You are probably getting better but sometimes it's hard to see for yourself. One way to gauge is play something that you couldn't play a few months or longer and notice if it feels easier to play than the first few times you tried and played it. If it does then congratulations, you are getting better.Hey all,
I am in my early 30s, have a great job, and play guitar (and bass… and drums) as a hobby.
Like many people I’ve seen online, I love to shop for new gear (belated NGD x3 coming soon). I have decent equipment, work from home next to all the aforementioned gear, and pick up a guitar multiple times a day.
My problem is I just don’t get any better. I’ve probably not improved in years. I know I need to practice, but I’ve found it difficult to make a goal, practice new things, etc. I basically just play stuff I already know and mess around.
I want to improve. How have you all that don’t get paid to make music improved? Stay motivated?
However if you have been playing the same things for a number of years, not trying any new material, then yeah, you are probably going to stagnate a bit. In order to get better you need to push yourself, get outside of your comfort zone and be really critical of what you can't do and want to do better. Like someone mentioned above, recording yourself is the best way I know how to see where you really suck.
Record yourself playing something you know like the back of your hand, and listen to yourself. First find out what you DO like, which can be easier than finding out what you DON'T like about your playing. Be really critical! Make a list of what you know you need to work on, break them down to smaller portions and work your way up to the big picture.
Getting a teacher (a good one) who can help you work on weaknesses, and it sounds as if you might know what they are, is always the best way to get better provided you know what you want to work on.