How Long Will It Take For Me To Get Good At Guitar?
This is one of the most common questions I receive when I meet a prospective guitar student for the first time. There are usually two reasons why someone might ask this:
1. Wanting to be great as soon as possible so they can be done learning as soon as possible
2. Concerned about the long-term financial investment
The problem is, if you are asking this question, you are already on the wrong track. Addressing the first issue, learning the guitar is a process, and any serious guitar player will tell you that you never arrive at your final destination. It's a life long journey that must be enjoyed along the way. Of course, you can set milestones and short-term goals throughout, and eventually you will reach your long-term goal, but as soon as you reach your long-term goal, you'll find that there are other things you have discovered along the way you want to now learn or improve upon.
So, a better question to ask might be, “How long do you think it will take me to reach this particular goal?” Your initial goal might be to strum chords quickly and in time. Or it may be to perform a convincing guitar solo in front of an audience. Whatever your initial goal is, it is good to set a deadline and checkpoints along the way with the assistance of a professional guitar instructor. However, just know that the more you learn, the more you'll realize that there's a whole lot more to learn that you were totally unaware of in the beginning!
Regarding the second point, to become successful at anything in life typically requires a significant financial investment. If you want to become a good businessman, you either go to school for business or find a good business mentor, which is generally not free. To become a professional athlete, you will have to hire trainers and coaches outside of school. To become a great guitarist, you need the help of a professional guitar instructor (if you want to learn faster and save time and avoid bad habits and enjoy the process more). So if you're serious about becoming great at guitar, budget accordingly and be ready to invest time and money over the long-term.
So when you go to sign up for guitar lessons, as long as you know you have found a professionally trained guitar teacher (which is rare) who actually cares about you and wants to help you reach your long-term goals, trust that they know what is best for you, no matter how long it takes and no matter if you think what they want you to work on is a waste of time. Trust your teacher and enjoy the process!
About the Author:
Eric Bourassa is a guitar addict and loves helping guitar players during their lessons at his Fort Worth, Texas guitar school. He loves long guitar solos on the beach and romantic evenings of guitar shredding. He loves enjoying the process of always improving one’s guitar skills.