Between visits to our new city to house-hunt and making sad attempts at packing up our home, I'm squeezing in as much practice as my forearms and sanity will let me.
There's the part of me that says you should ALWAYS be practicing. There's also the part that says your practice will be crap if you don't WANT to do work. Then there's the other part that seems to always remind me that I PRACTICE BETTER when I'm also exercising and taking time for short meditations.
There's no shortcut for hard work, for practice so tedious that you want to stab yourself in the eye with the end of your mallet. But there has to be a balance, right? It has to be ok that sometimes you have to clean the house before practice so you are able to focus on the notes and not on everything else you have to do. I wonder if other people can prioritize practice to the point that all other things are forgotten and ignored, and can they do that without the creeping anxiety of everything else that needs to be done.
It's no secret by now (to me or anyone who knows me) that my anxious, Type A nature works for me and against me in the practice world. If I don't practice, I get anxious. If I practice instead of manage my health, I get anxious. If I practice and neglect other obligations in my life, I get anxious. There's always so much to do.
I've learned that for me, meditation and stretching really help combat that anxiety, as well as relaxation techniques that have been introduced into my life recently. I always prided myself on connecting with my body as a tool for quieting my mind, but I had to be reminded of it, and I'm grateful that I was.
Those of us who are Semi-finalists for the competition received an email with our performance order and were told that it is based on our first round scores, but we don't know how. So.... going next-to-last is either good (aka I'm the current runner-up), or a chance to be the underdog (aka I barely made the cut). Husband assures me it's the former, which I appreciate. I'm practicing the same either way.
Right now my best friend is my Zoom recorder (thanks, mom and dad). Record, critique, record critique, record, critique.
Prelude from Suite VI. - J.S. Bach
Merlin 2 - Andrew Thomas
Toccata from Partita No. VI. for keyboard - J.S. Bach
White Pines, by Michael Burritt