There are few feelings like it: opening the case of your first trombone. For many, the first thing you notice is that "new instrument" smell. Even if the first trombone you played wasn't brand new - it is new to you.
The second most memorable moment is, of course, your first sound. Even though you hadn't yet had any lessons, you were determined to put that trombone to your mouth and make some sounds! By golly, you did it, too.
Unfortunately, that excitement fades over time. Happily, though, it is replaced with bigger challenges and exciting things to learn and be a part of. The grief of learning twelve scales is quickly forgotten when you play your first "real" solo. The fear and dread of having to audition for the top band is all but forgotten when you pull off that *really hard* piece that no one thought your section could handle.
The key to continued joy and success in playing an instrument is motivation. Why do you want to play the trombone? What goals should you set? Who can you play for? The answers to these questions, and others, goes to heart of what keeps you sliding along.
To help you remember the great things about playing the trombone, and give you some ideas on improving your trombone life, Brett Shuster has put together this simple worksheet of ideas to help you discover your motivations, and also remember them.
You can also visit the OTJ's Just for Beginners Forum, and read the Staying Motivated topic. If you have good ideas in this area, please share them. If you need some help remembering why you play the trombone, read some. And, if you ever feel discouraged, please E-mail me, and we'll talk about it.