Ever heard people say: “To be a creative guitar player, you must be born with this skill - otherwise it’s hopeless”? Like most guitarists, I used to believe in this myth and almost gave up playing guitar in frustration.

When I finally learned how to become a creative musician and taught hundreds of my guitar students to do the same, I identified key reasons why most guitarists have a hard time developing this skill in their own playing. What I found is, anyone with the right tools and the correct process can develop creativity.

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3 Things That Prevent You From Being More Creative As A Musician

1. You don’t know how to express yourself through music. Even though you may have lots of ideas, you still need to communicate those ideas in a musical manner. Without mastering the right skills needed to express and communicate yourself in your guitar playing, any creative idea you may have will simply die inside your head. Read this article about how to express yourself creatively and find out which specific skills you must possess for building creativity.

2. You disregard the ideas that come to you every day. We all have inspirational moments throughout the day when ideas strike us... a melody, a lick, a catchy chorus... In some cases we don’t pay attention to simple ideas and judge them as being poor. In other cases, we are simply not ready to use a great idea that strikes us in the moment.

3. You keep “waiting” for inspiration instead of building a strong and steady stream of creative ideas.

To solve these problems you need to create a strategy that helps you take advantage of the stream of inspiration that comes to you every day.

How To Create A Constant Flow Of Musical Inspiration

Step One: Train Your Mind To Be Prepared For New Ideas

Have you ever seen a guitar of some model or color that seemed to be so unique... and then you start seeing the exact same one all over the place? What happened here? When you made a conscious awareness of the design / color of that guitar, your mind took note of it and made it “relevant” to you. This is a mental phenomenon that you can take advantage of for the sake of becoming a much more creative musician.

Use this concept to consciously direct your mind towards seeking unique ideas - Every time you listen a song, focus your attention toward a specific instrument. Then, isolate it in your mind and listen for unusual patterns (or anything you may have missed while previously listening to the song).

Like any other type of exercise, the more you do this, the better you become at it. Keep practicing looking for unique ideas and you soon will be amazed with all the new things you discover.

Step Two: Be Ready To Capture Ideas

You can’t schedule inspiration, because great ideas might show up at any time. So you must be ready to catch them in any situation. Be serious about this because when you lose an idea, it’s almost sure you will not remember it again.

Make sure you always have a voice recorder and/or pen and paper close to you (if you don’t have your guitar) so you never miss a gem of inspiration again.

Step Three: Save Every Last Gem Of Inspiration

At first, focus on quantity instead of quality. Forget about thinking of killer ideas at this point - your only task is to collect as many ideas as you can. Additionally, do not criticize your ideas or develop a strong opinion about them...
Later on will be time to criticize and refine any idea, but for now, hold back any opinion of them. Even if any idea seems bizarre or odd at first, welcome it and keep it with the rest.

Step Four: Turn Your Ideas Into Real Music

Once you have amassed a good amount of fresh ideas, it’s time to turn them into actual songs (or guitar riffs, licks, solos, etc.). The best way to do this is to learn how to combine your understanding of music theory together with your physical guitar playing skills. Discover how you can do this in this article about effective songwriting strategies.

Now that you know the process for unleashing your inner creativity, implement it on a regular basis to strengthen your overall ability to express yourself through music. To accelerate your creative growth, find a guitar teacher to help you go through this process and reach higher levels of creativity even faster.

Author's Bio: 

About The Author: Tom Hess is an electric guitar teacher online, recording musician and a mentor for guitar teachers. He trains guitarists from around the world how to achieve their goals in his guitar lessons online.  Visit his website tomhess.net to receive many free guitar playing tips, and to read more articles about guitar playing.