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Rule No. 1 – If you can’t turn a dry exercise into music, drop it.

When I was 16 years old, I heard a guy playing jazz in our school, and from that day on, I started to practice 6 hours every day. I did that for six years, with the worst possible approach. I was practicing everything that I could get my hands on, and that means tons of dry exercises.
I was progressing fast, but in those six years I did not let myself enjoy the journey. I was constantly practicing things that were dry and difficult. I believed that this is the fastest way to get to the top.
(For sure it was the fastest way to kill all my passion)
One day I woke up, and I couldn’t look at my piano. All the love I had towards that instrument was gone. It was such a sudden and unexpected feeling.
I did not touch the piano for a year.
In that year, I tried to reinvent myself, but I was so clumsy doing anything else, so in the end, I had to face the piano again in order to survive.
‘Alright,’ I said to the piano. ‘Let’s try this one more time with one condition: If we can’t turn a dry exercise into music that helps me to express what I feel and who I am, we drop it.’
It worked. And after ten years, it is still working.
So if you have a notebook where you keep track of your piano practice I want you to write this rule on a page where you can see it every day:
Rule No. 1 – If you can’t turn a dry exercise into music, drop it.

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