Human motivation: mentors, buddies and groups

Practice can be lonely

One of the difficulties of slogging through thousands of hours of detailed-oriented practice is the loneliness that can be so much a part of this experience. This is a major negative for many trumpeters. Encouragement, motivation and competition from other people who care about what you do as a trumpeter will help you overcome this sense of loneliness. What types of people can help a trumpeter out through this lonely journey?

  1. Most importantly, you want to have a competent and caring teacher who will praise your efforts frequently.
  2. Young trumpeters often have nurturing parents who provide encouragement and even musical guidance between lessons.
  3. Siblings for children who also play music are perhaps the most influential of practice buddies. Sometimes it’s nurturing, sometimes it’s competition, but always it’s motivating!
  4. Hopefully your teacher has a large-enough studio to have group classes. These can really create a sense of community and foster growth.
  5. You should play in at least one ensemble.
  6. Bonus points to your happiness and development if you play in a chamber group. If you aren’t in one now, you should reach out and form a group with your friends.
  7. Is there someone who could be your practice buddy? If you can get a buddy, then you really have the support to get feedback frequently. You get someone who not only knows your playing well, but who will not settle for mediocre results.

It can be fun to play music with others

Keep in mind that when you perform, your audience is more like a support group than a jury panel. They want to experience what you have to say musically. They’re rooting for you!

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