How To Improve The Expressiveness Of Your Guitar Playing
Do you want to play guitar with feeling (but struggle to do so)? You are not alone. Guitar players at all levels want to become more creative than they are and learn to fully express themselves through their guitar playing.
Watch this free guitar video to learn how simple it can be to play highly emotional guitar licks and solos. .
Click on the video to begin watching it.
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Bad Guitar Practice Habit #1: Becoming Frustrated By Mistakes
Guitarists who learn on their own frequently fill their mind with negative/disempowering thoughts such as “I’m not good enough”, “I suck” or “This is too hard”.
These kinds of thoughts not only make practice more stressful and frustrating, but take up space for more productive thoughts that are helpful.
Guitar players who get the most out of their practice time think of mistakes as a positive thing. It shows them what they must work on next to improve.
When you think this way, you open the door to asking yourself questions that help you get better faster, such as: “How can I practice X as effectively as possible?” or “What is the specific mistake I must correct to play Y?”
Bad Guitar Practice Habit #2: Wasting Time
Guitarists commonly make the critical mistake of playing an entire lick over and over when they only struggle to play a few notes within it. This wastes tons of time and makes your progress slower.
Making your practice more effective means only spending time to correct problems that need to be corrected. The less time you waste, the faster you improve.
You streamline this process by creating an effective practice schedule that leads you directly to your goals.
Bad Guitar Practice Habit #3: Not Focusing On The Right Things
Because guitarists who learn on their own have no idea what the right things are to practice, they work on things that seem to be right.
For example, they might feel like it is the right things to practice playing scales over and over to a metronome in order to get better at playing guitar solos. Then they try to play solos creatively and find they have no idea what to do.
This is because they didn’t think to practice things like phrasing, skill integration, creativity and so forth. This results in a massive loss of motivation to practice.
How To Practice Guitar More Effectively And Reach Your Musical Goals:
Look for the best guitar instructor you can find. This teacher will lay the foundation for you to achieve your goals using effective practice strategies and routines. Then you have the tools needed to stay motivated for a very long time.
This Underappreciated Trick Keeps You Motivated To Practice Guitar For A Long Time
Why do so many guitar players lose motivation to practice? This commonly occurs from boredom, not getting great results or not seeing yourself actively getting better.
Solution: Track your guitar playing progress consistently each week.
How tracking your progress keeps you motivated and makes you a better guitarist faster:
1. You Learn What Is And Isn’t Working In Your Practice.
Without tracking your guitar playing, it isn’t always clear which practice items are helping you make the most progress. Tracking your playing helps you do this as specifically as possible. This makes your guitar practice extremely productive.
For example, you get much better results from your guitar practice when you understand that practicing scales for 2 hours per day is less effective for helping you improvise better than practicing phrasing for 30 minutes per day.
One way to prove this is to use one approach per week and track which one helps you improvise longer without repeating the same ideas. Note: This is just one example, there are tons of other ways to track different guitar playing skills.
2. You Get Proof Of The Progress You Already Made
You gain a lot of motivation for guitar practice when you see how much closer you are to achieving your goals each week.
This makes practice fun and exciting. This is one of the best ways to eliminate boredom in your practice and make it into an enjoyable activity.
3. You Identify Your Musical Weaknesses
Understanding your weak points on guitar tells you what should take priority in your practice. When you track your progress, you quickly identify which areas of your playing are the weakest (helping you avoid working too much on things you’ve already mastered).
This is very important for making your practice time very efficient. Even with only 20 minutes a day to practice, you get great results as long as your practice is as effective as possible.
“When I met Tom Hess, I knew that this is the guy. Just going through the evaluation form, all the questions, different questions, and he was digging deeper and deeper into all my goals and all that stuff... and no one has ever done that with me before, so I felt right away that this is the guy.”
The level that I was at before I went to Tom for lessons was that I could play pretty fast, I could play sloppy, I didn’t know nothing about music theory, so I was kind of unbalanced, I was uneven. I was a good player technically, but I knew very little about music theory. So I wanted to even that out, and Tom has helped me, not only evening that out, but also exceeding my expectations. So now I’m playing at a level that I didn’t expect that I could play at. So that’s... I’m very happy with that.
I like lessons with Tom because of the format basically. He gives a variety of formats... not just one format, like video for example, but also pdf files and audio files that you can take with you if you’re doing something else... you have to do labor that day, laundry or whatever... then you can listen to the sessions and while... you can actually benefit when you’re not even practicing, so it’s a no brainer.
Gottfrid Norberg Waxin, Sweden
“I found Tom Hess on the net through articles, and I read quite a few of those before I went to Tom’s website. Even though I’m not a metal player at all, and Tom is obviously a metal player, I could still see that his ideas and way of teaching could really benefit me. So I pretty much signed up for online guitar lessons with Tom straight away once I’d gone through the website, and it’s just been a real eye opener with the way he teaches…”
... the integration of concepts that he’ll give you and having a really structured strategy… not just week to week lessons, but things that - you can see from one lesson to the next - really develop and continue to work on your technique and your theory and aural skills and those types of things. So I’d played a long time… 20 years before I really caught onto Tom, and I’d had a lot of lessons, and I’d taught and played but I can really see improvements in my technique, sweeping, and picking which weren’t strong parts of my playing.
I feel like Tom has a good gauge of where you’re at as a guitar player and what you need, and there just seemed to be so much more stuff in the lessons week to week than what you’d ever get in an hour or so in a one on one lesson… way more. So yeah I think that and the forum. I think, I’d pay the money just for the forum. That alone would be fine… I wouldn’t have a problem with that at all. So that alone is massive!
The price for the lessons, that’s nothing... nothing. You know, I think it’s, pretty cheap to be honest. I don’t mean that in a bad way, cheap. Cheap is not a good word, but I just think it’s great value… awesome value. I mean, you know, you could pay that for one-to-one lessons and you just don’t get the same results and support of the forum and the content and the strategies.
Other teachers I’ve had have been good players, and some have become good friends too. But when I’ve started lessons with Tom I’ve got something to compare that to and a lot of it is just sort of teaching songs from week to week… a lot of the lesson will be left up to you… you’ll go to your lesson and they’ll be like what do you want to do today? At the time I said, oh do this song or that song, but with Tom you start to realize that you know, there’s more to it… the goals and you know he’s sort of more in contact with what you want to be able to do as a player, because he’s asking you the questions and then setting up the strategies, so I find that really good.
Yeah I can see more results in 18 months in a lot of areas in my playing than you know 20 years. So it’s sort of, you know, would’ve been great 20 years ago to have met Tom.
Simon Candy, Melbourne, Australia
“I've played guitar for several years and I think I've taken it as far as I could take it and I was going on the internet and found Tom, I take Breakthrough Guitar Lessons from him and I have to say it was the best thing that I've ever could have done. There is nothing better than Breakthrough Guitar Lessons with Tom.”
Tom has the innate ability to hone in on whatever problems you have and immediately fix it for you. The lessons are very goal oriented, very detailed and Tom is very approachable. I consider Tom to be a master teacher. A master teacher is someone who cares about their students, who talks to their students, who shares with their students and gets them to the place that they need to be as a guitar player. And Tom, I will tell you, does all of that and more.
Rovan Deon, Rahway, NJ, USA
Having a teacher is great, but organizing your guitar practice effectively just takes your playing to a new dimension (fast). This is why I designed the Guitar Practice Generator. Here is what my students have to say about it:
“The Practice Generator is great… really really good. I find it’s so much easier to be able to get up, get your practice set for the day and you just have to look at the screen, the spreadsheet it can put it into, and just know exactly what you’ve got to do. I used to sit there for a long time and think, what should I do? You know.”
There’s so many things it was just overwhelming for me… it’s like should I be doing this, should I be doing that, then I’d be doing something and thinking about something else I should be doing. It just lays it out for you, so that’s great. You can set the time that you want, and it’s specific to what you want to work on too, so you can change it up each week… it just helps to give you structure to your practicing each day, so you know what you need to do. Even the little countdown timer, all that visual thing, but I think that makes a difference too… funny enough... to see that counting down you sort of think, ok I really got to use this time. I think if you’ve got less time, you use it better. So, just seeing that sort of ticking down and beeping at the end, sort of makes you think I’ve got to use this 10… 20 minutes whatever it might be and you get a lot done. I also find it great, because I use a similar thing with my students as well with the Practice Generator.
It’s going to ask you what you want to work on. Like you can select from present things that are in the program, techniques, songwriting, theory, lots of things. Or you can put in your own things that you want to work on, and then it’ll ask you a bunch of questions, whether it’s a long term, short term goal, whether or not you’re close to mastering this particular skill or concept you want to work on, or if it’s something that’s totally new to you… I think there’s a lot of advanced settings as well that you can select whether you want it to be something that comes up daily, or if it’s you know… you want it every second day… there’s a ton of things in there that you can do to customize it further. But you can save it and it spits out a schedule for you. It’s not something that’s just sort of, you know, been calculated off something that’s not relevant to you. You can see very specific times to work on things, and you can get… it just makes a lot of sense when you see it.
I recommend the Practice Generator because it’s going to save you time. It’s going to save you so much time. You’ll get more done in 20 minutes I think… that’s a minimum, than 2 hours. It’s very direct and it sets it all up for you, so you don’t have to sit there investing time into thinking about what to do, you just do it.
Simon Candy, Melbourne, Australia
“Before the Practice Generator, I might have been at worst, I wouldn’t have had a plan at all and a lot of my practice time would be fritted away kind of burning energy thinking about what to do next. At best, I might have had a plan for a practice session, but it would not have been based on anything.”
So certain items need to be practiced in different ways. Maybe some things are best practiced in big chunks, some things are best practiced in lots of small chunks separated out. The Practice Generator can take this into account. And it can plan out your whole next week of practices based on that.
So maybe this item based on Tom’s experience and how they programed it... it’ll know ok this item would be best in little chunks every other day is how he’s going to absorb this information best… these items he needs to be doing for an hour every day to be… to be getting it. Practice Generator takes care of all of that so even if I had a plan, I wouldn’t know why my plan was that way, it wouldn’t be based on anything. Whereas Practice Generator it’s all based on Tom Hess’s experience as a guitar teacher, which is formidable. So I went from often not having a plan and wasting a lot of time thinking about what to do to not only having a plan, but having a very intelligent plan to make the most of every second I spend practice guitar.
The Practice Generator takes into account how different items, different subjects should be practiced. And it does that because it is programmed with everything that Tom Hess has learned in his long career instructing guitar very successfully. So it’s not like the Practice Generator just divides up your time evenly between the items you're practicing, it takes into account how things need to be done. In order to do that yourself… I mean, assuming you could magic... you could snap your fingers and magically make a program that did what you want it to do... wouldn’t even get into having to program it yourself, you would need to have Tom Hess’s experience and success rate… I mean really Tom Hess’s understanding of how to learn guitar… how to master guitar in order to be able to create something like that which very few people… very few people do understand that. Very few people have that experience and that understanding so I don’t think there are many people who can create something like that and it wouldn’t be easy to do even if they could.
First and most, the Practice Generator will help you to make sure that every second of your practice time is organized, efficient and effective. It’s really easy to use. It does not take squat for time to set up, you’ll have your next week of practice planned out so you don’t have to think about it in a couple minutes. And it’s cheap. There’s really no reason not to do it. It costs maybe a few dollars a month for all that benefit. It’s a pretty obvious choice to me.
Leo Smith, Iowa City, Iowa, USA
Learn how to express your emotions freely any time you play a solo by taking rock guitar lessons online.
After watching this video, review what my students are saying about the results they get from studying with me in online guitar lessons.