Music is something many people enjoy listening to, creating or even playing. It’s all around us. Whether in a store, a restaurant, a car or elsewhere, music surrounds us everywhere we go. One thing not everyone may know is, music has incredible mental health benefits. It’s a powerful tool used to evoke motivation and focus, enhance memory, and even more, to manage stress. We’ll tell you how.
Stress and anxiety
There’s a very good chance you have experienced either of these emotions if not both at the same time. Stress is the body’s reaction to any demand placed on the brain or physical body. For instance, many feel stress when having to complete too many tasks, find a job or complete a test. Anxiety is a feeling of worry or unease, and can be a reaction to stress. The two emotions aren’t necessarily bad. In fact, they can be used as motivation to overcome certain challenges such as pushing yourself to study for your upcoming exam. But of course, too much stress and anxiety can put a negative strain on your daily life. If this is the case, it’s important to find a way to cope.
Impact of music on emotions
Music has the ability to trigger different emotions (this probably doesn’t come as much of a surprise to you). Many artists create songs based on personal experiences and emotions, and so you feel those same emotions when you listen to them. While some songs are upbeat and trigger feelings of excitement, others are slow and calm, causing feelings of sadness or relaxation. To add to that, you probably have certain songs that make you feel nostalgic or even angry. It’s evident the incredible power music has on impacting your mood.
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Ways to use music for stress relief
There are many different ways to cope with anxiety and use music for stress relief. To give you an idea, we’ve compiled a small list on the different ways you can incorporate music for stress relief into your daily routine.
♪ Create your own
If you’re musically inclined, why not create your own beat or write your own lyrics? If that isn’t your thing, but you know how to play an instrument, learn to play some of your favourite songs. It’s nice to get your mind off things and put your focus on only one thing. Playing or creating music is also soothing. Whichever way you choose to do it, this is one way you can use music for stress relief.
♪ While studying or working
It’s easy to get distracted by things around you whether you’re in a public space or in your bedroom. It’s also easy to let negative thoughts get the best of your when studying or working. By this I mean overthinking an assignment, upcoming test or ongoing tasks. Use music for stress relief by creating playlists of your favourite songs or even listening to music without lyrics. It will help you focus and reduce those negative feelings.
♪ Declutter your home
Cleaning the space around you, be it your desk, room or entire home, often helps cut down on stress. But it doesn’t take away from the fact cleaning is a chore requiring energy. When you come home from a long day, chances are you don’t want to do it. If you turn on some upbeat, energetic music in the background, your energies will in fact increase! Between cleaning and good music, you will reduce any feelings of stress.
♪ During your morning routine
When you wake up in the morning, all you really want to do is crawl back into bed. By incorporating music into your morning routine, you can set the mood for your day. You have full control and can choose to make it a low-stress day. Try something happy, like pop music, that makes you want to sing along. Or even something “smooth” like acoustic music or jazz to ensure you’re calm and working at a comfortable pace. Whatever you decide, this is a great way to use music for stress relief.
Need further guidance on how to reduce stress? Read this blog post for some quick tips.