When you’re playing a fretless instrument, such as a fretless bass guitar or a violin, it’s easy to be slightly sharp or flat as the note depends on the exact placement of your fingers. While musicians are careful to play with as much precision as they can, it can be fun to play off the note a bit, whether it be in a vibrato (the rapid pulsing or wavering of a tone), in a glissando (a slide upward and downward between notes), or through an intentional (or unintentional) departure from playing exactly on the note. With a fretted instrument, the fret bars keep your playing to those specific notes for that fret. They are certainly easier to play and provide more precision, but they limit the player to only those specific notes.
I recently bought a fretless bass and am having a great time playing with these dynamics. The ability to play expressively when I’m not limited by frets has given me a newfound sense of freedom and has allowed me to play in a way I’ve never played before. It has also made me think about the continuous range of tones being symbolic of how people live their lives.
Think back on those magical times in your life—when you were just oozing with joy and excitement. What was it about those moments that made everything feel magical? It seems sometimes that we live our lives for those moments, and, having experienced them, the rest of our lives seems very ordinary by comparison. We may try to recreate those times, but we’ll find that what we create is not the same because a lot of what made them special was who we were at the time. Does this mean that, as we move through our lives, there will be less and less magic? The answer is no, but we have to be more intentional about finding and seeing it. When we’re younger, many of our experiences are new, and we’re engaging in things for the first time, so our magical moments happen naturally. With each experience we have, the likelihood of new experiences goes down, but the good news is that it only goes down by a very small amount, as long as we continue to pursue and are open to the magic that is happening all the time.
Life is full of transitions. Some are big, life-altering changes, others are small changes in habits or activities, but transitions happen all the time. The more you’re conscious of them, the more intentional you can be. Try to notice any changes in your routine and ask yourself if they are intentional or just convenient. If you can be intentional about the little transitions, the decisions about big transitions will be easier to make.
It can be hard to let things run their natural course, especially when it means letting go of something very precious to you.
It is a very natural thing to move in and out of people’s lives. For workmates, teammates, or even friends, this can happen regularly, and while these transitions can be difficult, there are other circumstances that are way more intense. There are those in your life that are truly a part of you—literally and figuratively. You see a big part of them in you and you in them. You’ve given enough of yourself to them and to their growth and evolution that their lives and yours literally merge. At least for a time.
Some of these may seem overwhelming and carry repercussions that can have impacts for years to come. You may obsess and worry over them and struggle mightily to come up with the “correct” choice. But ultimately, there is no incorrect choice, as everything you experience becomes part of your story and gives you insights into your journey and your path. Something positive comes from every decision you make—you just have to be open to it and allow it to become part of your experience. Regrets can also be part of a decision, but they are also part of the experience and can result in positive outcomes.