Staying in Tune

“Sometimes you want to give up the guitar, you’ll hate the guitar. But if you stick with it, you’re gonna be rewarded.”

Jimi Hendrix

I started playing guitar in middle school. “Playing” is a generous way to put it. I owned a guitar and would mess around. I picked up a few things from a friend and my grandfather. But I was just a guy who owned a cheap guitar. I even took a lesson… once. Maybe twice.

It wasn’t until high school, where I started really falling in love with playing piano when my interest in guitar became more than a passing fancy. I still didn’t really know any of the theory, but I trained up my hand dexterity, ears, and overall feel for the guitar to come up with interesting rhythms and tunes.

One thing about guitars is they never stay in tune. The newer the strings, the more quickly they’ll un-tune themselves. Tuning is a ritual you always need to be cognizant of and constantly check on. Otherwise, the sound will be off and the strings won’t work well together sonically.

It’s also worth noting that there’s more than one way to tune a guitar. Standard Tuning (EADGBE) is just one among of many.

I find this
Tuning is a great metaphor for a lot of things in our lives.

Ambition. Learning new skills. Competition. Priority. Interest. Relationships. Love. Values. Work.

Each aspect of our lives has a certain frequency that works for us. Sometimes we are in tune and sometimes we are out of tune.

For example, when we are learning a new skill, we start with a mountain of enthusiasm and energy. We see people who have mastered a craft and want to be good at it too. As we begin our journey, and time goes on, our enthusiasm waxes and wanes from excitement to boredom, or from having fun to overworked.

The same is true for love. In the beginning, everything is butterflies. But as time goes on, things go from learning about each other to growing and experiencing life together.

And, like everything else, things can get out of tune if you aren’t checking in on it.

We stop learning a new skill because we get distracted by another one, or our goal—our reason for learning—gets unclear and out of tune. Our relationships become repetitive. Our drive to compete diminishes because of losing or lack of motivation.

But just like a guitar, all we need to do is retune.

We do that through genuine intention, action, and care.

You must constantly periodically return to yourself. Your values. your vision. your priorities.

Reaffirm what’s important to you.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,
— Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1176

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