28. April 2015 · Comments Off on No Excuses · Categories: Ramble

I am writing this as much to myself as to my students and other readers.

Stop. Making. Excuses.

I always miss that note!
I have a bad reed.
I can’t play this.
I’m too busy.
I’m tired.
I have a bad reed.
I don’t like this piece.
I can’t play this.
I always miss that attack.
I have a bad reed.

Yep, I’ve said these.

Truth is, when you say these things out loud you are doing all of us a disservice. First, you are warning your listener (Teacher? Audience? parent? Other listener?) that you aren’t going to be doing your best. I think we usually do that because that way we’ve said it first … as if to ward off any correction from a teacher or disappointment from a listener. Just don’t go there. First off, you might get it right and surprise even yourself. But even more, you have just given yourself permission to do poorly. Why do that? Why set yourself up for failure? I think, sometimes, that my oboe must hear me. I suggest I’m going to miss a note and I miss a note. I suggest I’m going to fail on a passage and … duh! … I fail. Sad, but true.

Just go for it! Do the best you can do at that moment, with that reed. Stop the excuses. Stop the complaining.

Now I will leave you to ponder … and I will go work on my own attitude and negative thoughts!

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