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Originally Posted by jeffcat
Think about why people eat so much Instant noodles. It's great but not super good. The advantage of instant noodle is the fact that It's got an extremely high Reward to Effort ratio. It's not as good as a 3 course Lobster dinner, but it only takes 5 minutes to make, and you wash 1 bowl and one fork.
Instant Noodles that come in plastic packets are far too slow: you need a stove, you have to cook, and there's too much to wash up.

You want Pot Noodles, into which you just pour boiling water. Wait four minutes, stir, and Bob's your uncle (or not, as the case may be):

https://www.potnoodle.com/products/pot-noodle.html

Washing a bowl takes far too much effort. Eat it straight from the pot, using whatever you've got - teaspoon, chopsticks, fork, your fingers (- wait until noodles are cool enough) etc. I just use a specially-designed (for Pot Noodles) Swiss-made titanium Spork. I survived happily on Pot Noodles (bolstered, of course, with a multi-vitamin & mineral supplement) in my mis-spent youth while at university, juggling between piano practicing in the Music Department during all my spare time, while trying to pass my actual course exams with the least effort.

These days, of course, I make noodles and pasta from scratch, with flour and eggs. (Actually, that takes far too much effort, so I just microwave the eggs instead, for Instant Microwave Eggs.)


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
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Originally Posted by bennevis
Instant Noodles that come in plastic packets are far too slow: you need a stove, you have to cook, and there's too much to wash up.
You want Pot Noodles, into which you just pour boiling water. Wait four minutes, stir, and Bob's your uncle (or not, as the case may be):

For a while I just bought saltines and drank orange juice. Soylent = Future.

Last edited by jeffcat; 10/03/20 11:21 AM.
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Originally Posted by jeffcat
Soylent = Future.
That's reminded me of the movie Soylent Green:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soylent_Green

Well worth watching.......(and beware of where the protein in your processed food comes from smirk ).


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
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Originally Posted by Animisha
When you read this, now! Get up from whereever you are, go to your piano and play a C major scale. Try to play it as nicely as if you play a melody. smile


Best advice yet! It took a couple of days before I saw this post. But once I did, I went over and did a two octave C-scale, hands together.


“Nobody wants to show you the hours and hours of becoming. They'd rather show the highlight of what they've become.”
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Originally Posted by Josh1770
Originally Posted by Animisha
When you read this, now! Get up from whereever you are, go to your piano and play a C major scale. Try to play it as nicely as if you play a melody. smile


Best advice yet! It took a couple of days before I saw this post. But once I did, I went over and did a two octave C-scale, hands together.

Great job! The hardest part is over. You have started. Now follow up. Yes now! Get your first piano book, find the first piece in your book, sit at your piano and play it. smile


Playing the piano is learning to create, playfully and deeply seriously, our own music in the world.
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Originally Posted by jeffcat
In most cases, if you can read the entire piece, 1 hand at a time @ 1/4 tempo. That's more than good enough to stay warm. But so few new guys even get to that point.


Well, in most cases I can play a piece at 1/4 tempo, one hand at a time. But that's not exactly enjoyable music. If I could get to a modest 3/4 tempo with both hands together, I would be in better shape. But I find that there is a huge wall I am never climbing over with anything I play.

And I don't think of myself as new to the piano. - which is another problem in addition to the one above.



Originally Posted by jeffcat
The majority of new initiates will practice and repeat short segments of music, while that's good as a coordination and freedom exercise, it doesn't attack reading, and reading is the most stressful and critical hurdle.

There's no secret psychology, the problem is always the reading, it will never go away, attack attack attack. To be clear I'm not talking about sight reading. You don't have to get THAT-good, though of course eventually it will happen if you keep at it. You do need to get alot faster than you are now. The STRESS you're trying to avoid isn't playing the piano, that's easy, it's reading/ brain use that you're avoiding.

The human behavior system is designed to Conserve energy/effort. The brain uses 30% of the body's sugar supply. That's a major expense, and it increases when you push higher functions.

Music is a good thing, but it's not so rewarding that it can cross the motivational threshold VERSUS lower hanging fruits easier to pick like, Eating Chocolate, Watching movies,.

I read some books and watched a video recently on forming small habits and similar ideas - Floss just one tooth, do one pushup, place musical instrument in the living room where the tv is so it is more accessible and just hit one note. The idea is that once you get started you are already in position to keep going. And even if you don't, you will add on to the the tiny action every day. The problem is that we aren't avoiding these actions because they are time consuming - if I floss one tooth I may as well keep going...it's all of the actions required to lead up to what you really want to do - finding the floss, tearing off the right sized piece (what did the dentist say again???), wrapping it correctly around my fingers, sticking my fist in my mouth and trying not to gag, having to reclean my mouth after flossing, - there is a lot of mental effort attached to the first action, associations with painful times (dental cleanings), with no reward. I would rather just jump into my warm bed. It's the same for practicing - I put a simple practice keyboard in my tv room, but just turning on the tv will give instant rewards. Turning on my keyboard represents past failures, no rewards, requires an effort to figure out what I should do at that moment, and all of the stress I am facing.

BTW - the majority of my practice is on an upright full sized digital piano. But right now there is a lot of stress and past failure attached to that thing.

-Josh


“Nobody wants to show you the hours and hours of becoming. They'd rather show the highlight of what they've become.”
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Originally Posted by Animisha
Great job! The hardest part is over. You have started. Now follow up. Yes now! Get your first piano book, find the first piece in your book, sit at your piano and play it. smile

Thank you for cheering me on. I will report back, hopefully with good news.

-Josh


“Nobody wants to show you the hours and hours of becoming. They'd rather show the highlight of what they've become.”
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Originally Posted by Josh1770
I put a simple practice keyboard in my tv room, but just turning on the tv will give instant rewards. Turning on my keyboard represents past failures, no rewards, requires an effort to figure out what I should do at that moment, and all of the stress I am facing.

-Josh

If you're trying to program yourself quickly, you could try stronger stuff.

Starting 8 PM, play piano for 2 hours, FORCE yourself to read sheetmusic the entire 2 hours. @ 10pm have a small glass of wine, or smoke a cigarette. 11pm go to bed. The less that happens after 10, the more rapid the programming.

This obviously won't work if you decide to take shortcuts and drink/smoke without playing.

Last edited by jeffcat; 10/05/20 01:36 PM.
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Originally Posted by jeffcat
If you're trying to program yourself quickly, you could try stronger stuff.

Starting 8 PM, play piano for 2 hours, FORCE yourself to read sheetmusic the entire 2 hours. @ 10pm have a small glass of wine, or smoke a cigarette. 11pm go to bed. The less that happens after 10, the more rapid the programming.

This obviously won't work if you decide to take shortcuts and drink/smoke without playing.

Well, absolutely NO to the cigarette. Never have never will. Bleh! - LOL. I'm not a wine drinker either. Maybe if there's nothing else to drink at the restaurant. Prefer the occasional beer or bourbon. But not so late in the evening. Screws up my sleep.

I am not sure why reading sheet music for two hours is the answer. I mean, if I play, I am looking at sheet music. I wish I had a better memory so I didn't have to. But reading music is not a problem for me. It's the sitting down to begin with, then sitting for two hours (very restless and easily frustrated), and feeling productive and satisfied without all of the voices in my headspace that's the problem.


“Nobody wants to show you the hours and hours of becoming. They'd rather show the highlight of what they've become.”
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Originally Posted by Josh1770
It's the sitting down to begin with, then sitting for two hours (very restless and easily frustrated), and feeling productive and satisfied without all of the voices in my headspace that's the problem.

Then don’t do it. We have one life. Enjoy it!

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Originally Posted by dhull100
Originally Posted by Josh1770
It's the sitting down to begin with, then sitting for two hours (very restless and easily frustrated), and feeling productive and satisfied without all of the voices in my headspace that's the problem.

Then don’t do it. We have one life. Enjoy it!

I could not agree more.

I absolutely love music and I love learning to play instruments .... that is why I do it.

I played a trumpet in highschool. I played guitar and banjo after that.

Now I am playing piano.

I am not a very good player and was not with the other instruments either.

I have natural talent but do not work at it hard enough to get really good.

But I enjoy it the way I am doing it.

So I do it.

If you (the OP) cannot say that you enjoy it .... I see no reason to keep doing it.


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Originally Posted by Josh1770
Well, absolutely NO to the cigarette. Never have never will. Bleh! - LOL. I'm not a wine drinker either. Maybe if there's nothing else to drink at the restaurant. Prefer the occasional beer or bourbon. But not so late in the evening. Screws up my sleep.

I am not sure why reading sheet music for two hours is the answer. I mean, if I play, I am looking at sheet music. I wish I had a better memory so I didn't have to. But reading music is not a problem for me.

Cigarettes give you approximately the same dopamine rush as coffee, but coffee keeps you awake at night. People are as addicted to coffee as cigarettes. I'm not downplaying the harm in smoking, I'm just saying in terms of brain chemistry, people tend to poopoo the smoker, while reveling in their own chemical addictions.

I used cigarettes just as an example, there are other options like Vaping. This programming phase is just to create a mental inclination , behavioral modification. You don't have to keep vaping/ drink alcohol once you become consistent and feel that drive to practice piano.

The reason why you'd choose vaping/smoking/alcohol, is because the mental surge is almost instantaneous, The faster you can reward yourself after a certain action, the more tightly the brain will attribute the pleasure. So, this is a timing hack.

Again, I'm not suggesting that you need to drink / smoke for an extended period of time. This programming should produce strong results within 2-3 weeks.

As for WHY READING is always the problem. It is typically the highest cost function, (most stressful) for a non-sight reading player to perform. It's like internet lurkers, why do they lurk, Most lurkers have a drive to say something, but the majority type really really slowly. So typing is a high cost function, that they would not perform unless something pressing occured. This is responsible for why people write stupid intros like, I made an account just to say this, or I almost never post, but this thread has me riled up. The reason they never post is because their typing speed is so abysmal, that they can not work beyond the motivational threshold to act.

VS someone more Cheeky like Jeffcat, who also happen to type faster than he can speak. These people will write giant posts, because the cost to them is minimal.

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