I'm working on motivation and goal setting (in general as well as toward music).
I'm just popping around some forums where I have a handle (#GenXJargonWarning), and some FB groups, and asking anyone interested in sharing to toss out ideas/tips for goal setting. Whether they're things you actually do or just ideas you have - there is no bad information you can give me if it's sincere.
If you see me doing this elsewhere, I apologize in advance - but I'm eager as it's the 2 week break between Spring and Summer session and I can just play with my instruments and indulge in self-improvement/self-care splendor until June (and even after that, summer session is light). I'd really like to start making some progress this summer while things are light - and trying some changes in this vacation seems like a good opportunity.
Have a look at Reinhard Engels' ideas...he started out mainly focusing on the diet he invented and lost 40 lbs, but he realized his ability to set and accomplish goals was behind it and he made a whole thing called "Everyday Systems." I used to do an amateur show on a local amateur radio station with my daughter and son-in-law, and he's one of the people we interviewed...I told him I thought he was a modern day Benjamin Franklin.
Goals come in two sizes .... short and long term . To be workable they need to be specific. Learn a tune, jam in a key, enter a contest by a certain date. They also need to be attainable at the goal setters level. I am going to learn how to play like Kenny Baker by next year so I can gig Carnegie Hall my be setting the bar a bit high. It would for me anyway. So write them down and post them in your practice space where you can read them and start each practice using them as a mantra ..... I will .... play on! R/
I don't think we often evaluate our playing skills effectively. Before I set a goal for a specific area, say something like bowing technique, having a more experienced qualified player evaluate my abilities and identify the major problem works. Then, practice techniques designed to correct that problem.
Some time back, I realized the time I spent practicing had gotten out of hand. I spent more time practicing techniques than playing music. I stopped doing that. Wherever I could, I combined multiple exercises into a single exercise.
I said a smart thing to my daughter a few days ago, so I thought I'd better write it down quick: Sometimes the way I motivate myself to start, is to motivate myself to stop.
I said this, actually, related to making jewelry, which is the business I'm in when I'm not teaching (on hold for this year) or fiddling. Sometimes I just know that once I start, my whole day will be gone - and even though that can be rewarding, sometimes it seems like a heavy lift. If I set myself a concrete goal of stopping after a half hour, or an hour, or whatever, I learn to trust that I have control over the process. I still have free will and can extend the time (I often do) but I think just it helps me value my time and effort a little more.
I never worry about motivating myself to fiddle, because that's what I'm doing when I'm delaying everything else.
I followed some of the suggestions Amazon gave me after ordering The Practice of Practice and it's not only helping with my music, but it gave me some ideas for my dissertation (on math anxiety in chem education). Cozying up to the psych department to see if they'll let an education student use their MRIs is probably not going to get me anywhere, but at least it will give me some dinner conversation once conferences are a thing again.
Oh and now I can call my driving-aimlessly anxiety management technique "part of my music" because I made a YouTube playlist of things I'm currently working on and the musicians I'd like to sound like on my way to sounding like myself.