Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The myth about beige cardigans

I am a musician. It makes sense for me to teach music, both financially and personally. Financially, I can earn almost twice as much per hour as I can doing most other things. Personally, it is good for me to be engaged with as much music as possible, and to "live" music. It is excellent to have to put my ideas about music into words, to find ways to explain musical concepts that I take for granted. And makes much more sense for me to earn my pennies doing something related to the career that I want to have.

So why have I been so reluctant to earn money by teaching? I realised the other day that I have a lot of resistance to the idea of being a "music teacher". Subconsciously I felt that music teachers are unattractive, lonely, boring people who wear beige cardigans (apologies to all music teachers for this terrible stereotype). I don't know why I had this image in my head, or where it came from. My music teachers have always been very vibrant and lovely people who would never go anywhere near beige!

Maybe I worry that I will become some kind of social outcast if I become a music teacher. Again, I don't know where all this baggage is coming from. Lots of very interesting, fascinating, friendly and sociable people teach in schools so what am I worried about? I'm not going to be some kind of gnome that hides in the music room and doesn't talk to anyone! And anyway, the purpose of working is to do just that - work. If friendships grow out of working relationships well so much the better, but that's not the purpose of working to earn a crust.

So I'm going to teach. I'm going to share the knowledge that I have gained in all the years of university and the life experience I have gained from, well, being alive. I want to inspire others and in turn open myself to inspiration and new inputs. I love music and it's time to share the love and blast any remotely beige ideas out the window!

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