We've looked at the idea of looking up when you play before, but let's dig a little deeper.
One of the biggest struggles guitarists face is feeling locked in the same old shapes and patterns on the fretboard.
Being the "patterns-based" instrument that the guitar is, it only makes sense that so many players feel imprisoned by the shapes they know.
Here's where looking up (or even practicing in the dark and/or blindfolded) can help. When you eliminate the sense of sight from the picture, you're forced to lean more on your other senses...in this case touch and hearing.
No longer are you simply playing the "right notes" based on the scale patterns you've memorized, but you're free to follow your ears wherever they take you.
Not only that, but you'll begin to develop a more natural feel for the instrument when you aren't relying on your eyesight to guide your fingers.
Be warned though...this is a process. At first you'll feel lost and more than likely will miss just as many notes as you hit. But, as always, be patient with yourself and keep at it.
The more comfortable you get playing without looking at your hands, the more freedom you'll have as a guitarist and the stronger your ear to hand connection will get.
An added bonus is that you'll have a much easier time looking like a rockstar on stage. For more on that, see last week's post.
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