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#1243639 - 08/04/09 09:20 PM Clavier Companion article on stress and batteries
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 13324
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
For those of you who haven't read it, the July/August issue had a great article it in using a battery analogy to talk about us piano teachers and our use of time away from the studio. He points out that we have a great advantage over most people in that we get to do something that we are passionate about and love to do in our free time. However, that also comes with the problem of never actually getting away from work. We constantly are thinking about teaching, practicing, refining/streamlining our studio and policies, and on top of that dealing with issues that arise. Because of this, we tend to never be fully away. Like batteries, if you don't let them fully charge while the phone is turned off, that charge won't last as long. The writer also uses other analogies with the battery that really hit home.

As I type, I'm on vacation in Cape Cod (so I'm guilty too!). I did set my voice mail to say that I'm unavailable until I return and to call back (rather than leave a message, which means either I have to call back right away and deal with things or remember to call back when I return).

What do you do to let your batteries recharge?
private piano/voice teacher FT

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#1243664 - 08/04/09 09:53 PM Re: Clavier Companion article on stress and batteries [Re: Morodiene]
Kreisler Offline

Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13826
Loc: Iowa City, IA
I read, play golf, video games, work out, watch TV, hang out with friends, and play with my dogs. Earlier this summer I took a short vacation to Chicago with my wife. Thursday I'm going to LA to visit my sister.

It's very helpful that my wife works at a hospital. I can hang out with her and her friends and listen to them talk about bacterial meningitis and status epilepticus all day. They say stuff like "can you believe his troponin level was that high?" It's nice, actually. I'm learning quite a bit about medicine!

I also find it very helpful to listen to a lot of music. While most of my CD collection is classical, the CDs in my car right now are Michael Jackson, Styx, Tom Waits, Radiohead, the Schubert Eb Piano Trio, and Christof Lauer. (I was actually listening to Thriller the day before MJ died. He was a major influence on my musical life!)
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)


#1243677 - 08/04/09 10:14 PM Re: Clavier Companion article on stress and batteries [Re: Kreisler]
Minniemay Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
I cook and bake. What a stress reliever!
B.A., Piano, Piano Pegagogy, Music Ed.
M.M., Piano

#1244231 - 08/05/09 07:14 PM Re: Clavier Companion article on stress and batteries [Re: Minniemay]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 13324
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
But how do you "leave work" when you leave work? How do you separate yourself so you can truly rest and start up fresh? Whenever I do nothing music related - not even think about it - over the weekend, I always end up hitting Monday like a brick wall of reality, that I have so much to do and little time to do it before lessons.
private piano/voice teacher FT

#1244233 - 08/05/09 07:17 PM Re: Clavier Companion article on stress and batteries [Re: Morodiene]
Minniemay Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
It helps that my studio is separate from my house. It's attached to the back of my garage, so I literally go to and from work. But mentally, there is always music going on. Singing is the perfect distraction for me. It's music, but it's not work.
B.A., Piano, Piano Pegagogy, Music Ed.
M.M., Piano

#1244237 - 08/05/09 07:20 PM Re: Clavier Companion article on stress and batteries [Re: Morodiene]
Ebony and Ivory Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/14/05
Posts: 1179
Loc: Minnesota
I guess I really don't. It doesn't bother me to be thinking about piano & lessons "all the time". Some of my best ideas have come to me when I'm in my "down time".

I don't have certain hours for phone calls, but I do encourage Emails, they're much more convenient I think.

If I find myself stressing out over a particular student or two (actually...3 come to mind right now, lol) I just tell myself that "it is a phase" and it will pass. It always does smile
It is better to be kind than to be right.

Professional private piano teacher since 1994.

#1244983 - 08/06/09 07:16 PM Re: Clavier Companion article on stress and batteries [Re: Ebony and Ivory]
musiclady Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/19/05
Posts: 431
Loc: Toronto, Canada
For me, my escape is computer games, especially Civilization III and Civilization IV, also some Bejeweled and computer golf, bowling, and pool. I'm considering trying yoga too.

Clarinet and Piano Teacher based out of Toronto, Canada.Web: http://donmillsmusicstudio.weebly.com

#1245108 - 08/06/09 10:18 PM Re: Clavier Companion article on stress and batteries [Re: musiclady]
Karisofia Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/13/08
Posts: 201
Loc: Wisconsin
That article was quite convicting! I do have the habit of doing music much of the time. Sometimes practice is my best down-time because I don't get to do it when I'm busy with students.

Sometimes I try to go for a different subject--Spanish, writing, computers--but those are not always regenerating. This summer I landed a couple good reads about ancient artifacts, etc., that are a much better relief. The best so far was Decoding the Heavens by Jo Marchant.
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