Any musician will find about 1,000 different theories on how best to practice their instrument more than likely 500 of the theories will conflict with the other 500. Music pedagogy (that's a $25 work for instruction technique) is full of very expensive ideas as to how best to learn an instrument. The fact is, there are only two absolutely indispensable elements to learning an instrument REALLY well;
- A motivated student
- A relevant musical style
- A breadth of knowledge of music that may also inspire the pupil.
- A knowledge of the most efficient methods of learning techniques.
- The ability to chart a course to accomplishing the pupil's goals.
- Encouragement!!! I say again, ENCOURAGEMENT!!!
- The timbre of the note as it is being struck.
- What tool was used to initiate the tone (pick, fingernail, flesh, hammer on, a mixture)?
- Fretted or open string?
- Speed of the phrasing.
Spend a generous portion of your practice time listening to recordings that really excite you about your instrument. Consult your teacher as to additional recordings or artists that you can listen to who may be in a similar or complimentary style. This will vastly increase your tool box of techniques with which to make music that satisfies your soul!!