I’m a little ashamed to admit now that I’ve done some research, but until I watched the video that I’ve posted below, I didn’t actually know who Steve Vai was. I stumbled onto a YouTube video of him on a favorite subreddit of mine from a couple years back. In the video, which is part of a series, Guitar Center Sessions, Steve Vai shares the secrets to his success and how you can emulate them to find success of your own.
Here is a list of 8 things Steve Vai says you need to do to be successful, and what he had to say about them.
Identify what you really want.
“Whatever it is you really want, that’s what’s going to come out. The thing that your most comfortable with is what you’ll do best.”
Focus on your strengths.
“I’ve got strengths and I’ve got weaknesses – I don’t work on my weaknesses, I ignore them and cultivate my strengths. The level of achievement that we have at anything, is a reflection of how well we were able to focus on it.”
Think positive thoughts.
“The only thing that’s holding you back, is the way you’re thinking.”
Visualize your success.
Like in my last post – 4 Mental Exercises To Help Envision Your Success – he uses the visualization technique.
“Pick a song in your head that you’d like to be able to play. Something within your reach and imagine yourself playing it. That’s the first part of the exercise in achievement. See and hear yourself playing it perfectly, elegantly, from beginning to end with confidence. The more you can crystallize that vision, the more you’ll become a self-fulfilled prophecy.”
“Pick a time that’s yours. Shut off your cell phone, TV, the internet, and sit and focus on your goal.”
Don’t get discouraged.
“Whenever you get discouraged, go back to the big picture. Go back to your place of excitement because it’s a vision so crystallized in your head, you’ll be able to picture yourself doing it and you’ll get through it.”
Do what you love.
“There’s no work involved if it’s all a joy. I’ve never worked a day in my life, I’ve never struggled a day in my life. I’ve had challenges, but my feelings about what I do and my success, I’ve never struggled because playing guitar was my muse.”
Break down problems.
“Break it down piece by piece by piece. If it’s a classical song go one bar at a time, then to the next bar, and the next, and eventually you’ll be able to play it. Stick at it, because at first it’s just getting your fingers in shape. Then, once you own this piece of music, then it flows and this whole other thing comes over you.”
Here is the YouTube video of Guitar Center Sessions with Steve Vai.