The Playground

The Simply Music blog

New Years & New Resolutions

Found in: Coaching

I think we all have fallen into the trap of setting new year’s resolutions that don’t last a week, especially when it comes to playing & practicing our instruments. I know I definitely have! I personally find it hard to follow through with my good intentions, and couple that with the year that was 2020 so many things in my life fell to the wayside!

One thing that kept me on track last year was accountability, I know this isn’t a huge revelation but for an easily distracted ‘creative type’ like me it was a big thing!

… A little bit about my 2020 revelation!

I was invited to join a songwriting club at the start of last year, by someone I respect and greatly admire, the rules were that a topic would be emailed out to all every Friday and if you didn’t have a song written, and sent to the whole group by the following Thursday midnight you’d be out! Your name would be put at the bottom of the list and you’d have to wait till your turn came back around to be in again, it was strict but I was up for the challenge!!

I didn’t know who else was going to be in song club but after the first week’s email I got to see who else was a part of it … and panic set in!! There were producers, award winning singers & songwriters, and people that (in my opinion) were a whole lot better than me! My first few weeks of song club, pressing send on an email to songclub induced a mild panic and a whole lot of doubt in me!!

Gretta Ziller – links


BUT, I quickly came to realise it wasn’t about writing a smash hit each week, it was about stretching the muscle, creating something, anything, and finishing it! After I realised that I let myself write in styles I hadn’t before, I submitted songs with me clunking away on the piano (I normally play guitar), I wrote about topics I normally wouldn’t have thought to write about, I used my recording software and created drum beats and sent in rough demos rather than iphone scratch recordings, I had so much fun!

Being accountable to submit something weekly, be it good, bad or ugly, was totally and completely freeing!

So in the spirit of my 2020 experience I would like to challenge you to creat your own song club, or practice club!

Do you have friends that play an instrument? Could you send each other a piece of music to learn & record each week, or even write your own music weekly? Or could you find a group of people that want to keep each other accountable with practice? Maybe your teacher, or school or church group could assist with finding a group of people that would be up for the challenge, it could even be your family!

Either way I challenge you to challenge yourself in 2021!

Let us know how you go!


P.S. – If you don’t know where to start here are some blog posts we’ve written on practicing:

10 Tips to Making the Most of Yourself & Your Practice

Make Practice Perfect

Doing Simple Things Well – Part 1

Simple Things Done Well – Pt2