4 Tools To Help You Learn Guitar

So you’re on the path to learning guitar. That’s great. I want to help.

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3 Ways Music Can Help Your Brain Function Better

When I write, I listen to upbeat but not stressful instrumental music. I feel like it helps the words flow.

And as it turns out, there’s science behind that feeling.

music helps the brain funtion

Using science, let’s look at how music helps our brains function better. Here are just three ways…

Music helps flood your brain with good chemicals

music and the brain

Listening to music is like taking your brain to the gym.

When you listen to music, it stimulates the creation of some brain chemicals, including dopamine (which people often call the “motivation molecule”) and oxytocin (the chemical that helps you form bonds with others and be more trustworthy).

So pop in your earbuds. Go see a concert. Sing a little. It’s good for you.

Music helps you learn

guitar

You know how you can remember every word to a song, but you can’t even name all 50 states? That’s because music makes information stick. It helps you learn better.

The key is to learn music. Learn guitar. Learn piano. Get singing lessons.

An article in PBS talks about the many ways music helps us learn in general. In that article, Dr. Eric Rasmussen, chair of the Early Childhood Music Department at the Peabody Preparatory of The Johns Hopkins University, says this is true.

“The horizons are higher when you are involved in music,” he says. “Your understanding of art and the world, and how you can think and express yourself, are enhanced.”

Here’s a quick look at how learning music helps us improve in other areas:

  • improvement in language development
  • increase in IQ
  • improved test scores
  • increased brain connectivity
  • increased spatial intelligence (how things work together)

RELATED: 4 Tools To Help You Learn Guitar

Music makes you feel better

I think we all know music makes you feel things, but here’s some scientific proof.

Studies show that listening to music — even sad music — can boost your mood. It can help with worry and sadness, decreasing the “stress hormone” called cortisol.

Josh Garrels, Kings Of Convenience, and Nick Drake are some artists whose music has helped me get through tough life stuff.

Music can give us hope, and a hopeful person is a better functioning person.

Music in my ears

Welcome to another edition of Music In My Ears. Please enjoy and, if you like, share.

Fantastic Negrito

One-word description: gritty-soul

Rebirth Brass Band

One-word description: NOLA

Punch Brothers

One-word description: fast-fingers

Kings Of Convenience

One-word description: sleepy

The Gap

My writing stinks – stinks like garbage sometimes. I’m embarrassed by it.

It’s like when I started playing the guitar — I was really bad. I could see where I wanted to be, what I wanted to be playing. And where I wasn’t was more visible than where I was.

I knew that if I kept playing chords and songs that I would inch my way toward my goal of playing like Nick Drake or Kings of Convenience. And in the same way, I know that if I keep writing, even small amounts every day, I’ll get better. I’ll need to endure the writing calluses.

RELATED: 4 Tools To Help You Learn Guitar

This is the gap, the void between where I want my work to be and where it actually is. But this gap is good, it’s great. It gives a reason for improvement. If there’s no gap, there’s no need to find a way to cross it.

I think the closer I get to the other side — where I want my work to be — the more it will evade me. Because my goals will keep changing and getting bigger and harder to achieve.

It’s an unattainable goal.

This is how people get better at their craft – by having giant expectations of their work and trying to make their work meet those expectations.

RELATED: Why It’s Important To Learn Something New On A Regular Basis

“It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s going to take awhile. It’s normal to take awhile. You’ve just gotta fight your way through.” – Ira Glass