Before signing up for music lessons, every parent wonders whether their child will stick at it or not. Will they be a success, or will they fail or quit? They want their child develop their lives with music and art, but know children have a habit of quitting hobbies. They want this for their child because they know that music lessons can be a tremendous benefit to the development of a young mind. They realize that through music lessons a child’s perception of life changes. They become more attuned to their surroundings, more empathetic and more inquisitive of the world around them. Parents want their child to succeed in music, so that they have a greater chance of succeeding in the wider world.
Why do some students who follow the advice of their teachers, and stick to their daily practice routines, still manage to fail, or quit from frustration, while others make significant progress following the same exact same instruction?
We all know the cliche; “practice makes perfect”. And for the most part, it is true. The greater time spent at a piano, the greater the progress you will make. But practicing time is not the only requirement for long-term success, even in children of the highest ability and aptitude.
Imagine finding the perfect teacher for your child. You hire them immediately and you and your child follow their instructions to the letter, incorporating theory into lessons including singing, and analyzing each piece of music. Your child excels. They perform at festivals and concerts, and win some competitions. Then, all of a sudden, after only a handful of successful years, your child decides that they want to quit.
What do you do? This is a difficult scenario that many parents find themselves in. You have invested a lot of time and money into this pursuit. Do you sacrifice it all, sell the piano, and move on. Or do you push them harder, even though they claim to no longer have a passion for it? You know they will regret quitting, but how can you explain that to a child who has made up their mind?
What is the solution? While many parents find it hard to say no, you have to do what is best for your child’s future, and their development into adulthood. Do you want your child to resent you for letting them quit? Or do you want them to thank you for helping them achieve the greatest of successes, even when times were hard? It is an easy choice to make. And one that will build the character of your child. Saying “no” to quitting habits now, will form a bedrock of determination that will benefit your child for the rest of their lives.
It is these quitting habits that causes the light of the brightest of students to sputter out and extinguish before they ever had a chance to illuminate the world. Saying “yes” to the positive habit of committing to and completing a task, even in the face of adversary, is one that will not only change the life of your child, but will change your own life too. It is a small step towards success. But all great achievements start with small steps.
Growing to be able to play a flawless Rachmaninoff piano concerto begins with ear training exercises, and repeated scales for hours on end until; “impressive quality” is achieved. The same notion applies to all musical study, and all the life in general – take small steps to success and continue learning no matter how hard it seems!
Do not Quit!