The benefits of learning guitar can be a life-changing experience. The discipline and creativity involved in learning to play guitar are key skills to develop in your life in general.
Life is full of adventure. For some, like the beloved Bilbo Baggins in the novel The Hobbit, everyday life can quickly turn into an unexpected adventure with twists and turns at each corner and the promise of great rewards. As Bilbo is faced with the opportunity for a once-in-a-lifetime experience, many things almost stand in his way of leaping faith.
Spoiler alert—Bilbo does choose to go on the adventure and receives a great reward in return. However, his decision to go on this adventure could have been easily halted if he focused on the wrong things. For any traditional hobbit, leaving the comfort of his own home would have been a horrible nightmare.
However, Bilbo recognized the great benefits that came into his life by stepping out of his comfort zone.
Though real life is slightly different from the fiction story shared in this famous children’s novel, there are many parallels to be pulled here. Like a typical hobbit, we hold ourselves back from opportunities for growth, learning, and adventure. One of those great opportunities in life is learning how to play musical instruments, such as the guitar. You might find yourself coming up with excuse after excuse from learning guitar now, in this stage of your life.
Learning to Play the Guitar
In the following article what you will learn is that learning to play the guitar comes with an excellent reward and has lasting benefits for your life.
Whether you’re reaping the benefits when learning guitar on your own with the help of blog posts or with an app that has online guitar lessons you can always improve technique and proficiency through concerted practice.
If you are someone who prefers a guitar app to help you while learning to play guitar, then see our list of guitar apps that we have reviewed.
It might not be easy to find the motivation to sit down and practice all of the time. But just like Bilbo Baggins, if you put effort into practicing guitar every day, you will receive a great outcome. As you practice and begin to improve, you will find that you can get more out of all types of musical experiences.
Beyond the noticeable improvements, you can make on the guitar by practicing, learning the guitar stimulates creativity, sharpens concentration in other areas of your life, and provides significant health benefits.
Top 15 Life Enhancing Benefits Of Learning Guitar
- Improves your discipline skills. Learning how to be disciplined is one of the most consistent benefits of playing guitar. You need to practice. Becoming strict with yourself is a valuable skill that can be applied to all areas of life.
- Increases your creativity. Being adaptable and creative are excellent skills that you can utilize as both a musician and in your professional life.
- Broaden your horizons. One of the best reasons to play guitar is to help expand your knowledge of music, and you will better understand the music you love.
- Sharpens your concentration. Research has shown that one of the health benefits of playing guitar is that it improves concentration.
- Creates therapeutic experiences. Guitar playing can be a very calming experience. If you are looking to relax and be productive, you should start learning the guitar.
- Learning guitar introduces you to new people. There is a fantastic social element to guitar playing, and you will probably meet many new people if you start playing guitar in public.
- It is an attractive skill to have. One of the common, although relatively unimportant, reasons to play guitar is that it is a good skill to have if you want to show off.
- Helps with confidence. One of the key benefits of playing guitar is that you will become more confident as you progress and become more skilled.
- Introduces a new way to communicate. Being able to express yourself through your guitar playing should be an exciting experience for any beginner.
- Improves your memory. One of the benefits of playing guitar on the brain is that by practicing over and over again, you can improve your memory.
- Boost your multitasking skills. Another benefit of playing guitar on the brain is that it increases your ability to multitask. As a guitarist, you will have to read music, play your instrument, and pay attention to other musicians all at the same time.
- Improves your dexterity. The intricate plucking, picking, and strumming techniques you will learn will improve your coordination and dexterity.
- Gives you a new appreciation for music. As you dig deeper into the world of music and guitar, you will probably gain a greater appreciation for music’s value.
- Provides a sense of accomplishment. At the end of a guitar-playing session, you should feel a good understanding of pride and accomplishment. One of the health benefits of playing guitar is that you can feel positive and energized by your progress.
- It helps you play other instruments. One of the benefits of playing guitar is that you will build up musical knowledge that will make it easier to learn other instruments.
Many guitarists will tell you they feel most comfortable with the guitar in their hands. This attitude can help with confidence and self-esteem and help you overcome both professional and personal hurdles.
The importance of the guitar in our lives cannot be underestimated. Learning to play the guitar could be one of the greatest pleasures of your life. Though this process certainly comes with challenges and difficulties, there are also various health benefits of playing guitar. Continue reading for 15 life, enhancing the benefits of learning to play the guitar.
1. Teaches Discipline
Learning to play the guitar is one of the best ways to teach discipline. Unfortunately, that is because it is often so frustrating to play well. You have to practice if you want to be good.
Practicing regularly will teach you how to fail and improve on your failures repeatedly. Discipline is an important life skill. Furthermore, many areas of your life can be enhanced by being disciplined and strict with yourself.
Playing the guitar is tough, and it requires a certain mindset. But this sort of attitude will help you be successful in many areas outside of music too!
2. Engenders Creativity
One of the key benefits of learning guitar is that it is a creative process. Strumming your guitar, searching for licks and riffs can be some of the most interesting innovative experiences you can have. Moreover, there is always a great song waiting to found with the guitar.
As a discipline, creativity is an important element that can be polished while playing guitar and used in other life areas. Having an active mind, looking for exciting solutions is a valuable thing in the professional world.
Playing the guitar stretches your creative muscles. You are always looking for the next note, or chord, or fingerpicking technique. It is an exciting process that can stimulate your mind even when you aren’t holding a guitar.
3. Broaden Your Horizons
Playing the guitar can introduce you to new cultures. The guitar accommodates many different genres of music that span the globe. Learning to play guitar will broaden your horizons and can give you a new perspective.
If you learn to play blues, jazz, rigid, or indie rock songs on the guitar, you are already consuming a wide variety of perspectives through various musical styles. Practicing different genres will improve your musical literacy.
Beginners can get frustrated because they have to learn tunes on their classical guitar. On the upside, by learning the classical guitar, you will likely become exposed to music genres like flamenco with which you may not be familiar.
SEE ALSO: Understanding What Makes The Top 8 Types Of Guitar Unique
4. Sharpens Your Concentration
Playing the guitar requires concentration. There are so many distractions in modern society that a few hours of engagement are a precious thing. Many people have forgotten how to concentrate because they are always multitasking.
Learning the guitar requires you to sit down and focus on one thing at a time. There are not many hobbies that require such dedication. The importance of the guitar in our lives can be immense. Learning to play the guitar is a relatively easy way of sharpening your brain.
SEE ALSO: 7 Tested Solutions To Help You Learn Guitar Through Video Games
There are several mental health benefits to learning the guitar. Music therapy is a recognized clinical strategy for improving the quality of life for patients. Listening and playing instruments is an excellent way of calming down, focusing on an attainable goal, and reducing stress and anxiety levels.
Health Benefits of Playing Guitar
Learning to play the guitar is an excellent way of managing your stress. Many musicians compare practicing guitar to being in a meditative state. The therapeutic nature of practicing alone is one of the key reasons why you should play the guitar. They’re very few other activities that enable you to spend time alone and focus constructively.
6. Introduces You to New People
There is an important social factor in learning the guitar. It is challenging to learn an instrument in isolation. There are many helpful online resources, but these should not take away from the vital social element of music. When you pick up a guitar and begin to learn a few chords, you are instantly inducted into a community of fellow musicians.
One of the significant pros of playing guitar is the collaborative nature of music. You may meet new people at jam sessions, gigs, or in practice rooms. In the beginning, you may need a teacher. Leaning on other musicians’ expertise is a great way of improving your playing and meeting new people.
SEE ALSO: 10 Simple Ways To Find The Best Guitar Lessons
7. An Attractive Skill to Have
If you’re still asking yourself, “Should I learn guitar?” this benefit should at least provide some level of motivation to learn. Without a doubt being able to play an instrument is an attractive skill. The guitar is one of the most romantic instruments of all time. You can serenade loved ones to your heart’s content. Being proficient in any instrument is an attractive quality. But the guitar holds a special place in history.
The mere fact that you are learning guitar is evidence of your curiosity and will to improve your life. Playing guitar is an easy way to impress your crush. Of course, you should probably make sure you can play a few tunes before busting the acoustic out at a party!
8. Helps with Confidence
Being good at the guitar can improve your confidence. Unfortunately, as a beginner, the guitar can also test your confidence. Once you get over the initial barrier to entry, the guitar can be a significant confidence booster if the rest of your life is pushing you down.
In general, music has always been a way for people to express themselves, and being able to do this is vital for your confidence. With extra confidence comes increased mental health, which, as is described in another section, boosts overall brain health.
The best way to boost confidence in your guitar playing is to practice regularly. Playing live gigs can also help you get used to nerves and perform in other areas of life. Another benefit of learning guitar now is that the quicker you start, the quicker you will gain your skills.
9. A New Way to Communicate
Another reason to play the guitar is to learn new ways of self-expression and communication. By playing the guitar, you can express feelings that you can’t put into words. Music has always been a supreme form of expression. The guitar has so much room for nuance and interpretation. For many years musicians have used the guitar to rid themselves of anger, sadness, and frustration.
Playing the guitar is also a fantastic way to communicate joy. A well-placed chord can say a thousand words. Many guitarists will tell you that learning a new lick or a heavy riff is the best way to spend a few idle hours.
10. Improves Your Memory
Learning to play guitar can help to improve your memory. According to a TEDTalk about how playing instruments affects the brain, research shows that listening to music and playing instruments activate your entire brain. The TEDTalk says, “playing an instrument is the brain’s equivalent of a full-body workout.” Disciplined efforts to play an instrument will improve overall brain function.
In addition to the scientific evidence above, supporting reasons to play the guitar, a substantial portion of your practice hours will be dedicated to memorizing scales, progressions, and licks. Frequently exercising your memory muscles by regularly practicing the guitar leads to advanced functions within the brain, such as retrieving and storing memories quicker.
Over time you will develop personal strategies for remembering the music applied in your regular day-to-day life. Your memory will improve, even if you are not actively focused on memory exercises. Muscle memory develops through repetition. Playing the guitar will become natural and will help to improve your cognitive skills.
SEE ALSO: Learn Guitar With Apps: The 11 Best Ones To Use Today
11. Boost Your Multitasking Skills
One of the key benefits of playing guitar is that you will develop your ability to multitask. At various times guitar playing will require you to read music, pick the right notes, strum to the correct rhythm, and listen to other musicians.
If you feel like you need to improve your multitasking skills, learning the guitar is a great place to start. The process of learning any musical instrument is multifaceted.
The more you practice, the greater your ability to perform multiple tasks will be. Being able to multitask is a crucial skill to have in many walks of life. This skill is crucial to develop in virtually all career paths, as a parent, and in busy periods of your life. Learning to multitask is also one of many reasons to play guitar as learning this skill will benefit you in multiple facets of life, not just in your musical efforts.
Benefits of Playing Guitar on the Brain
- Improves memory
- Improves the ability to execute complex tasks simultaneously.
- Provides a therapeutic respite from the everyday
- Sharpens ability to concentrate
- Exercises all parts of the brain
- Increases capacity to store and retrieve memories
12. Improves Your Dexterity
There are many benefits to learning guitar, one of which may be to improve your dexterity. Guitar playing requires a lot of precise and complex finger and hand movements.
For some beginners who may be clumsy doing everyday tasks, playing the guitar can improve dexterity and coordination. However, your increased dexterity won’t come from occasional practice here and there. Practicing the guitar every day will increase dexterity the quickest.
Through practice, you will strengthen your ability to command your fingers to complete complex movements. Dexterity can be improved in other ways, but by learning to play the guitar, you are also picking up different life-changing skills.
13. Gives You A New Appreciation for Music
Once you have started to practice with your guitar regularly, you may begin to have a new appreciation for all the great music and musicians you have listened to.
Practicing can be intensely frustrating, especially when you try to replicate what you have seen great guitarists do on stage and on records you love.
One reason to play guitar that always comes up is the desire to be like Hendrix, Clapton, and other legendary guitarists.
SEE ALSO: 21 Of The Most Badass, Best Guitar Players Throughout History
As you learn more about the guitar, you will undoubtedly gain a great appreciation for the complexity and skill that goes into producing the music we all know and love.
14. A Sense of Accomplishment
One of the great benefits of learning guitar is the immense sense of accomplishment you feel when you finally nail a riff or finish a solo over a complex chord progression.
This feeling is tough to replicate in other areas of life. One of the most common reasons to play guitar for many beginners is the sense of progress and joy you can get from playing. And what makes it even better is the constant opportunity for accomplishment. As you practice the guitar daily, you will get better and better, continually learning harder riffs and songs.
15. Helps You Play Other Instruments
Learning the guitar can be an essential gateway to playing other instruments. After you have made a decent amount of progress on the guitar, you could move on to other stringed instruments like the bass, ukulele, mandolin, and even violin!
Playing the guitar will teach you the necessary skills: rhythm, tone, fingering techniques. This knowledge can be readily applied to many other instruments. As you branch out to play different instruments, you will also become a better guitar player. Practicing music theory will give you a keener ear and eye for playing your current instruments and others regardless of the instrument.
If you are a keen musician, you will be able to have lots of fun experimenting with the skills you have gained from learning the guitar.
Practice Makes Perfect When Learning Guitar
At this point, you should no longer be asking yourself, “Should I learn guitar?” You should be running out the door to purchase your first! As expressed, there are multiple health benefits of playing guitar, including increased mental health, dexterity, and creativity.
The more you play the guitar, the more you will feel the benefits. Music is a great gift that can be enjoyed by many people. Learning to play the guitar is a way of broadening your horizons. It is a valuable and enriching skill to have that will bring you endless hours of fun throughout your life. And learning guitar now will only be the start of many great benefits that will come into your life.
Some of these benefits will be more valuable to you than others. Maybe you are already a confident individual, but you have struggles dealing with stress. Similarly, perhaps you know how to be disciplined in the professional sphere but lack avenues for creativity in your personal life.
Learning to play the guitar is a journey. Please don’t despair if you are not immediately feeling the benefits of learning guitar. Patience is the key to success. With a healthy dose of hard work and patience, you should be seeing the benefits of playing the guitar in your life very soon!
How has your life been changed by learning the guitar?
Share in the comments below!
Lyla Peterson says
It’s so interesting how learning guitar can strengthen cognitive skills like focus, concentration, and memory. I love to sing and write songs, so I have been thinking about taking guitar lessons to improve my songwriting abilities. I’m glad to hear that it can also strengthen mental skills that are useful in everyday life.
Great feedback, Lyla. Thanks for your comment.
Teresa Decesario says
My aunt asked me what I want for Xmas I said a guitar she said you play it once or twice and it sit in the Conner and collect dust. Well I didn’t get I was disappointed so my dad said the money you get from your birthday the next day I’ll take you to the city and get your guitar and I did it was electric but couldn’t afford the amplifier I said no problem I played with it with out the amplifier but my friend got a new amplifier and gave me his old one which was like new. But played it day and night and taught myself. 10yrs later I was playing and singing in my room went to get something to drink my aunt was in the kitchen and she just looked at me in shock she said that was you yes she thought it was my radio or stereo I replied collecting dust My guitar playing has helped me in so many ways in good times and bad music is a big part of me tapping year to year and hearing my improvements then playing for party’s then for the homeless children. And then a coffee group each morning now teaching a friend how to play and now it just turned 50 yrs later and still going strong I love the most making others happy with my music. As it helps me in many ways. In life especially when times are hard I will never give it up music is a big part of me
Adam Golightly says
My cousin really wants to learn how to plan guitar so that they can have something to do with their time and can relax. They would really like to get some lessons from a professional so that they can make their own music. I liked what you said about how practicing regularly can boost confidence and communicate emotions better.
Sonny john abraham says
Check out http://www.hindimusiclessons.com
Roy Flores says
Love learning and playing my guitars, but my passion is working on them.
I started on an old guitar that finally became unglued and no longer would stay tuned. I bought an electric/acoustic and was very happy with it. I had it for no more than one week and i left it on top off my van and forgot about it. As i was driving to the store the guitar inside its case flew off my van and was ran over by another car. I was devistated. The guitar was stuck under a car. I got under the car and literally pushed the guitar still in its case out with my legs. I dont have the money to fix it so im fixing it as good as i can with glue and ice cream sticks. I was so discouraged that i was going to give up learniing how to play. Thank God that the guitar was not totally destroyed and with some ice cream sticks and glue with alot of TLC im back on. Practicing atleast 30 minutes a day i can hear my guitar playing improving every week. Thank the Good Lord above i didnt quit because their were times when the glue wouldnt stick right or the wood i was using didnt match and my patience was.on a low ebb. I woukd say a prayer for Gods help and i continue to improve every day now. It hasnt been easy but when i play a gospel hymn like Amazing Grace and i see tears coming from those that are listening because God is touching them every practicing moments become well worth the discipline.
Michael Voss says
The most amazing comment, ever.
William Cayemberg says
Guitar came to me when I was anxious and depressed after a divorce and death of a family member. I see it as rebooting the brain. I learned to read music notation which forced me to focus on the task which seemed to shut down the anxiety. Allowed me to stay off any prescribed meds. Seemed to bring a sense of calm to my life. The music just seeps into your soul. I actually believe it to be true.
Nukk Lee says
Well, the content of the article says all!!
An entity such as Music and Love are of God’s best gifts to mankind!
Need I say more, folks! 😉
Well written an article! I always reading such kind…Thanks indeed!
Nukk Lee says
Whoa!! Praise the Lord!
William, that’s just heavenly an experience!!
Ya know I never really learnt how to read the staff notation proper…Sad huh?
Way to go man! Keep it up!
All dont make themselves great painters, all are not great violinists ….. music is an inborn quality in human beings to learn and master it. Very few have it !!!
All true I’ve been playing on and off for 50 years it’s my go to to de- stress when the world around me is chaotic I love it music is what makes the world go around wouldn’t want to live in a world without music.
Truly inspiring article. I can’t thank you enough for taking time to examine the often overlooked benefits of ones musical journey. I might add that in my own quest for mastery of the guitar getting an instructor has been paramount .
Levi Armstrong says
It’s good to know that learning how to play the guitar can help a person improve their dexterity and coordination because of the complex finger and hand movements. My teenage daughter has always been clumsy, so maybe it would benefit her if I enroll her in an accredited high school guitar class. She’s also a huge music fan, so I think she would flourish as a guitarist.
My experience with guitar has been nothing but frustrating. As someone who will never play for others (because nobody wants to hear me play), I’m having a hard time wanting to continue. Combine that with the fact that I don’t see any improvement from practice. You either have it or you don’t, and I so very clearly don’t.
Mark, your comment really hit me because I remember that I used to feel like that.
I want you to ask yourself just one question. Are you ready? O.k….
The question is, “Do I really want to play?”
If the answer is”yes”, then you owe it to yourself NOT TO GIVE UP!!! PERIOD!!!
There are also different ways to learn how to play…
All the teachers want you to think that you have to learn scales, and where each note is on the neck, and so on and so forth, etc. …
While all of this knowledge is great, sometimes you need a different approach altogether.
Try this BEFORE YOU QUIT.
Pick a song that you really like, preferably one that has only 3 or 4 chords…
The song I used, way back when, was “More than a feeling”, by the band Boston.
The beginning of the song was so beautiful and that’s what I wanted to learn. I had somebody who knew the song show me how to play it, and in the process I learned three or 4 chords!!!
Now, that’s all I could play but it was enough to bring back the ENTHUSIASM!!!
You can do it.
Oh by the way, I eventually found myself in Nashville, with a PUBLISHING DEAL!!!
HAD MY FIRST CUT IN 2007.
THAT MEANS THAT A SONG I WROTE WAS CHOSEN TO BE ON A CD RELEASED BY THE BAND”FLYNNVILLE TRAIN”…
“NOWHERE THAN SOMEWHERE” IS THE TITLE… By the way, I have a 9th-grade level education, so obviously I am really really glad I didn’t give up when I felt like you might feel now… Anyway,
had to come home to Louisiana to take care of my Mom, who finally lost her battle in May of 2020…
Thinking about Nashville again.
Anyway, man, you CAN DO THIS!!!
If I could do this, and if I actually saw actual improvement from when I would practice, then I would still be doing it. Unfortunately, even just doing 15 minutes of practice every day for 4 weeks did not result in any measurable growth. I first picked up the instrument 4 years ago, though I have absolutely no idea why, and in that time I still cannot do what someone can do after 6 months. So don’t tell me that I can do this when I so very clearly can’t.
You haven’t yet given me a reason to continue. Just because you were able to figure it out means that everyone can do it? If I could do it, I would already be able to. But, after 4 years of trying, I still can’t. At what point should I be able to do this?
Bautista Velazquez says
The only thing that can stop you is if you dont have time to practice. if thats not it, then is your fault. To learn an instrument, requires a lot of personal values, that if you dont have them, then you should get started to gain them. Requires dedication, discipline, creativity, a lot of patience, hard work, and to know that if you are not learning, is because that the things you were doing were not the correct ones, so try other things. And a life lesson that gives you learning guitar is that, life is hard, and solving things take a lot, a lot of time, of trying and trying. I was a suicidal person, and i learned that by that way. And i saw then this by the process of learning guitar. So keep going. It will be a life changing experience. You’ll become a greater person. Its not just about learning to play a song.
Fred Gibbons says
It’s interesting that you mention that learning to play the guitar is a great way to build your self-confidence. Self-confidence is a trait that I would like to develop this year, so I’m thinking about buying a guitar so that I can start learning to play. I’m going to look for a reputable business in my area that can sell me a guitar.
Jonathan Hansen says
It’s cool that you mention that learning to play the guitar can help you develop dexterity. I would like to have better dexterity, so I’m thinking about enrolling in a guitar class. I’m going to search for a good business that offers guitar classes to use.
So right on. Playing for 50 years and all true
Thanks for taking the trouble to jot it all down
orin tooker says
I had to learn finger style because I couldn’t get the hang of strumming.. Now that I have some proficiency, I get a kick out of learning Lightfots stuff & turning some of Merkle hagards stuff into finger picking songs. Latest challenge has been Ghost Riders–a flat pickers dream but a challenge to convert but I did it! The Martins have really made it all enjoyable.
I started learning at 50. Never too late. I always admired folk who played when I was younger but never thought it was for me. It’s like a black art, a secret, esoteric. Nobody told me it could be easy. If I’d learnt when younger I might have pulled more lasses but ah well. I’m enjoying it now at 71 and rising. X
Taylor Hicken says
I appreciated it when you shared that playing guitar can help improve your concentration and confidence level. My friend just mentioned the other day that he is planning to learn to play a musical instrument so that it can benefit his overall well-being. I will suggest to him take guitar lessons where it can help improve his concentration and confidence level.
If I haven’t experienced any of the “benefits” mentioned in this article in 5 years of playing, is that a sign that I should quit?