Reduce Stress with Music
When stress hits, there are several ways to manage the storm of emotional and physical feelings that arise. One remedy for stress that has endured since early civilization is music. For generations, culture has produced music not just for entertainment but for our well-being. If you’re feeling stressed this Monday, put on your headphones and tune out!
Research has shown that listening to music may have an effect on anxiety, blood pressure, and stress hormones. Certain kinds of music may reduce those symptoms, namely soft, classical music. A study conducted by Mindlab International put sensors on people trying to complete a stress-inducing puzzle. While they worked on the puzzles and increased their stress levels, different participants listened to different songs while the sensors recorded their bodies reaction to the music. Certain songs were shown to reduce stress-related symptoms; one song in particular showed a 65 percent reduction in anxiety and a 35 percent reduction in “physiological resting rates.”
That song, “Weightless” by Marconi Union, was specifically crafted to be a stress-relieving piece of music. The group worked with sound therapists to develop it and incorporate “carefully arranged harmonies, rhythms, and bass lines” that decrease a listener’s heart rate and cortisol level.
Even if your favorite bands don’t collaborate with sound therapists, using music to reduce stress can be as simple as building a playlist. You can probably find songs that reduce stress in your own music collection. Streaming music platforms may also have playlists that will help calm you down – Spotify has a playlist full of relaxing music. The best part: it’s portable! You can listen at work, home, or on a long commute.
When you begin a new week on Monday, have your stress-reducing music ready to calm you down. You can spend your week in a serene, soothing zone everywhere you go while listening to good tunes.