As an amateur musician, I have come to understand that there are many ways to play the same notes.  We can read and talk about playing music or performing, but it takes multiple attempts and failures to get it right.  I have found this to generalize to life as well.  Often I talk to people who are worried about failing at their jobs or schoolwork or relationships and they spend more time thinking and analyzing than doing.  It is the doing and tolerating the doing that is worthwhile.  It may sound simple to say, but doing can be difficult.  You have to face your novice status headlong with the perception of yourself of being capable of the task.

As an example, I play guitar and love this one song.  I can play it a variety of different ways and it can evoke a wide range of emotions.  Recently, I learned a different method to play the same song.

It involved changing the tuning of my guitar and playing all new chords.  Same song, same words, but I suddenly felt like I had never played this song before – despite having played it for literally hours in the past.  I had to come to grips (again) that I still have a lot to learn, even when playing a song that I have loved for years.

This can be the same with life’s transitions as well.  Despite spending almost every waking moment in school, doing homework, and learning from their parents, students still have difficulty adjusting to college.  Parents who have raised their children up from a single cell organism are still baffled sometimes at how to respond to their argumentative teenager.  Instead of seeing the moment, analyzing the moment and judging the moment, taking a look at the process and see it as a change in tuning or chord structure.  Pay attention to those shifts so that you can give yourself grace when you return to novice status.  Become practiced and adept at the shifts instead of inflexibly expecting virtuoso sound the first time around.

-Logan K. Williamson, LPC

 

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