Why Is Guitar So Hard To Learn?

So you’ve decided to learn to play guitar. You excitedly buy your first guitar. You eagerly try some basic chords…and it sounds awful! Your fingers ache, and nothing rings out right. “Why is guitar so hard?!” you ask, frustrated.

Well my friend, you’ve come to the right place! The guitar has one of the steepest learning curves of any instrument to learn. But with the right help, perspective, and practice plan, you can push through and be able to play songs sooner than you think!

Getting Started on Guitar: Learn To Play! 

Most beginner guitar players go through distinct beginning stages when they first learn how to play. First and hardest? Finger pain misery! Developing hard skin pads to press down steel strings digs in without finger whining takes some time!

You also gotta build hand strength and muscle memory. Then learn open chord shapes and how to transition smoothly between them. Barre chord flexibility gymnastics are killer, too, for beginners’ hands and brains! Rhythm strumming, music theory, and learning the fretboard notes – all require effort upfront. But you can do it!

Open Chords: Why Are They So Hard At First?!

Whether they’re G, C, D, E or A shape, beginner struggles with open guitar chords and progressions are real! Fretting all six strings without accidentally muting feels impossible some days. Your fingers lack dexterity and hand strength. It’s frustrating!

Sure, callouses take weeks to build. But focus on the accuracy of notes first before speed or rhythm embellishments. Isolate problem string buzzes. Alternate fingering patterns that ache less but make shapes clearer. Chip away slowly with targeted repetition drills first, speed later. You’ll get it!

Switching Between Chords Smoothly: My Nightmare!

Making chord changes fluidly also tops the complaint charts for rookie guitarists. Our hands haven’t built up muscle memory years into playing yet. And dividing attention between fretting and strumming multiplies difficulty.

What helps? Playing along to a metronome starting SLOW. Gradually increase the tempo on changes you nail perfectly. Then, mix up sequences like G-C-A-D, both ascending and descending. Isolate 2-chord transitions that trip you up most. Drill them perfectly before incorporating into full songs. It WILL click over time. Stick with it!

Holding Down Multiple Strings with One Finger?!

Once you’ve conquered your basic open cowboy chords somewhat comfortably, the infamous BARRE chords lurk around the corner. And this new technique requiring you to press down multiple strings with a single finger wiggle tests your dedication!

But barre chords on electric guitar especially can be tamed with light tough. Don’t death grip! Just enough pressure frets notes clearly. And start with partial shapes at lower frets first. In time, your hands stretch more, enabling full F, B and Bb barres up the fretboard!

Strumming While Fretting Challenges Coordination 

Few beginners can cleanly strum accurate rhythms WHILE simultaneously pressing down chord shapes correctly. What gives? It divides already limited attention between two distinctly difficult tasks initially. So how can we train the two hands to cooperate?

One hack: practice fretting shapes WITHOUT strumming first. Then add very basic down strums slowly. Incrementally mix in up strums. Switch between only two shapes first before incorporating fuller songs. It WILL start feeling second nature in time!  

Scales, Chords and Theory? My Worst Nightmare! 

Learning associated theory alongside guitar can overwhelm beginners if you don’t come from a musical background. How do scales, chords and harmony all mathematically fit within keys? How will I memorize this giant instrument fretboard quickly? Tablature, chord charts, rhythm notation can look like greek initially!

Start micro here. Understand how scales build and break apart into individual notes. Learn the major scale, then connect major chord qualities visually on the guitar. Rinse and repeat the process for minor and other shapes. Little digestible theory chunks at your skill level relieve tension to accelerate actual playing.

Sore Fingertips Are Normal! Embrace Some Pain!

Every beginner’s worst fear? Finger pain and soreness from pressing down unforgiving steel strings for extended practice! Yes, initially developing adequate calluses on fingertips and joints strains our unworked hands. Some discomfort comes part and parcel, though, if you wanna play guitar long-term!

Building flexibility through slight suffering pays off. So treat early soreness growing as a badge of honor. Much like building muscles at the gym, play “through the burn” with proper rest intervals. Consistency in developing those permanent guitar calluses and dexterity persistently make playing effortless later. No pain no gain!

Why Can’t My Hands Play What My Brain Hears?! 

A less discussed but equally real challenge among aspiring guitarists? Getting your playing abilities to catch up with your mental musical creativity! You HEAR these beautiful chord sequences, searing solos and emotional vocal melodies clearly internally. Yet our hands haven’t developed technical skills through muscle memory to execute them outwards yet.

The disconnect leaves us creatively paralyzed and frustrated. But have hope! Consistency, effective memorization/visualization tactics, and immersing in our favorite music synchronize brains and hands in time if patience prevails!

Playing Fast is Overrated! Nail Precision First

Whether struggling to pick individual notes up to speed cleanly or transition between open chords fluidly without buzzing, aspiring guitarists often self-sabotage chasing, playing fast too early before the underlying technique is solidified.

However, it’s far more impressive sounding to play a handful of chords or notes PERFECTLY with precision in time than lots of sloppy, muffled chords quickly. So check that need for speed egos! Revisit graduation concepts frequently for consolidation before attempting more advanced challenges. Nailing quality execution first, then velocity second, keeps motivation and morale high.

Master slow, speed comes!

Why Learning Guitar Stays Hard: Life Demands Our Time!

Even once past beginner struggles as intermediate players, finding time for the deliberate, focused practice itself becomes an uphill battle amongst life’s other demands. Our free time to invest in playing diminishes compared to passionate, wide-eyed newcomers. But without consistency pushing technical abilities forward, we stagnate and backslide losing hard-fought callouses literally and metaphorically.

How do you make those practice minutes count within busy lifestyles, then? Apply pro frameworks used by famous musicians! Isolate problem areas. Use speed burst intervals. Set micro goals each session. Chip away daily, even if it’s just 15 minutes. Train smarter, not arbitrarily longer! 

Gear Matters: Don’t Let Crappy Equipment Hinder You!

Beyond just the demands of real life, sometimes our budget equipment itself sabotages learning progress unknowingly for beginners. Inconsistent intonation up the neck can make simple melodies impossible to play in key. Too high action with bad fretwork causes buzzes and muting no matter how accurately you fret notes.

Tuning pegs that won’t hold tune kill motivation quickly, trying to play along with professional recordings, too! But don’t let this gear discourage you early on. As finances allow, try many entry-level instruments first, recognizing their imperfections. Set money aside to step into at least mid-grade equipment once technique fundamentals are cemented.  

Your sound and playability will thank you, lengthening enjoyment and practice excitement!

Getting Over Envy Helps You Appreciate Your Own Journey

Another internal battle for many learning guitarists is fighting comparisons against other guitar players. With endless inspirational videos and gear demos at our fingertips online today, it’s easy to get disheartened wondering, “Why can’t I play like THAT yet?!” But redirect this unhealthy gear envy into fuel for hungrier practice through appreciation instead!

Recognize famous guitarists stand on the shoulders of influences teaching them before getting lucrative record deals or endorsement gear. Embrace your personal musical journey, wherever it may lead. Measure personal growth against past versions of yourself, not internet virtuosos.

Incremental daily successes, however slight, still compose your unique story worth celebrating.

Learning Guitar Stays Hard…If You Give Up Early!

Understandably, between physical pain thresholds, coordinating two hands not cooperating yet, and general music theory confusion, motivation abandoning guitar cries loudly for beginners at times! But recognize that desired guitar skills development rides upon persistence through such dips, seeing just past struggle’s horizon.

Maintaining realistic expectations on elongated timelines legitimately demands mastery here. Then, chip away daily using proven memorization tricks, even on 20-minute micro sessions. Plateaus always eventually give way to breakthroughs if grit lasts.

So cut impatience! Endure a bit longer before assuming talent is lacking! Your musical dreams manifest closer daily.

Applying Proven Practice Frameworks Gets You Results!  

Not all practice garners equivalent skill development, unfortunately. Merely strumming aimlessly through favorite songs, daily plateaus progress quickly after the initial phase. What accelerates competency faster is applying memorization techniques professionals use!

For tricky chord changes, isolate transitions, giving difficulty. Loop 2-4 measures where you struggle until clean execution sinks in naturally through repetition. Can’t get barres crisp? Break shapes down into partial chord segments, then connect once each solid.

Having isolated problem areas and tackling them incrementally through mindful repetition will have you improving noticeably quicker!

Learn Songs Slightly Beyond Your Current Level

Keep expanding your musical horizons by learning pieces barely above your present abilities. Early on, these may be basic strumming patterns using a few cowboy chords you know decently. Over time, introduce alternate bass notes, flatpicking, and embellished rhythms.

By incrementally increasing complexity, skills stay sharp towards that next breakthrough “win” reinforcing grit. And be sure to revisit favorite motivational songs, often noticing increased competencies! Celebrate by playing over backing instrumentation tracks, too, for fun.

Measure Long-Term Skill Gains In Months 

Compare yourself today against yesterday, not internet virtuosos! Making daily micro gains consistently stacks major transformations over enough time strung together. Changing open chords today smoothly will evolve, adding barres, complex rhythms, and advanced lead techniques – if commitment holds.

But DO realistically track multi-month milestones measuring long-view skill acquisition trajectories to motivate persisting through short-term perceived stalls. Muscle memory and physical dexterity develop gradually despite our instant gratification cultural conditioning.

Master slow first, speed comes in time!

Getting Past Skill Plateaus & Reinvigorating Excitement In Guitar

ALL determined guitarists inevitably encounter periods of stagnated visible progress, loss of momentum, or waning enthusiasm long-term. But how persevering musicians overcome motivational lulls is course correcting training approaches honestly.

Analyze WHY progress stalled. What specifically isn’t working? Self-critique current practice methods’ inefficiencies. Seek fresh inspiration by studying genres outside your comfort zone. Commit towards a purpose larger than oneself.

And if necessary, invest in a few structured guitar lessons from a guitar teacher to diagnose poor technique established unknowingly needing correction from an expert set of eyes! Reapproaching fundamentals from new angles renews intrigue, revitalizing it once more.

Take a Break with Other Musical Instruments

When guitars grow tiresome, explore percussion, piano, singing, violin, harmonica, or other musical outputs, giving creative juice space to recharge. Fundamentally, we commit to playing guitar long-term, seeking fulfilling self-expression.

So when that initial passion wanes under life’s strain, redirecting musicality through alternate instruments realigns perspective positively. Embrace a season playing purely recreational again without pressure to progress. Strum for fun, hum carelessly, tap rhythms freely. Then, revisit the guitar afterward with revived clarity.

Music training provides intrinsically everything beyond the laborious practice itself. 

Add Musical Language Through Basic Music Theory

Sure, reading tabs and watching YouTube tutorials sufficiently teach the mechanical “how-to” behind playing guitar for hobbyists. But complementing this physical technique comprehension with basic music theory accelerates overall musicianship exponentially!

Gradually gain exposure visualizing how scales build and break down intervallically. Connect major and minor chord structures with keys and harmonic roles too. Incorporate timing notation reading strum patterns. The abstract symbols representing musical language upgrade creative communication abilities, translating ideas directly through guitar outputs more freely.

Digest slowly alongside regular guitar training for multiplier effects in the long term.

Learn Efficient Practice Habits From Little Kid Guitar Wizards!

We assume wiser with age, acquiring life’s harsh truths. Yet remarkably, little guitar prodigies with underdeveloped brains and tiny hands often grasp musical concepts we adults overcomplicate for some reason. Observe their carefree posture and hand positioning, holding instruments smaller than their tiny torsos. No tension impeding free-flowing creative expression. They attack play with a beginner’s mind optimism that learned abilities will catch up soon enough.

Minimal past failure haunts pure potential brimming boundlessly. Maybe tap into such youthful resilience ourselves: committing consistent passion while embracing the elongated journey, realizing all so necessary skills incrementally improving daily.

Yes, Learning The Guitar Is Hard … But So Worth It

Through the pain, callouses, coordination struggles, and steep learning curve first starting out, the guitar may tempt quitting occasionally. But recognizing everything deeply rewarding requires equal commitment, traversing growing periods less glamorous by nature.

Consider long-time guitarists still grin foolishly, simply strumming open G to E minor chord changes smoothly after years of conquering once impossible barres, complex chords, and speed walls. Clarity emerges, keeping perspective grounded in each micro lesson, building lifetime capabilities. Mini daily gains persistently stack monumental skill transformation in time.

So breathe deep and embrace your personal journey wherever it leads. The road walks on forever filled with melodic potential if grit persists positively!

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