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Finding Time to Practice Guitar


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How do I find time to practice?
People often complain about the fact that they don't have enough time to practice guitar.  It's true that with hectic a schedule, there's a shortage of free time to spend with your guitar.  I've found that one of the best ways to deal with this issue is to simply make time to play guitar. 

Now I don't say that as a cliche, I mean it as a practicality:  Set an hour or half an hour a day apart - a time slot that's dedicated to guitar learning and nothing else.  Then stick to it...

Finding time to practice guitar is a serious challenge for some and one of the reasons many people never progress.  Here's some possible solutions.

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Maybe you've got an hour between dinner and bed that usually ends up with you flipping channels on the couch.  Well how about making 8-9pm your "guitar time".  Or if you're a morning person and (unlike the rest of us), you don't mind getting up a little earlier, try and squeeze in a half hour between 7 and 7h30 for guitar practice.
The deal is that if you're serious about guitar, you'll find time to practice.  And the best way to do this is to actually stick to a practicing schedule.  If you've decided to spend 45 minutes in practice every night at 9pm, discipline yourself so than when 8h55 approaches, you switch off the TV and get your music out.

For most of us, weekends will be a great time for serious guitar practice.  If you've been playing longer than a month and have developed some calluses on your fingers, you'll be able to play for a couple of hours on end on Saturdays and Sundays.

If you're unfortunate enough to have a seriously hectic life and a daily schedule that simply doesn't allow for regular dedicated practice sessions, finding time to practice might be more difficult.  In such a case I recommend that you redeem your free time by using it to play guitar.  By this I mean that you should snatch the ten minutes or twenty minutes you sometimes have free in between your  appointments/activities/routines etc.  Time adds up.  So even if you only manage to squeeze two 15min time slots of guitar into your crazily overworked day, you've still spend almost four hours of practice in a week.

Here's one amazingly simple tip that'll help with practice time constraints: Buy a Guitar stand! If you've got a 30min break between two activities in a hectic schedule, you don't want to spend 5 minutes of it taking your guitar out of its case, switching on the amp, connecting the cables, plucking up your effects pedal etc.  And then another 5 minutes putting everything back again...

A guitar that's set up and ready to play will help you use your limited practice time more effectively.  It might even help to make an approaching practice session more inviting.  So get a guitar stand, and if possible, leave you guitar set up and ready to go.

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