Daily Fill 108: Drum Lesson: 8 Habits for Great Practice


Welcome to the Drum Lesson with our Lead Educator Scott Jackson! Every Monday Scott gives us a dose of knowledge, advice, insight, and more

Today’s quote: “It wasn’t that i couldn’t play it, but that i couldn’t think of it. Gavin Harrison

8 Habits for a GREAT Practice.

  1. Write Daily Goals: Make sure the daily goals equate to monthly, quarterly, and yearly goals.
  2. Write Musical Ideas Out: Whether it is a chart for a song, a fill, a groove, or I am creating my own musical idea, you need to write it out.
  3. Stick to the Routine: Don’t change your practice routine half way through your practice. You should know that ahead of time.
  4. Time Segments: Use a timer and set time limits to each thing you practice
  5. Record Yourself: This is a must do practice habit.
  6. Learn from Your Mistakes: Handle them. Fix it and move on
  7. Capitalize on You Successes: harness what worked best for you! Go 110 percent on whatever that is.
  8. Document Your Successes: You will not be able to harness the power of success if you do not document what worked.

Download a Printable Version Here

Why Are Habits Important?

First thing, two books everyone should read are THE TALENT CODE by Daniel Coyle and THE POWER OF HABIT by Charles Duhigg. These two books will open your mind up to the true potential your brain is capable of, so long as you know how to use it. Now, Habits… Habits are important because they truly impact are decisions either with food, hanging out with friends, and also WHAT WE PLAY IN A MUSICAL SETTING. Sorry for all caps, but this is true. Hence the Gavin Harrison quote. As drummers, we often knock ourselves down for “not being creative” when it is not that at all. It is in fact, that we have habits that come out without our knowledge that take control while we play music. If these habits did not come forth, well we would have to THINK about every single note we played, and I do mean every single note. Now, think about that.

Have you ever noticed yourself performing something effortlessly, but on the flip side while you practiced you had to think about each note? That is habit. That is your basal ganglia kickin in folks. It is a great and wondrous part of the brain, however; the basal ganglia does not discriminate between good or bad. Nor, does it between creative and old habits. Do you see where I am going with this? “It wasn’t that I couldn’t play it, but rather I could not think of it” It has nothing to do with creativity, but habits. As musicians, we have to understand that if our practice habits are bland, then when we play live the old habits will come back. Our brain wants to be able to “not think” as much so it can be aware to do other processes, but enlue of this it can be a downside too. This means our old fills, grooves, or ideas can easily creep into our playing even though we have spent months learning new fills, grooves, and concepts. Pretty crazy, right? Are you still with me? GOOD. This is where things get interesting. You have to CHANGE your old routine of practice, but still achieve them same reward for practicing. So, the above tips are just the start to changing a routine and making it great.

Here are some questions to ask yourself before you change anything.

Why do I practice?

What is the routine of my practice?

What is my reward for practicing?

What can I change in my routine to make it better?

Jot your answers down and save them for next week because we are taking this head on!

The Weekly Challenge:

Send a picture of you Documenting your successes while practicing for at least 5 days, and you will get a shout out from Drummers I Like on our Instagram Story. This will be a reoccurring challenge each week. Meaning you can enter at least once every week

Here’s How To Enter

  1. Take a picture of what you wrote down in a log/journal that was successful in your practice routine for 5 days with current dates between 11/6/2017 through 11/12/2017
  2. Explain why it helped you to keep a log/journal of your successes.
  3. Follow at @Drummersilike on instagram
  4. DM the picture and explanation to @drummersilike on Instagram or email it to scott@drummersilike.com

That is it! Really easy and we will give you shout out.


That’s it for today’s episode of the Daily Fill! Tune in next week for more instruction, knowledge, and more practical tips that can be applied to your Musical Journey

Go Practice!


ALSO!!! Big shout out to everyone that has recently joined the private Facebook group!


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If you missed any of last weeks episode you can catch a quick link to any of the episodes below

Scott’s Drum Lesson

Daily Motivation for Drummers with Richard

Morning fuel with J.C. Clifford

Drum Rants with Kevin

Last Friday’s Podcast

Drummers I Like Social Media links






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