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Now that Amante Duo has played its last gig before the holidays, I had a chance to take the family to Cliff and Sally’s place to work on the guitar.

Holy crap. Cliff even let me do some light carving of the neck… Friggin' scary! While I tried to keep it together and stay focused as I use this extremely fine wood file from Asia on the back of the guitar neck, deep down I felt this overwhelming realization that this was really happening. All the sacrifice, man hours, effort and commitment Cliff has put into this guitar build really hit home. Here I was shaving fractions of millimeters at a time where Cliff built this whole thing by hand! What an amazing work of art. It is exceeding all expectations. The question is… can I do the same with the concert?

What else will I have to sacrifice to exceed the team’s expectations for the concert just like Cliff did. He’s doing his part and executing beyond expectations. My journey is a few months longer.

If there is one thing I’ve learned from this process, it’s that every week, every day is a new exercise in planning for when to find time to practice and cutting out the clutter in the horizon. General goals like “no more tv watching” doesn’t really help with the day to day simply because it isn’t specific enough. Just like you plan for time to do the dishes or eat during the day, same goes for this. It’s all about self-imposed deadlines and strict planning that you need to use to discipline yourself every day.

Plan the week, plan the day, plan the hour and stick to it as best as you can. Make the goals attainable so you can gain positive momentum and just stick with it.

I REALLY want to be mostly ready by the end of the month… I really want to be ready for the birth of my guitar.

-- Noel

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