I'm guessing that most of us have had an experience like this, a sudden development in your playing that brings it to a new level. Or maybe a few. I've only been playing for almost three years (and have been too cheap for lessons), so my example's pretty basic:

Sometime within the last year I noticed that I was actually pretty decent at alternate picking. That in itself isn't impressive, but what really surprised me was that I didn't remember ever intentionally practicing it. From that point on I started intentionally using alternate picking in riffs I'd previously just downpicked, as well as arpeggiating chords. They sounded a lot better, and my playing was much faster and smoother. Since then I've become more confident to challenge myself and I've become a much better player in the past few months than I had in the two years before that.

What about everyone else?
I just evolved yesterday i could do an a minor sweep perfectly from nothing so my confidence is pretty high atm
I'm still waiting for my first.

I would be ecstatic if strumming finally "clicked" for me. Then I'd be able to do something with all the chords I learned 10 years ago (just started trying to learn to play again).
I've been playing metal for years and always wanted to know how to do pinch harmonics and I finally realized that I've held my pick wrong for forever. It's so easy now! I just feel great about it...just thought I'd share...
my break through was realizing that i could play all the big arpeggios and stuff that are used for sweeping by doing weird string skipping tapping stuff. I found it completely impossible to sweep pick, but for some reason string skipping tapping with 2 fingers was easy.

also when i discovered how to play in key

I'm self taught, so i learned everything on my own.
Like punk the way it used to be? Deranged Youth Its like what Warped Tour should be!

Want to hear something mind-blowing? Pit O' Bodies Its like an amateur hypnotist plus the Spanish Inquisition!
my first breakthrough was being able to switch open chords by having all fingers go to their respective strings/frets at once. especially the F and G chords. man those killed me.

And just recently i realized that i was holding the pick in a way that greatly reduced my tremolo speed, and also that my left hand was not always perpendicular to the fretboard. I wondered why i couldnt do these certain sets of exercises from these DVDs i have, once i fixed those things, the exercises clicked. There probably are some more things with my posture that i need to fix so i'm paying extra close attention.
When I randomly picked up the guitar one day and sweeping felt comfortable and I could do it.
I used to think solos were impossible for me to do.

Now I can actually manage some of the easier ones.
I've been playing for six years...

And I'm still not that great...so no breakthrough yet.
Guitar: Ibanez RG321MH with EMG 85/60
Amp: Peavey 6505+ 1x12 combo
Musical styles: Progressive rock, thrash metal, post-hardcore.
Had a breakthrough when learning a Malmsteen song, think it was Blitzkrieg...yes his stuff is very technical, but that doesn't mean it's easy
Yesterday, I learnt Drifting by Andy McKee. It took so long, but I finally got all of it down.
My Last.fm
USA Fender Stratocaster | Roland Cube 60 | VOX ToneLab LE
Finally yesterday improvised and it actually sounded good and like i wanted it to, becasue before it just sounded like random notes lol
One day I was really bored so I looked up some Between the Buried and Me tabs and just sat there practicing them for like 8 hours straight with a metronome. I played every day for at least 5 hours for the next week and I improved SO much. I still usually play for around 3 hours a day and guitar has become so much more fun since then
I hate my sig
Joining a band improved my skills dramatically, because I suddenly had other people to inspire me to work harder at it
Andy Fox
Hard rock guitarist
I play a Jackson DK-2 and an Ibanez RG through a Peavey 6505+ stack
using dunlop jazz III picks improved my alternate picking in and instant, i can now alternate pick with any pick
Morris Les Paul copy
Jackson DKXT Dinky
Seagull Acoustic

Roland Cube 15
Line 6 spider IV 75
when I learned the stairway to heaven solo. I thought it was impossible, and nailing it gave me a confidence boost so I moved on to harder stuff (metal) which changed my musical tastes completely and now I'm working on sweep-tapping


I recently discovered that I was going to have to completely retrain myself to play with all 4 fingers. What a wall to break after 15 years, but last night I busted out a Pentatonic scale #1 at 180bpm or so after 30 minutes of 40BPM practice.
what a way to end the night. At the beginning of practice I was sliding finger 3 to the 4th position every time even though I was completely focusing on that (and keeping my right hand unanchored)

Unanchoring is going to be even harder than building up my pinky finger!
Everytime I learn something about theory (which for some reason is hard as hell to learn for me), when I learned chords I found I could play so much more stuff and now that I finally understood scales I'd be able to improvise and create a lot of good things.
My next barrier is sweeping and my damn pinky.