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7 Benefits of Taking Adult Music Lessons

Erica Anderson with adult student

We always hear about how important it is to put kids into music programs at a young age because they learn faster, and it enhances a variety of skills, but does it mean it’s not worth it to learn an instrument as an adult? If you’ve been thinking of every reason not to pick up that guitar, in this post, we’ll provide 7 reasons why you should and the benefits of taking music lessons as an adult


1. Enhance Your Cognitive Function

Much like your body, your brain needs to be exercised. Music activates many parts of the brain, which is key to strengthening your brain pathways and networks. The more you activate the brain, the stronger it gets, boosting memory, sharpening problem-solving skills, and improving concentration and overall brain function. When you haven’t practiced something in a long time, the pathways for that deteriorate, and the neurons will be used for something else. Because music activates almost all parts of the brain, it is great for strengthening overall brain function.

2. Reduce Stress

Taking the time to learn something new may seem stressful, but did you know learning an instrument can actually decrease your anxiety and depression? A study comparing a group undergoing piano training with a non-playing group indicated that individuals engaged in piano playing exhibited a reduction in psychological distress, depression, and fatigue. Playing an instrument allows you to make time for yourself and to escape from the outside world for a little bit. Now more than ever, we know how taking care of your mental health is just as important as taking care of your physical body, and practicing an instrument is a great way to get your daily dose of relief in.

3. Make Social Connections

As adults, it's already hard enough to make time for yourself, so making time to see your friends or making new connections is maybe non-existent. The great thing about group lessons? You get to make new connections, see them every week, and learn about something you’re all interested in together! It also means you’re surrounded by a group of people going through the same thing you are, so they understand what it’s like to pick up something new amidst everything else that goes on in life and can support you through it. As I mentioned above, music activates almost all parts of the brain. But did you know social activity is the only other activity besides music that can activate that many parts of the brain?

4. Build Confidence and Self-Esteem

Although it may seem like picking up an instrument is a long road, there are many wins along the way that build your confidence and sense of achievement. From having the support of an understanding mentor, to performance opportunities, there are many opportunities that learning to play an instrument presents for building up your self esteem.

5. Lifelong Learning and Growth

If you’re not growing, you’re staying in the same spot, and that can’t be helpful or healthy in any situation. Pushing ourselves outside our comfort zones is key to cultivating a growth mindset, and a growth mindset is applicable even outside of music. Learning keeps you fresh, it motivates you, and reminds you that you can do anything you want if you dedicate a little time to it.

6. Build Time Management Skills 

No one said learning an instrument was easy. You might be frustrated at first; you might even decide music lessons aren’t for you, but that moment is when you really test your self discipline. Your schedule is probably already hectic, and you can barely find time for yourself. Learning an instrument requires you to set some time aside to practice. Even if it’s just 10 minutes everyday, you have to hold yourself accountable and make the time. This routine you create for yourself of making time, showing up, and pushing yourself enhances your time management skills and self discipline. Those skills are traits you can apply outside of music, like work and your home life.

7. Personal Fulfillment and Joy

Why are you thinking about taking music lessons? Before you read any of the benefits above, you were already thinking about it. If it makes you feel something, if it’s something you’ve always wanted to do, there is no better time to pick up an instrument. Now you’re in charge of your happiness, and if learning an instrument is a part of that, why let that opportunity slip by? Maybe you’ve always wanted to learn an instrument, but someone told you had to focus on other things, or maybe you’ve been on the path you thought you wanted to be on, only to realize it isn't what you really want. Either way, you’ll never know if you don’t start.

From busy schedules to juggling multiple responsibilities, it's easy to see why you’d be hesitant to pick up something new, but a strong brain, decreased psychological distress, and an overall escape sound pretty good. Whether you’re thinking about picking up an instrument you took a break from, or starting from the beginning, there are benefits to music lessons that go beyond the practice room.

Take the First Step: Join Our Adult Open House

We understand you need flexibility. From private lessons to group lessons, morning lessons to evening lessons, The Music Institute of Chicago offers all the flexibility to tailor your experience. With flexible lesson packages, discounts, free masterclasses, and a community of like-minded adults, we are ready to support your journey in any way.

Want a taste of what it’s like to be an adult student at MIC? We invite you to our upcoming Adult Open House where you can explore our diverse range of music lessons, meet our experienced instructors, meet other adult students, and enjoy some drinks!

RSVP for our Adult Open House | Enroll in Our Adult Studies Program

If you are a current MIC student, bring a friend and take advantage of our referral program!