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Motivation

They say, just think of how good it'll feel when you've done it.

Or use treats to incentivize yourself. Create external motivation.

Just like you tell a kid that they'll get candy for doing their homework (I don't have kids, but I imagine you shouldn't do that. You'll have them with caries before you know it)

It'd be a lie to say I don't struggle with motivation.

Not everything in life is fun. Actually, a lot of things aren't.

Take cleaning the windows or writing press releases.

Still, we all know deep down that consistency beats sudden bursts of motivation over the long haul.

We all know that New Year's people are highly motivated to become their new selves (wasn't the old one good enough, and what is it with making yourself a project these days anyway?!).

Usually, 2 months in, most have lost the drive.

Maybe motivation is like happiness. Not meant to last.

Even happiness scientists have figured that they shouldn't score people's life happiness but use terms like "satisfaction" or "well-being."

The equivalent for that to motivation might just be, unsexy as it is, discipline.

It's trendy to be undisciplined.

Mindless scrolling. Excessive drinking. Instant gratification. Running after the next trendy thing. Overconsumption. Narcissism. Debt. Binge watching.

People sometimes compliment me for reading so many books. Or for writing so much. Or for managing to play the guitar or for going on daily walks.

It's all discipline. I'm afraid.

No magic motivation.

Even the guitar, as Segovia once said, is a difficult mistress. Sometimes, things run smoothly, and other days, you feel your fingers are like claws unable to produce a nice sound.

And that's when you still need to keep going. Most of getting to the point of playing something nicely is not fun. It's repeating the same bars you struggle with, trying different fingering, and playing slow af.

Getting into the flow, that much-wanted state where time doesn't matter, that only comes after that.

Pretty sure this applies beyond mastering instruments.

I don't think I'm special for it. The only difference is I forced myself to do it long enough.

Eventually, you develop that sense that you are a person capable of discipline.

That's all. Anyone can do it.

Progress isn't linear. It helps to keep that in mind.


This, too, is an exercise in discipline for me.

Who knows, we might reach mastery eventually.

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