Hey guys,

I picked up my first guitar 8 or 9 months ago and a Hal Leonard intro acoustic book per the sales guy's recommendation. After 2-3 weeks of playing through that book I started to lose interest until I stopped playing completely before the month was over.

A little more than a month ago I went through a 1/4 life crisis and asked my friends which of my hobbies I should dedicate my life to and guitarring won unanimously. I immediately ditched the Hal Leonard books and I've been playing 1-3 hours every day since.

The problem I'm having now is that I think I'm starting to plateau. I've got all the major and minor chords under my belt with a bunch of 5s, 7s, add9s, minors, sus2/4s and some diminisheds mixed in. I've also got all the major and minor scales.

My current skill or whatever that I've been working on is barre chords and I'm at the point now where I can almost smoothly transition to and from them. Where do I go after that?

I've asked a couple friends and they recommend arpeggios, hammer on/pull offs, sweep picking, bending and harmonics. I'm assuming I'll need to learn them all but I don't know which order. Any suggestions?


In which order should I learn: arpeggios, hammer on/pull offs, sweep picking, bending and harmonics

Last edited by Nitzer at Sep 28, 2010,
Bending and harmonics are fairly easy, as are hammer ons and pull offs. Arpeggios aren't all that tough, which leaves sweep picking.

If you can afford it, find an instructor to work with you one-on-one. Chances are, he'll find some mistakes that you're making and help you fix them. He'll also be able to challenge you and help you towards your goal.
How many full songs/tunes can you play now?Some with eyes closed?
You should be able to learn all of those techniques fairly quickly, though sweep picking may be the only one that takes a severe amount of time to get down.

As KG6 said, try looking in to getting an instructor. If you can find a good teacher, you'll be amazed at the difference it will make in the progress you're going to see. I went through a 3 year plateau, but when I joined up with another teacher (sort of acting as an assistant at first, and teaching beginning students) he started teaching me as a way of paying me. I learned more with him in just a few months than I had in a long time.
"Here I sit, beneath a lonely line."

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There aren't many songs I can play from start to finish yet. Some easier songs like A Whiter Shade of Pale, In The Aeroplane Over the Sea and Twist and Shout aren't too bad. I'm also working on songs that make me change in and out of barre chords like Movin Out and Hey Jude or some that are almost all barre chords like Santeria and Island In the Sun

I've sucked it up and I'm going to jam with some friends this weekend so that should be interesting. They're both avid guitarrers so I'll use them to hopefully correct any weird hand positioning or bad habits I have. Once I feel like I've stopped progressing I'll probably start looking into taking lessons