The first 2-3 years of playing guitar, I was constantly getting better (well of course the beginning is always the point at which improvements come fastest and most obvious). All I needed to know was how to read tabs, get my hands on a copy of guitar pro and dig in. At some point, I already considered myself an "advanced" guitarist, without even having ever received proper lessons (I haven't to this day). I could play some of my favourite Metallica and Iron Maiden songs sloppily, and I was in a few bands, one of which I actually had some fun gigs with (covered some Children of Bodom songs and made some own songs going in that direction, not nearly as technical of course).
That was when I was at the peak of my motivational and discipline level, because aside from the desire to become a great musician, which I do have by default, there also was the responsibility towards my band.
Anyway, all that is now years in the past, and since then my practice schedule has become almost non-existant at times. That's also because I tend to take interest in many things and don't ever fully focus on just one thing. Which can be a good and a bad thing. In the world of professionalism, where only specialization can get you anywhere, it's really not that helpful, but I am convinced that it's good for the developing of character, which I see as a life long obligation to oneself, to experience as many things you may like or dislike as possible.
So over the years, I have started countless times to again pick up my guitar, research practice routines, methods for technical improvement, even purchased some courses/PDFs with exercises and other forms of wisdom to help me get going again. It's not like all of that was completely in vain, certainly I would have rusted even more than I already have without these occasional spikes of commitment. But I seem to run against the same brick wall every time after a while. So I get out these practice routines, these exercises, an online metronome, do all the stuff "I'm told to do" for a while and then at some point it just slides away again. Might be days, might be weeks, might be months. Probably because I never got to employ any real routine. I just practiced what I felt like, when I felt like it. After all, that's what propelled me to my current level when I just started out, so I kinda became infested with that mindset. Yes, I've been practicing much, multiple hours per da at many times, but without any strategy. I fully realized that now, after coming back to this problem and doing some research on it again.
Today I remembered, that man years ago, I was in some guitar forum. It was hosted by some guy who made some cool video game music guitar covers on Youtube (Final Fantasy and the like). The people there were relly helpful and often had the right advice for me to overcome a certain obstacle. Also I remember that getting involved in that community kept me going with my exercises, even at times I didn't really feel like it. I had certain goals, and may it just have been showing off to some of those guys, it doesn't really matter.
So that's why I finally started looking for a similar experience again. There were multiple forums to choose from, and since this seems to be aout metal primarily, which will always be my #1 genre, I chose this one for now
Well #1 right next to vide game music. I think it's one of the most underrated genres, of course if you aren't a gamer that is. Also, many of those songs are reaaaally metal if you have them played on the right instruments (by the right people), so that's te ultimate win-win scenario for me
I once tried a cover myself for the SNES megaman x intro stage
As you can see, that was about 3 years ago, shortly after what I would call my "peak", and I haven't improved all that much since then. I was probably better at that time to be honest, which is not something I can be proud of, considering the sloppy nature of that cover. I am however still proud of that video, because I still put a lot of work into it and combined two of the things which I love. And of course it earned me tons of praise from friends. And that's another thing which is so very deceiving, praise from friends, and generally people who like you anyway. I have known these friends all my life and I know, their praise is true and honest. But that means so very little from a musicians point of view, because those people havn't played instruments. They don't compare me to "real" musicians. All my friends ever saw was "that guy can suddenly play guitar, wow". But as it is, I think praise got to my head and let me believe I had already accomplished so much.
I wouldn't write all this up If I didn't know otherwise by now
So that being said...