Practice Session

Subscribe to the weekly "audio edition" via iTunes Whether through books like The Little Engine That Could or TV shows like Sesame Street, I think many of us have been exposed from an early age to the idea that positive thinking is a good thing and negative thinking is a bad thing. And indeed, the research does suggest that pervasive and excessive negativity can not just be a real downer, but have some pretty adverse effects on our life as well. But when it comes to the impact of spontaneous,…


Why the Progress You Make in the Practice Room Seems to Disappear Overnight

Why the Progress You Make in the Practice Room Seems to Disappear Overnight - PART 2

Of all of the frustrating Greek myths out there, I think the story of Sisyphus is the one that I could always relate to the most. In case it’s been a few years since your 6th grade Greek mythology unit, Sisyphus was the guy who was condemned to an eternity of pushing a huge boulder up a hill, that would always roll back down every time he got it close to the top. I think we’ve all had to deal with this sort of frustrating, seemingly futile task at some point or another in our lives. Like…


3 Questions to Ask Yourself That Could Boost the Effectiveness of Your Next Practice Session

3 Questions to Ask Yourself That Could Boost the Effectiveness of Your Next Practice Session

Subscribe to the weekly "audio edition" via iTunes Many of the challenges we deal with on a daily basis - whether in the practice room, while teaching, at work, or in life in general, don’t have easy or obvious solutions. And sure, sometimes Google can help, but often, the answer is something we have to figure out for ourselves. I imagine we’ve all had moments of inspired genius, as well as times when we get stuck and no matter what we try, keep going around in circles. But have you ever…


Having Difficulty Motivating Yourself to Practice? Research Suggests That Copycatting a Friend Could Help.

Having Difficulty Motivating Yourself to Practice? Research Suggests That Copycatting a Friend Could Help.

Subscribe to the weekly "audio edition" via iTunes I’d be willing to bet that there’s probably something in your life right now that you’re trying to change. Maybe you’ve resolved to spend more time working on scales and fundamentals this summer. Or perhaps you’re planning to do more metronome practice. Or exercise more regularly. Or eat more quinoa. Whatever it is, staying motivated and following through on the things that we’d like to do more (or less) of, can be a real challenge, no matter…


Evidence That You're Probably Not Great at Performing and Critiquing Your Performance at the Same Time

Evidence That You're Probably Not Great at Performing and Critiquing Your Performance at the Same Time

Subscribe to the weekly "audio edition" via iTunes Like most kids growing up in the Back to the Future era, I went through several jean jackets (and ''life preservers'' ) during my childhood. But there was one in particular - a green acid-washed one - that I thought was pretty darn cool. Of course, looking back at photos, it’s pretty cringy, and makes me wonder what I could possibly have been thinking… Which I suppose speaks to the discrepancy that can exist between our perception…