Updated: Mar 3
This was my VERY FIRST VIDEO that I filmed for my YouTube channel back in July of 2021. I have some updates -- and wanted to add on to the content in the video. So here you go, a few more tips for a piano practice routine.
1. Make a Goal
What are your current goals? Are you struggling to reach them? How many pieces are you working on? In making our goals with piano practice, it’s really important to take into consideration what is realistic -- and when considering what’s realistic, we need to think about:
*number of pieces/songs we're practicing
*what level we're currently at
*what level we'd like to be
*other things we're working on in addition to piecse -- like technique exercises, scales, theory, ear training, etc
*how all of the above things work together
I often see students (especially adults) set really, really high bars and lofty goals. Now, in general, I’m a big fan of large goals. By all means -- AIM HIGH! However, I’m also a fan of seeing students have a positive experience with their piano practice, because ultimately, if we really hate something (aka, it’s not a positive experience), we usually quit, rightfully so. Piano practice does not need to be awful. It can be fun, it can be rewarding, it can be pleasant! It won’t necessarily be those things ALL OF THE TIME, but it can definitely be those things most of the time. SO -- in making your goal -- consider the above things. A teacher can definitely help you strike a balance that’s right for you. If you’re struggling, comment below and let me know and I’m happy to provide feedback!
Pairing is an incredibly effective way to make a habit and to make something a part of your daily routine. I’m a HUGE fan of pairing and it works really well. There are also other things you can consider to make your piano practice routine work in your life.
*consider trying to put your practice routine at a time of day when you feel creative and fresh -- for me this is always the morning even though when it is the morning time I don't always WANT to practice.
*remember your why -- why do you want to learn how to play the piano? This can be really helpful as a motivating factor of incorporating piano practice into your daily routine. I know personally I have much bigger why's when there are deadlines, goals, and specific targets. :)
*when all else fails -- bribe yourself. Making a new routine is tough -- sometimes we need some kind of reward system in the beginning while we work to make something a habit. I know I WANT to be healthy and have a body that functions really well -- but that doesn't mean I always WANT to eat only healthy things and exercise every day. However, on days when I feel completely un-motivated -- a little bribery will go a long way. If I do my run today, I can x, y, z this weeend. If I practice 20 minutes today, I can x, y, z, tonight. Bribery is NOT just for kids.
3. Chose a realistic time
This will have a lot to do with the answers to questions from the “Make a Goal” section above. I know that often times I see students trying to create goals and choosing times that won’t be in balance with one another. In answering the questions in the first point of this post, make sure that you either are willing to adjust the answers to those questions, or the amount of time you’re willing to practice so that they can be in realistic alignment with each other. Again, a teacher can be really helpful at this point if you’re getting stuck here (ask me, I’m a teacher)!
4. Be Consistent
This is definitely the part of creating a routine where I see people fall short the most. We start out with the best of intentions -- but if your goal and time commitment aren’t in realistic alignment, it will be really difficult to be consistent. Music has taught me that with most things in life, little bits over long periods of time will make a difference. Even if your time commitment is small each day -- the days upon days of consistency WILL equal progress. You will see changes, it’s just a matter of being consistent.
YOU’VE GOT THIS!
Do you have other things that have worked for you in the creation or maintaining of your routine? Please share and help everyone out!
Until next time!
***As part of my goal to educate and motivate as many people as possible, I’m now accepting donations via Patreon. This will give me more time to focus on making videos and producing more high quality content. Buy me a coffee here.