As with many aspects of life, discovering something about our natural interests and strengths can lead to significantly beneficial outcomes in the long term. This principle is very true with regard to the choice of a musical instrument: Indeed, the instrument that we choose can come to define our approach to music and even change our lives.
The Link Between Passion and Discipline
When considering which instrument to start with, take a few moments to jot down what you like about music in general. Do you have a favorite musician or composer? Do you have a favorite style of music? Do you aspire to play particular pieces or particular songs once you develop musical skills?
The Choice of a First Instrument
How you answer these questions can have a big impact on how you’ll approach music in earnest. For example, if your absolute musical idol is Eddie Van Halen, you’ll probably want to start off your musical journey with the purchase of a guitar. If your dream is to master the works of Ludwig van Beethoven, on the other hand, you’ll probably want to look at learning how to play the piano first.
To wit, your passion will be the force in music that carries you through the difficulties of learning an instrument and mastering a particular musical form. If your heart is not in the learning process, in other words, you’ll make the experience of learning about music feel intensely negative and unpleasant. And who exactly thrives on negative reinforcement?
Avoiding the Musical Sunk Cost Fallacy
Secondly, it is important to remember that you are under no obligation to continue learning an instrument that does not appeal to you in the long run. If a few months of piano lessons haven’t made the experience of playing piano rewarding for you, don’t punish yourself by sticking with an instrument that you don’t like. By all means, try out a guitar if the piano leaves you cold! If playing the violin isn’t your thing, moreover, maybe you’ll love playing the clarinet. Give yourself the freedom to experiment with different musical instruments and different musical forms.
The world of music is a very big place: Finding your place in this art form may take time and a bit of effort; however, giving yourself the chance to discover your passion for music and musical performance will bring you a lifetime of meaningful experiences. And a life dedicated to music doesn’t get much better than that!