The Cycle of Interest and Disinterest

I've been thinking about my experiences with playing the guitar and reading books, and I've noticed a similar pattern with both activities. There are times when I really enjoy both. I get lost in the stories of the books I read and find joy in learning new songs on the guitar, even diving into music theory through videos and other internet resources. During these periods, reading and playing guitar almost become daily habits.

However, after a while, my interest fades. It could be a camping weekend that interrupts my guitar practice or a busy workweek that breaks my reading streak. These interruptions somehow make it hard to pick up the habit again. While it's easier to resume reading, like during train rides, getting back into playing the guitar feels like a hassle. I have to figure out where I left off, what video to watch next, or what music theory concept to learn. This alone often prevents me from picking up the guitar again.

Why does this happen? Is it because the habit wasn't fully formed yet? Or maybe I don't feel like I'm making progress, especially with the guitar. Perhaps it's because there's no grand goal, no performance to prepare for, or no accountability. Or could it be that I just lose interest after the novelty wears off? This last one seems unlikely since there's always so much more to learn and enjoy.

I haven't figured it out yet. Maybe I never will. Perhaps I need to accept that I'll have periods of intense interest that last a few months and then fade. Maybe I need more structure, like hiring a teacher for accountability. There's so much free content online to help me learn guitar, but maybe a teacher's role is more about keeping me accountable.

I don't know. Maybe someday I'll figure it out or find someone who has the answers I've been seeking for so long. We'll see.

A boy thinking about reading and playing guitar