5 Tips on How to Stay Motivated Playing the Piano

how to stay motivated at th -piano
3 minute read

Too many people quit playing the piano because they lose their motivation. At some point their musical journey seems to lack something. Here are 5 tips that will help you stay motivated playing the piano!

1. Remember why you started

Every musician lacks motivation at some point. Not seeing any progress may make even the last bit of your initial drive vanish. To stop the standstill, it’s crucial to always remember why you started playing the piano in the first place:

  • Remember that one song that you heard in a movie and have always wanted to play yourself.
  • Think of that one special artist whose music you admire.
  • How did it feel when you played a new piece flawlessly for the first time?
  • And: That look on the face of your loved ones when you played for them.

No matter what your “Why” is, always remember that you started playing the piano for a dream that’s worth pursuing. No one has ever regretted learning an instrument. Ever.

2. Play the music you love

Are you currently practicing a piece on the piano that you don’t like? Stop. There are literally tens of thousand of great pieces of piano sheet music out there. There is no need to play something that you don’t enjoy.

Are you taking piano lessons? Once you have reached a certain skill level that allows you to advance beyond the basics, talk to your teacher and ask for different material if you don’t like what you are currently playing.

If you are learning on your own, search the internet for music that will make you excited to play. Broaden your repertoire with the music you love – it’s really that simple.

3. Build a habit around your piano practice

Forming strong habits around your practice will help you to practice even if you don’t feel like it right now.

A habit is a behavior that we do on a regular basis – knowingly and unknowingly. Habits are important to get things done (just like brushing your teeth). Most things (workout, practice, meditation) are easier to maintain over a longer period of time if you build a habit around them:

  • Set a time. Decide whether you want to practice every evening from 9 to 10 or every Sunday afternoon. It’s up to you – but pick a time and stick with it. Don’t start skipping your rehearsals.
  • Take small steps. Most habits are doomed to fail if you start out too ambitiously. Don’t start with a 3-hour practice every day (you’ll burn out quickly). Start with 10 minutes every day and increase over time. That way your brain can adjust to your new behavior and you will develop a habit around your piano practice routine.
  • Make it interesting. Practicing the same piece over and over will be frustrating at some point. Make sure to mix up your practice with different exercises and songs to not lose interest. Most important: have fun while playing!
  • Reward yourself. Reinforce the habit circle in your brain by rewarding yourself after a successful practice. You have earned it!

4. Track your progress to stay motivated

Progress on the piano happens slowly. That’s why we often feel like we are stuck when we aren’t.

To not lose motivation, it’s crucial to keep track of your progress over a long period of time. You may not be able to see it after every practice. Perhaps you won’t even be able to see progress every week. But trust us – as long as you practice the piano you will get better.

To track your progress, make sure you…

  • …keep track of the pieces you have learned. You will be stunned how big your repertoire actually is and how fast it grows.
  • …get enough feedback from your teacher or your peers. If you are a self-learner there are plenty of ways to share your music online.
  • …use the right tools (apps, websites, practice plans) that will help you to track your progress.
  • record yourself while playing. If you do it a couple of times, you will see and hear how your piano playing improves.

5. Get inspired!

We have heard it many times. People stop playing the piano because they just don’t know what to play next. Once people stop taking classes, or they restart after a break or have simply finished one of the piano learning apps, they need inspiration on what to play next.

Here are some ways to get inspired and motivated again:

  • Browse YouTube for piano covers and tutorials you enjoy
  • Browse sheet music charts to see what other people are currently playing
  • Use this smart tool by OKTAV to get personalized recommendations based on your skill and taste
  • Simply listen to music on Spotify – once you hear something you like, go get the sheet music
Stay motivated at the piano

Let OKTAV help you stay motivated

OKTAV is the #1 platform for piano players. It gives you unlimited access to over 20,000 arrangements in all genres and difficulty levels. All you need is your browser. 100,000 satisfied musicians told us that OKTAV has brought fun and motivation back into playing the piano.