Learning to play a musical instrument can broaden your horizons and introduce you to a world of wonder and appreciation. Moreover, experts are now saying that it’s never too late to begin so why not start today? In a society steeped in technological gadgetry, there’s something tremendously appealing about using your mind and body (and some might even say your soul) to create a work that has mood and melody – something universal in its appeal.
Perhaps you look back on your youth and wish you’d taken up or persisted with learning a musical instrument. (Admittedly, that tuba you played in grade 4 was a bit unwieldy.) In all seriousness, more older people than ever are turning to music and enjoying the experience. There’s the benefit of creating music for others to enjoy but a psychological perk, too. Daily practice requires deep concentration which can prove both meditative and emotionally medicinal.
Learning a new skill later in life has been shown to improve cognitive function and physical coordination. Learning or relearning a skill such as playing a musical instrument can help improve/enhance manual dexterity and sharpen the brain. In a recent study conducted by the University of Texas, it was determined that “mentally challenging leisure activities” such as learning a musical instrument helps to rewire our brains to a more youthful state. Here’s a fascinating insight: unlike language with just one primary centre in the brain, there is no single centre for music – in fact, there are multiple areas of the brain that respond to music.
Unlike children who grow new brain cells all the time, adults have to work harder with existing brain cells and create new connections. That said, studies have shown that many adults have tremendous fortitude and “stick-to-it-iveness” when it comes to learning. Life has tempered unrealistic expectations and the right attitude, especially one of patience, can change everything. And unlike children, most adults don’t need prompting or cajoling to practice. Once they’ve made a sincere commitment, most will persist despite setbacks and challenges.
So, science is in your favour. It’s never too late to indulge a passion for making music. We all know that time is a treasured commodity, so it’s merely a matter of deciding, setting time aside and then following through. What lies at the heart of learning anything new – music included – is discipline. Practising music and eventually perfecting the craft is a skill but also an art that can bring tremendous joy into your life and into the lives of those around you.
There’s a longstanding debate around whether talent for music is a gift or whether it can be developed. Sure, some people have a natural endowment, but most successful people – in whatever endeavour – will tell you, talent is (ultimately) the result of interest, persistence, effort and patience. Small steps lead to big accomplishments. How do you feel about learning something new – about stepping outside your comfort zone? It’s never too late the start and with the right mindset (and excellent instruction using the most innovative, new methods from the team at Musiculus), who’s to say where your musical desire and drive might take you.
Here at Musiculus, we love music – it’s that simple, and we want to share that love with you. Explore, discover and achieve your musical desires with help from Musiculus.