Music has the power to lift you up. It can bring you to tears. It can make you get up and dance. It can relax the mind and body. Music has been around for centuries and exists in every culture around the world. You hear music just about everywhere you go: the supermarket; the gym; the doctor’s office; the mall; in the car; even singing in the shower (you know you do!).
Many people listen to music at the gym to
get them amped up for their workout. Or while cleaning the house to make it more “fun”. Music is an important part of relaxation and meditation. Some people listen to music while doing homework or to jump start their creative thinking. Some listen to music to help them sleep at night.
Did you know that Thomas Jefferson used music to help him write the Declaration of Independence? When he had writer’s block he would take to his violin and it would help him get the words flow smoothly from his brain to the paper. Playing the violin also helped Albert Einstein achieve the level of genius that he did. Music stimulates the brain and awakens the mind and senses.
Why is music such a big part of life? What is it about music that cause it to have the affects it does and why? Countless studies have been done in an effort to answer these questions.
According to several resources music has the ability to relieve pain, reduce blood pressure, affect your heart rate, speed up recovery from a stroke, and can boost your immunity.
Music therapy started after WW II when both amateur and professional musicians would play for recovery soldiers in Veteran’s hospitals across the US. Once the doctors and nurses noticed the patients’ physical and emotional responses to the music, hospitals began hiring the musicians to play. The music was helping these soldiers recover.
Studies have also shown that when you listen to “pleasant music” levels of serotonin are elevated. Serotonin is the neurotransmitter responsible for feeling “good” or “happy.” And listening to “unpleasant music” has the opposite affect and reduces serotonin levels.
The human heart also automatically tries to synchronize itself with the tempo of music. Which is why when you’re listening to fast heavy music your heart seems to speed up, because it actually is. And when you listen to slow, calming music, like meditation music, your heart rate slows, allowing you to calm your body and mind.
So, whenever you are feeling down, put on your favorite song, or favorite musician and allow the music to heal your mind and soul. Maybe through on something that will help you get off the couch and shake your booty. And if you’re feeling angered or revved up and need to unwind, listen to some soothing meditation music and let it wash over you, calming your senses.