Category Archives: Avoiding Burnout

Teaching With Depression (Part 2)

This is the story of my saddest teaching day ever.  But first, A Primer in Minnesota Behavior: (Warning: stereotypes ahead) Minnesotans don’t talk much about their feelings.  The question, “How are you doing?” will most likely prompt one of the following responses – normally with no elaboration: “Fine.” “Pretty good.” “Not too bad.” “Can’t complain.” … Continue reading Teaching With Depression (Part 2)

Teaching With Depression (Part 1)

I haven’t posted in a long time. The burnout I was facing at the beginning of the summer has lifted.  Unfortunately, the intermittent bouts of sadness and depression to which I’ve been prone for a couple years have taken its place.  So today I shift gears slightly, and puzzle out, how do I do this … Continue reading Teaching With Depression (Part 1)

Time to Slow the F*** Down and Take a Break

Slow the f*** down, already Shanta.  This is what my life has been telling me this summer. So I’m finally going to take a break. But before I do, I want to tell you the story of why, in hopes that you’ll give yourself permission to slow the *you-know-what* down too. May: My studio’s piano recital … Continue reading Time to Slow the F*** Down and Take a Break

When Students Quit

The summer student-quitting frenzy is coming.  I can feel it.  I had a student give her notice the other day.  This happens every year, no matter how hard I work at doing things to retain my students. My highest turnover time for students is always late spring and summer.  Now that it’s started, I’m on … Continue reading When Students Quit

How to Balance Performing and Teaching

Do you perform in your community? Or anywhere else, for that matter?  Do you ever feel like balancing what’s best for your performing career with your teaching studio is like walking a tightrope over the Grand Canyon?  In Stiletto heels? Performing is a great way to be visible in your community, and can even bring in … Continue reading How to Balance Performing and Teaching

How to Become a Better Music Teacher Every Year

So you want to know how to be become a better music teacher. How to keep it fresh and exciting. How to stay energized about your craft for years and years. Let’s take a few lessons from my years in the trenches of Human Resources: A good employer knows that they need to keep their … Continue reading How to Become a Better Music Teacher Every Year

To Rent or Not to Rent (Music Studio Space, that is)

Is it time to take the plunge and rent music studio space for your private teaching studio? Or is it time to move your rented teaching studio back into your living room? If you teach from home, you’ve probably thought about renting studio space. If you teach in a rented space, you’ve probably thought about … Continue reading To Rent or Not to Rent (Music Studio Space, that is)

Music Teacher Scheduling Software for Private Studios

Do you feel like you need scheduling software for your music teaching studio? If you’re teaching private lessons, there are some cool things you could do with the right scheduling tool. You might want to let students cancel and perhaps trade slots with another student for a week.  Or, if you offer a couple of first-come, … Continue reading Music Teacher Scheduling Software for Private Studios

Studio Management Tools for Independent Music Instructors

Yes, now I am going to talk about and compare Music Teacher’s Helper   and My Music Staff If you’re a MTH or MMS fan, I’m sorry.  I think these programs both try to be a “Jack of All Trades”—but the rest of the saying also applies: they are “Master of None”.  They do a … Continue reading Studio Management Tools for Independent Music Instructors

Insurance for Independent Music Instructors

As a natural born worry-wart, I am sometimes perversely interested in really boring topics.  But today’s riveting topic is essential even for non-worrier self-employed music instructors: …Drumroll… INSURANCE! [Trumpet fanfare] Why buy insurance? To protect you from the unexpected, like: Your studio gets burglarized or vandalized. Someone slips on the unshoveled walk outside your studio and … Continue reading Insurance for Independent Music Instructors