The Practice Journal Blog.


Start small, win BIG.

May 03, 2017 Brett Yang

Start small, win BIG.

Start small…win big. Have you ever had an epic goal you wanted to achieve but never managed to make it happen?  I was always good about aiming really high, and while this felt great in the moment, I could never get it to actually happen. My lack of discipline and other distractions kept getting in the way…or so I thought. One evening some years ago I decided I wanted to learn all 24 Paganini caprices in the next 24 months. I was so excited, fantasising about the results, that I believed nothing could stop me, not realising that I was...


Dealing with Crippling Self-Doubt

January 30, 2017 Eddy Chen

Dealing with Crippling Self-Doubt

Am I good enough? There’s no way I could ever play like that! Why can’t I just get this right!? These thoughts musicians like myself face all the time. What separates the best from the mediocre is the ability to practice calmly in spite of these emotions. In The Practice Journal, violin pedagogue Dr. Robin Wilson offers some advice: “Patience and persistence is the greatest virtue,” he said. “Frustration, on the other hand, can cause excess muscle tension, limit focus and generally lessen tonal quality.” This advice is echoed by Japanese pedagogue Dr. Suzuki: “Don’t rush, but don’t rest; Patience...