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Uke Spotlight: Metaphorical Monday

Posted on: December 22nd, 2014 by dville

I wrote this post a few years ago. It was brought to my attention recently by a visitor to the website who liked the post. After re-reading it, I realized this is one lesson that needs to be remembered everyday.

I was out riding my bicycle the other day in the beautiful environs of western San Luis Obispo County, California when I encountered the dreaded double H: Hills and Headwind. My pace slowed to what seemed to be a crawl.  I lowered my head into the wind and began ascending the first hill.  Dropping down to the lowest gear,  I thought, “If I go any slower, I’ll be standing still!”

The Goal
I raised my eyes and looked at what lay before me, more hills and the distant mountain. I immediately started thinking how hard this ride was going to be. Would I make it? I damned the wind.
I wrangled in my negative thinking, looked down at my front tire and realized I was indeed moving forward and making progress. In fact, the closer I trained my glaze on the road near my front tire, the faster I seemed to me moving.  The asphalt was a blur!
The Moment
As soon as I stopped focusing on the long term goal of the ride and concentrated on the present moment of the tire rotating rapidly upon the pavement in front of me my enjoyment of the experience improved dramatically.
This same lesson can be applied to learning a musical instrument.  Don’t be constantly thinking about getting to the top of the mountain and how hard that’s going to be.  Instead, focus your attention on the moment, listening to each note passing by.  That’s when the sheer enjoyment of playing music will be revealed.
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