Losing the urge to play

Discussion in 'General Music Discussion' started by InFlames235, Dec 28, 2016.

  1. InFlames235

    InFlames235 SS.org Regular

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    What do you guys do when you run into this? I couldn't be happier with my gear, honestly. I have an amazing amp (JP2C), a couple incredible guitars - one of which are custom & a pedalboard with some pretty inspiring effects. On top of that I have all the gear needed to silently practice or record if I want to.

    The problem is, I just end up looking at all the unused gear in my room more than actually playing it. I'll start playing a video game or watching a movie with the girlfriend before getting the desire to pick up the guitar. If I do pick up the guitar, it's maybe for 30 - 40 minutes and done. I've played since I was 13 years old and my passion seems to be waning a bit. I'm sure I'm not the only one that has run into this - what have you guys done in this situation?
     
  2. endmysuffering

    endmysuffering I'm serious

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    The first thing you could do is try to learn a song or a solo that you deemed impossible.
     
  3. Negav

    Negav SS.org Regular

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    Trade or sell your guitar, get a better one. And do ^^^^^^ trying to learn an 'impossible' song or solo will get you back on track. It happened to me years ago, got a new guitar, got back on track.
     
  4. 7 Strings of Hate

    7 Strings of Hate Mid-Level Asshole Contributor

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    I'v been playing 20 years now. I go through this in waves, but I always come back around after a month or so. I guess you gotta ask yourself what you want out of playing.
     
  5. extendedsolo

    extendedsolo SS.org Regular

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    echoing the sentiment that you have to learn something you previously thought you couldn't. Going back and rehashing stuff you know kills it pretty quick.

    What's always a good way is to have people to play with that are on the same page. Being responsible for new material on a dead line will make you better. Usually this means not playing metal.

    The last thing you should do IMO is buy more or new gear.
     
  6. crankyrayhanky

    crankyrayhanky SS.org Regular

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    ditch the TV, video games, & GF (or at least cut back some, lol!)
    identify some Guitar Goals and do it
     
  7. VBCheeseGrater

    VBCheeseGrater not quite a shredder

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    I go through that too. Sometimes you just gotta stop for awhile -if you lose interest, then go with your gut if you can't find the spark. Do the other things that interest you. 6 months, a year, 2 years later, something will spark your interest again.

    i'm just getting back to really being interested in playing again, and the gear of course, after being over it for a year or so after quitting the band I was in.
     
  8. Eptaceros

    Eptaceros Wayfarer

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    Your gear shouldn't have anything to do with your desire to play, I don't know why you gave us a brief rig rundown. It's okay to not want to play, just set it aside. I've had periods of months, up to almost a year, multiple times where I barely touched my guitar. There's more to life than jammin' on riffs.
     
  9. Mathemagician

    Mathemagician SS.org Regular

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    I went years in my 20's without playing. It wasn't my day job and I had plenty of other hobbies and priorities. I'm am glad I didn't sell any of my gear though. It's like anything else. Doing it all the time gets old. Especially practicing. If you can play 99% of what you find interesting then it's hard to want to sit down with a click.

    That's fine. Put the gear down and do other things. Then come back to it in a few months/whenever. See f things haven't changed. I'll bet you find it a lot more fun after a break.

    I actually do that with video games. I'll play dragon age for 100hrs and then not touch another game for 6 months. It's all about balance, and you're not the first one to have multiple interesting hobbies.
     
  10. Webmaestro

    Webmaestro Ibanez Fanatic

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    This is going to sound weird, but it's a reverse-psychology thing, so hear me out...

    If you don't have the urge to play, then don't. More importantly, don't force yourself to do so. Forcing yourself to do something you're really not wanting to do will just make you resent it; it feels like "work."

    In fact, I'd put your guitars away by putting them all in their cases, then stashing the cases somewhere out of sight... like under the bed, closets, etc.

    Another technique that takes it to the next level is to tell yourself you're not ALLOWED to play guitar for X number of days/weeks. Resist any urges to pick up your axe during this time. Once your alotted timeframe has passed, have at it.

    DON'T SELL YOUR GEAR during this time. You want it there for you when the desire comes back... even if it takes months or years.

    Unless you're trying to nurture a career as a professional musician, in which case playing/practicing regularly may be crucial, then don't force it. Simply quit until the urge comes back.
     
  11. InFlames235

    InFlames235 SS.org Regular

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    I guess I gave the rig rundown because it makes me feel guiltier having nice gear that doesn't get played :noplease:

    Thanks for the recommendations so far, guys! Glad to see I'm not alone in this aspect and I definitely think I can use these recommendations to get back into things more. The one thing I've always wanted to do but never sat down enough to practice was sweep picking. Maybe I can make that a goal to practice 30 mins - hour a day to see if I can get my chops up and learn something I always thought was impossible....
     
  12. Yodel

    Yodel Banned

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    Get out of your room ans start playing in a band, preferably Metallica cover band.
     
  13. BrailleDecibel

    BrailleDecibel Dinkleberg

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    I echo most of the replies in this thread, they are all great ideas. But this one seemed to resonate most with me, as it's something I've never really thought of doing when I go through my own little "meh" stretches. I need to try this sometime when another one comes around, and if none of the original suggestions work for ya, InFlames, I say give this one a shot. :yesway:
     
  14. Ebony

    Ebony Signal purist

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    I think Webmaestro hit the nail on the head.
     
  15. Gram negative

    Gram negative Christopher Horton

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    I say embrace it. A little bit like Webmaestro said.

    Firstly, guitar isnt the ONLY thing I do. It's just the MAIN thing I do. I like Playstation also. I am in the middle of recording right now, and I decided to take three days off. Like a weekend. Because I was burned out. I played some playstation, spent time writing, shot my bow, watched a new DVD with my wife....

    Ill be craving the growl of a power chord in no time. In fact, I kind of want to go play right now.

    But DO NOT go and sell your guitars/amp. You will regret it. It may be a YEAR before you play passionately again, but youll need a guitar to do that!
     
  16. budda

    budda Do not criticize as this Contributor

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    30-40 minutes is more than some guys play in a month. There is no hard and fast rule stating how much you have to play any given instrument in any time frame.

    Pick it up when you want to.
     
  17. extendedsolo

    extendedsolo SS.org Regular

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    What are your long term goals though too? If you are just playing for fun in your bedroom and like jamming to your own songs, it's fine to put it away for a little bit

    Now if you are a gigging musician or have aspirations to be the best you can be, then you have you kinda push through it. Keep playing but focus on something else in your playing for a week. Work on ONE NEW THING.

    I know if I don't have the urge to play then I listen. If I'm trying to get a new "sound" in my ear. A new style of music, a chord I'm trying to master knowing by ear without my instrument. Triad inversions. Chord progressions by just hearing them. It keeps my connection with music and my enjoyment.
     
  18. bhakan

    bhakan SS.org Regular

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    I'll echo the "don't force it" comments. Sometimes you just need a break.

    If you feel your break has gone on too long and you're just lacking the will to play, I'd highly recommend listening to new music and going to shows. Something that always makes me want to play is when I go see a bunch of random local bands I've never heard of. Sometimes they all suck, sometimes there are some fantastic hidden gems, but I always leave thinking "I could definitely do that better" (because I'm a cocky asshole in spite of the fact that I'm not a particularly impressive player) and get home inspired to write.

    If your local scene sucks, just listen to a genre you've never gotten into and really give it an honest shot regardless of your previous opinions of it. A lot of times a new perspective can really make me want to play.
     
  19. endmysuffering

    endmysuffering I'm serious

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  20. ThePIGI King

    ThePIGI King Ibanez Enthusiast

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    I started a new job recently, and it is much more demanding on me both time wise and physically. Since starting, I've hardly touched my guitars at all. Today, I sat down and turned some tunes on to do the dishes to. I found myself thinking "That's a sick riff. I bet I could figure that out by ear". And what do you know? I picked my guitar up, learned that riff, and then I wrote three little things of my own today.

    Sometimes you just need to hear something that sparks your musical curiosity. Listen to some new bands, or listen to some bands you love that really inspire you.
     

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