All entries for Tuesday 10 June 2014

June 10, 2014

Skills capability. Not everyone can play the piano.

We had a discussion in class yesterday that got me thinking. It stemmed from skills capabilty and what people want to do in life. The notion was that nothing is impossible provided you have that mindset and not a deafeatist attitude. This seems failry obvious. For example, if you play a sport such as football and get the ball and think, "I won't score", you won't. If you have the mindset that you will score, then you have more of a chance than the other person who thinks they won't. However, I remember yesterday there was a discussion whereby people stated they wanted to play the piano, and ultimately wanted to perform live for people at a symphony. However, for me, just having this attitude of "I will play that show and be a virtuouso on the piano" doesn't mean anyone with that attitude will achieve it.


Why? There are two things as important as having the mindset. One is talent. I play the guitar, bass, drums and sing. Music is the one thing I feel I am slightly talented at. I can hear a song and figure out the notes in my head, I understand the chord progression and know what melodies will fit. I could pick a guitar up and easily play any song there and then. I know this sounds big headed, but to me this has always come easily. I am in several bands and can learn songs in minutes but the ease I pick things up isn't always the case for others. Exhibit A. One of my bands I am the lead guitarist, whilst my friend plays rhythym guitar. Whenever I write a song, I have to 'tab' out the song so he can play it (he can't figure it out by ear basically) and no matter how much he listens to it, he can not play it from ear. When we have practices sometimes he plays parts of the song in the wrong key and doesn't realise. I think he suffers from tone deafness, where he struggles to differentiate whether something is correct. No matter how much he practices, and regardless of his mindset of whether he wants to just pick an instrument up and just play any song, he can't. As important as the mindset is, talent is also important. Take Cristiano Ronaldo. He is for me the best footballer in the world. I want to take freekicks like he does, I have spent countless hours practising but I am awful in comparison. I don't have the underlying talent required. My friend who is tonedeaf is brilliant at designing logos, images and promoting our music, something that I find exrtemely challenging and difficult to do. Even though I wish to be as good as he is, and regardless that I have spent countless hours trying to improve, I just struggle to do it.


Therefore talent for me is also important. Equally important is that a person enjoys what they do. I know people who want to be the next Jimmy Hendrix, who go and buy a guitar but end up not enjoying playing the instrument and stop playing. Perhaps I was like this when practising free kicks. After countless hours of practicing I realised that I wasnt very good and that I wasn't enjoying myself so I gave up. It's like intrinsic motivation, satisfaction needs to come from what you're doing. I've lost track of the times I've heard people say on this course that I am starting my dissertation tomorrow, finishing the PMA or writing x amount of words a day for the project but do nothing. I have lost count of people I know who want to be fit and healthy by exercising and dieting but don't start or continue. If you don't enjoy something, you will struggle to achieve your goals. Obviously if you're good at something you will more than likely enjoy doing it more than someone who is rubbish at doing something, but whilst learning to do something you need to be able to enjoy it enough to persevere and become good at it provided you have enough underlying talent.


So for me not everyone can play the piano, irrespective of how badly you want to. As important as the mindset is, you need some talent for certain things, and also need to enjoy what you do. I love sports like football but I am awful, I have the least amount of talent available. I couldn't be a professional footballer irrespective of how much I wanted it, becaue I lack the natural ability to be one.


June 2014

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