A Method For Practicing Deeply

Three weeks ago I introduced the concept of practicing the minimum, emphasizing the importance of depth rather than breadth in your practicing.

This week I'll show you a simple method you can apply to your practice times that will help you learn to practice deeply.

Here's the idea...think like a teacher.

"What does that mean?"

Fair question.

For one, you could actually teach someone what you're working on. Find a friend (guitar player or not) and explain the concepts or techniques that you're learning. Give them as much detail as possible. This is particularly challenging if your "student" in not a guitarist.

Great teachers ask great questions. This is the second way you can begin thinking like a teacher - learn to ask great questions. For instance, if you're learning a new lick, a great teacher might ask:

  • What harmonies does/could this lick outline?
  • How could you alter the lick to make it outline other harmonies?
  • How could you sequence this lick?
  • What would happen if you started the lick on the upbeat rather than the downbeat?
  • How could you alter your phrasing to make it sound more like a horn player?

    Give this method a try next time you practice guitar. Make it a habit and watch your progress go through the roof!

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