Monday, July 14, 2014

What Is Your "Why"?

My guitar teacher gave me a blues lick that I have been practicing at half speed for two weeks. It is repetitive, difficult work, the opposite of a good time.

I seriously have to set my timer for 15 minute intervals and drive through the boredom. Finally, I got to the point where I just couldn't find the will power to pick my guitar back again and play that stupid lick. So, instead of gnashing my teeth through another 15 minute session, I took a drive to a taco joint in Echo Park and did some thinking while I sipped on an almond milk horchata in the sunshine. Mmmmm. Much better.

I thought to myself "I could simply stop playing. I don't have to keep going through the motions. Nobody is making me. (Well, I guess my guitar teacher is, but I can always quit.)" Then I thought a little deeper about it. "Why am I practicing this boring material? Why is it important for me to keep doing this?" And that thought made me cast my net even wider, and I asked "Why do I play music in general? Why is it so important?" 

Since I wasn't making any headway with these questions, I decided to think back on my life even further. Maybe that would help clear things up for me. Why did I start playing music? I started playing music because I wanted to be signed by a label. Any label. That was the holy grail of my music career as far as I was concerned. Then we were signed by a label, and then another label, and my reason for playing music quickly changed. 

I slurped up the last of my drink through melting ice cubes. While I concentrated on using my straw as a single chopstick to reach all those delicious, crunchy ice cubes, my why hit me on the top of the head just like that apple must have hit Newton.  

O.k. so the moment wasn't as important as discovering gravity, but it was still a huge deal to me. I remembered the reason why I practice every day, why I force my fingers against their will into such awkward positions, why I sit through scales and and exercises. I remembered the whole point of it all.

Now, that I was armed with my "why" I was prepared to get back to that scale. I was even excited to get back to that scale. Heck, I'll practice it in 30 minute intervals! What now!

Do you want to know what my why is? I discovered I don't have just one why. I've got millions and millions of whys. I've circled 8 of them in the photo below for you to see. 

Remember you "why", because your path isn't always going to be easy, in fact, most of it will probably be a struggle if you are challenging yourself enough.

Honestly, Meg


  1. When I saw you guys play at the Troubadour in Los Angeles, I had the biggest smile on my face. Afterwards I had a post concert high like no other for days and even weeks... Heck I still think about it from time to time and I begin to smile or my heart starts beating faster from everything that happened that night (being called up on stage was a big shock). Been a fan for years by that point, but never had the opportunity to see a live show up until that point so I traveled over 6 hours. That evening is one I'll remember for the REST OF MY LIFE!

    Thanks Meg

  2. You circled my smile!!!! I'm the guy above your guitar! That was an amazing show, I met tons of new friends because of you and Dia. I wish I could go back, thank you for everything!

  3. Replies
    1. Chicago at the Subterranean!!! Woot, amazing night :)

  4. I saw this picture and thought "I was at this show!!!" How cool :) I was upstairs, but I met you afterwards and definitely had a huge smile on my face :)