One of my students and her mom recommended a post called, How to Steal Like an Artist (and 9 other things nobody told me). Obviously tongue-in-cheek, but the author has some fabulous tips that will help you think more creatively and work more productively. I especially appreciate #9 – “Be boring. (It’s the only way to get work done.)”
I have often told people that the way to live life enjoyably is by making yourself do lots of little things that you don’t feel like doing or that aren’t enjoyable. Here’s a simple illustration: I love eating homemade granola and yogurt for breakfast every morning. I look forward to it and find it very pleasing to partake of this morning meal while having my quiet time. Wednesday morning is when I make the granola. If, on a particular Wednesday, I feel bored of making it and decide not to then I am forced to endure the rest of the week without my anticipated breakfast (because the chances of me making it another day are not good if I neglect to do it on the day I have time scheduled to do so).
We can easily draw a parallel to music study. It may feel boring to sit down and practice every single day. There are days we won’t feel like working on the same piece again, or reviewing the same scale. But this is the stuff that enjoying playing and playing well are made of. If we can discipline ourselves to do the mundane, daily things of life, we will find greater enjoyment in the whole. That was the main point of my article, “I’m Dreaming…Of Becoming A Great Musician” a couple years ago. This is something I need to constantly remember for myself and my students!