When I first started learning guitar, back in July, 2013, everything was going well until I encountered the G major chord in my first week of practice. I couldn’t play it. Not only could I not play it, but I couldn’t understand how I could possibly ever play it. It just seemed absolutely impossible. The GarageBand tutorial I was using at the time wanted me to play it in second position, which means that the index finger of my fretting hand was over the second fret:
I had a guitar with a steel-string neck (narrower than a classical neck) at the time. I persevered against my doubts to see if I could make any progress at all over the next days and weeks. I practiced the G major chord every single day.
A few weeks later, I was able to play it. I couldn’t play it well, but this was much better than not being able to play it at all.
By this time, I had enrolled in Introduction to Guitar, an excellent, free guitar course by Thaddeus Hogarth on Coursera. After a few weeks, he taught us the G major chord, but in first position, which meant that my pinky needed to cover the third fret on the first string.
I was still getting the hang of it in second position, but I definitely couldn’t play it in first position. At all. I’ve encountered a chord position I absolutely cannot play, I thought to myself. Finalmente.
Doubtful and conflicted, I reluctantly practiced the G major chord in first position every day, until, one day, I could play it.
I then bought a flamenco guitar. It had a classical neck. The chords were somewhat harder now, because the classical neck is wider than the steel-string neck.
After weeks, months, I was able to comfortably play the G major chord in both first and second positions.
Learning a musical instrument is like being very overweight and going to the gym and seeing all the fit people: you want to give up immediately because you’re so far from where you want to be. Only a few people persevere.
Now, when I pick up my guitar with the steel-string (narrower) neck, the G major chord is amazingly easy for me in both first and second positions.
I can hardly believe I ever thought it was impossible.
Postscript: I later discovered that my narrow-necked guitar is unplayable at the higher frets because the string height, or action, is too great. I realized this by trying out other guitars. I could play Spanish Romance on those guitars but not on mine. If you think your guitar is unplayable, you can take it to a guitar tech for a setup: optimization of action and intonation.