Optimize Your Guitar Practice Space
You want to create your perfect learning and practice space. Your environment has a huge effect on your productivity. Things like the room temperature, outside noise, and lighting all affect motivation, workflow or energy levels. Because of that: your space directly affects your productivity and success.
One of the interesting things I learned when my wife and I bought our house, is that your study space could actually be too big, which can hurt your progress.
I never would have guessed that a possibility, till we bought our home.
Here’s an example to clarify this point.
When I lived in Atwater Village in Los Angeles, I had a huge teaching studio built out in the garage. This was in a three-story house. The garage took up 1/3rd of the house.
I absolutely loved it. I had all my guitar and teaching, psychology, and spirituality books all right there. In addition to walls full of books; I also had all my CDs, concert DVDs, and a vast amount of amps, and musical equipment all around me.
Then my wife and I bought our house in Santa Clarita.
We decided that the room that the previous owners were using as a downstairs bedroom, would be the perfect room in the house to turn into my professional music teaching, recording, and practice studio.
There was nothing but benefits. That room has hardwood floors, it’s downstairs so clients or students don’t have to walk stairs, and it has a bathroom right nextdoor to my studio.
However: that room is about 1/5th the size of the studio I had in the house we rented in Atwater Village.
That initially felt like I’d have to make huge compromises.
I spent a couple of weeks trying to figure out how to make it work. It seemed like I’d have to make a lot of sacrifices to be able to run the business from this much smaller space.
Ultimately, as I came to realize after I had been working (teaching, recording, practicing,…) in my new studio for a couple of months: its smaller space was a blessing in disguise.
I started noticing something very strange.
My productivity somehow, miraculously, appeared to have gotten better. One thing I’ve heard mention quite often from friends and acquaintances in the past is how “focused I am”, or “how much I get done”, or “how effective I am”.
Those traits they used to compliment me on suddenly seemed to multiply in my new space.
I didn’t realize, at the time when I was trying to get set up in my smaller studio, how much of a good thing this more compact space would turn out to be.
For one: it led to me having to make hard choices about what could go in the studio and what I didn’t have space for.
As a result: I am now surrounded by the most essential things I need the most for my teaching business, music goals, and career. Everything else is out.
No longer having the distraction of possessions around me that don’t contribute to my goals or success, appeared to have a significant positive effect on my productivity. Everything is also closer by, which saves me time in getting to things I need.
In the prior huge studio, I didn’t fully realize it at the time, but there was a lot of “wasted space”. Sure that studio had a certain openness, but I couldn’t enjoy that openness because the big open space was located behind my back from where I was sitting.
- Do I really need my whole guitar collection in my studio? Wouldn’t I get higher quality practice out of my time if I only kept my best electric and my best acoustic in my practice room?
- Do I really need 7 guitar picks on my desk?
- Do I really need to be surrounded by 3 amps?
- Why are there 3 capos on my desk?
- Could I keep the vast collection of spare cables in the garage instead of cluttering up my studio with those cables?
This leads to the first rule of getting your study space well-organized: you don’t have to spend any time organizing what you don’t have. The more possessions you have, the more distractions you have.
Only acquire or surround yourself with what adds functionality to the purpose of that space. I’m very big on the idea of maximizing the intended use of any given room.
As an example: I don’t hold books in my workout space. The only things I have in my workout room are weights, workout machines, and anything else I need to maximize my workouts: a burned workout CD with songs that hype me up and gives me energy, a poster on the wall of a thin, sharp-looking musician live on stage, whose sharp physical looks and charisma motivate me to push myself harder in my workouts so I can look that thin too.
I don’t have anything else in that space. In my bedroom, I don’t have a TV, or phone, or anything that doesn’t contribute to what a bedroom is intended for: sleep, rest, and rejuvenation. You can bring a book with you to bed to relax your mind before catching sleep, but you probably wouldn’t want a bookshelf in your bedroom.
I don’t have a billion bottles and lotions I don’t use or barely use in my bathroom. I only hold what I need in that room.
Try it out: get your own dedicated guitar learning dojo in your house, and only put in that room what is going to make you a better guitarist and what you will actually use all the time towards your guitar learning goals. Don’t bring anything else in that room!
You might see a drastic acceleration in your musical growth and practice results.
Hit me up anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions, or if you would like to book a lesson.
These free lessons are cool, but you will never experience the progress, joy, and results that my students experience in lessons when you’re learning by yourself from blogs and videos.
That is why people take lessons: way better results and progress, much more complete information, exposed to way more creative ideas than you can get from a blog or YouTube video.
There is only so much that self-study can accomplish.
If you want to see amazing results and progress in your guitar playing, buy your first lesson here and get started ASAP.
You’ll impress your friends and loved ones in no time with your guitar playing!
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