6 years plus. I even learn from classical guitar for sometime but quit. I learnt from pop guitar and finish their course.
I have written over 60 plus chinese songs... mostly chinese. How I rate my guitar playing... about 7.5 , but still got much to learn from the professionals.
I have not record my songs yet because I dont have good recorders that can record without interference. Recently I have bought the mp3 recorder and record, and I hope it works when I transfer the mp3 back to PC. I downloaded GOLDWAVE software and hope it can reduce noise filter to minimum. The problem also because I dont have USB card to support the USB port between the mp3 recorder and my PC to upload and download files to and from the computer.
After that then can try whether can record all the songs I write.
One thing you can try is to play your guitar clean, with no effects. Then try to pick a song you like with lots of guitar rhythm parts (I personally like the early disco stuff, Sat. Night Fever..haha) and play with the song. Listen especially to the drum beat, and try to play with the drum. Its important to listen critically to what you're playing, and target one thing at a time. Rhythm, playing the right strings, muting and the righ time, having a good funky feel, etc.
This is more realistic training than playing with a metronome as this is what you'll be working with when playing live or during recording, then you'll follow the click track instead of the drum.