I bought my first guitar and chord book when I was 18, stuffed around for 10 years trying to play (admitting putting in about 100 hrs in total) and learn all chords in the book until they burgaled by home and stole my equipment. I gave up, and 10 years later tried again, with a different approach.
I have been at it for a year now, it is a difficult road now building speed and strenght specially after a couple of ops on my left arm and hand and now almost at 40, but this time I'm really putting in the efforts and hours. In 21 years, alot have changed, specially the amount of info you get today on the net. When I first started and not having money, the best info I had was my chord book with tons of chords. Today, if you have money to pay your internet connection, you are basically
A for away.
I must say, my whole approach changed a lot and it really helped me. What is important to me, is getting the basics right. What I have learned, there really is no use in just learning a bunch of chords or a bunch of songs. It is really important to know how chords are build and how they fit together and how they fit into songs, learn how to play alternatives, and learn your fretboard and scales. What I have done is take for instance the A major scale, and then map all those 7 notes (A, B, C#, D, E, F#, G#) out on a diagram of the entire fretboard (this helps later with embellishing chords), also the 5 notes of the pentatonic scale (helps with soloing and laying lead guitar), and then I separately took each chord (A, Bmin, C#min, D, E, F#min and G#dim) and mapped out the three notes that makes up the chord across the entire fretboard. This is great way to learn alternative voicings to a particular chord, you can also play around here with alternative fingerings to a specific chord and voicing to a chord, and have a great way to play any chord at any given position up and down the fretboard. There really are so much info on this on the net, so you should not have difficulty with this.
FEW IMPORTANT NOTES TO TAKE TO HEART
Learning to play guitar like your idol is not easy, it takes time and effort and pain, never give up. Becoming a good guitarist takes years. I've read that it takes at least 10 000 hours to be master in anything you learn, the road is long and rocky
NEVER EVER give up, no matter what. The best guitarist in the world did not get where they are today by giving up. In even they baddest day, they rocked on
There really is no short cuts in learning, and I do think that if there is shortcuts, they are usually the wrong way out.
One can never over-emphasize the importance of knowing the 8 open (cowboy) chords. They are the basis of almost each rock, pop and country song you will ever learn. Once you have them covered and you have build finger strength, you can move over to much harder chords like barre chords
Set aside time and force youself to have at least an hour practice time each day. I think this still remain the most important thing in learning anything in life. Nothing comes without practice
There is no real right or wrong way, the most important is that it sound good. At the very core, this is what music is all about
It really help a lot to learn the theory behind the practice