I Gave Up on Guitar 3 Times…and How That’s Relevant to Your Work

Maybe one of the hardest things i’ve done is learn how to play the guitar. It didn’t come naturally for me, so i had to fight at it a bit.

I learned on my own. I figured it all out myself.

There were times when i got so frustrated with myself. I couldn’t bend my fingers the right way or stretch them far enough. There were even times when they bled from the pressure of the string digging into the skin.

I gave up on playing guitar 3 times…or maybe 4 that year. But there would always be a moment where i would get slightly inspired, or i’d see my guitar lying over in the corner, walk over and pick it, and strum a few chords.

I was thinking the other day…maybe some of us feel the same with our blogs, or businesses, or ministries. Maybe we are frustrated and irritated. Maybe we feel ashamed or embarrassed by their small beginnings or reallyyyy slow starts. Maybe you don’t have the time you want to put into it. Maybe you show up some days and feel completely inadequate.

Honestly, that’s where i find myself 70% of the time.

But then i think about how it was playing guitar.

I can’t tell you when i “became a guitar player.” There was never some great, defining moment for me.

Actually, it was a pretty pathetic process.

If you would’ve seen me or – even worse – heard me play back then, you would have never thought of me as a musician.

But i repeatedly showed up and did a little bit at a time. I slowly developed calluses on my fingers, a natural resistance to the irritation and frustration. Eventually, the strings stopped buzzing, and beautiful melodies started to ring out from the movement of my hands.

Through this [pathetic] process, i was able to transform myself into what i had envisioned from the beginning — a musician.

Preaching to the choir

Recently i was thinking back on those moments of frustration and asked myself a few questions:

(1) what if i would have thrown my guitar “out with the bath water”?
(2) how would my life be different if i didn’t learn that skill?
(3) what opportunities have been possible because i didn’t give up?

Starting something new is always difficult. But you never know what opportunities can spring out from that one decision you made to…. just keep going.

Are you struggling with something today? Maybe you are counting the costs to see if the work you are putting in for your business or ministry is ever going produce a profit or bear fruit.

Feeling overwhelmed? Hang in there. Keep working hard. You may be creating opportunities for your future.

I’m with you.

Adam