Every time we get ready for a piano recital, students feel the need to find a reason for preparing for it. Maybe I should prepare to show off my skills. Maybe I should prepare to avoid being laughed at if I make mistakes. Maybe I should prepare so that my parents see their money’s worth. Or maybe I should prepare just to have the teacher off my back for a change.
I finally took charge and changed their focus, because we are not educating children to have their best performances and to make everyone proud. It’s great if we can achieve a great performance, but the recital is not what we’re working for. We’re teaching the ACTUAL WORK.
It’s the journey that matters, it’s the effort you put in it.
It’s about how you treat responsibilities when no one is watching you. How do you practice when you’re alone? Do you visit the piano just to sign your attendance sheet? Or do you actually want to learn something and get better while you’re at it?
It’s about doing your job the best you can, even if you can’t have a guaranteed perfect result. Being able to say: the emotions might get the best of me and I might mess up a few things, but I am so content I finally managed to conquer this difficult passage. I am better because of it and less afraid of a greater challenge.
That’s when you can have no regrets when something goes wrong and you can say: I did my best, there is nothing I could’ve done to prevent this mishap.
The last thing I want them to do is to compare themselves with other children and imagine all the ifs situations. No ifs. Their only goal should be to find their true self by improving from their present state.
So keep being an inspiration for your children, show them what it means to do your best and why that is enough. Encourage them to pursue healthy habits and allow them to make mistakes as long as they’re doing their best.