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I overcame lack of confidence in my music ability

Joined: 5/26/2011
Posts: 1
I was always fearful of looking the fool, or being criticized for making mistakes while playing bass in my orchestra. I felt that I wasn’t a very good player and for that I never took risks with my playing and never challenged myself to play difficult pieces. I held myself back from progressing as a musician. That changed when it came time for testing for principle bassist, another bassist and myself were dead even on the passages given to us to prepare. So it came down to sight reading a piece. As a result of my lack of confidence in myself, in my mind I had already said “You can’t win. You’re not good enough to sight read this piece”. I counted myself out before I even looked at it.
When my teacher placed the piece of paper in front of me I felt sick, but for some strange reason I began to play—which I would have never done before—and in that moment I didn’t care about the other bassist or getting principle bassist. I felt I needed to prove to myself that I could do it. As I played every note, hit every rhythm I felt a smile pull across my face. When I reached the end, I felt so incredibly accomplished. I ended up beating the other bassist and I became principle bassist in my orchestra, but more importantly I realized that I am a good musician. All I have to do is believe in myself and have confidence in my playing.
As a result of this experience I have worked harder, trained more, and grown more in love with this beautiful instrument. I now love playing even more because I don’t second guess myself, I’m not afraid anymore to make a mistake and I am free to play for the just the love of music. Before I believed that a mistake was the end of the world and now I see mistakes just as an excuse to play more. I have created a quintet and have played for many different places and people, I have met amazing people and had wonderful opportunities open up for me because I don’t hold myself back. I now see that I can go extremely far in music—with a lot of hours of practice of course.
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