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Music as a Stress Reliever

Author: Jojo Varona

I love music, and ever since I was a kid, music has been one of my escapes and a fallback whenever I feel down, or whenever I want to energize myself. Music can affect the body in many health-promoting ways, and in these uncertain times, we need music in our lives more than ever.

One of the great benefits of music as a stress reliever, is that you can listen to music while conducting regular activities, as it really doesn’t take time away from a busy schedule. Music can provide a wonderful backdrop for your life, and you can find increased enjoyment from what you are doing while reducing stress from your day. While it may not cure coronavirus, your favorite music is often a cure for a bad mood. We all have our go-to’s, whether it’s some down-tempo, chill, meditative stuff for de-stressing, or more up-tempo, funky beats, even wild, to blow off steam.

Music therapists have offered suggestions, including creating custom playlists of songs that motivate you to start your morning or relax you at some point in the day; find times to shut out other distractions and listen deeply, taking in the lyrics; and sing along (when and where appropriate, hahaha).

Here are some of my music playlists suggestions:

My current favorite escape from the modern world is an 80’s playlist that I have on my old iPod (with the click wheel) filled with all genres of music – new wave, pop, goth, dance, r&b. It has Madonna, Prince, New Order, Depeche Mode, The Cure, Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam with Full Force, Blondie, Duran Duran, Bauhaus, Siouxsie and The Banshees, and so on. You get the picture. All 80’s, all the time.

My go-to music for cleaning house on a Saturday Morning is feel good music including Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, Earth Wind & Fire, and classic Motown. The kind of music that you know all the words to, and you can sing at the top of your lungs while you are vacuuming, so no one can hear you.

When I work out, or when I am on a hike, I like to put on uptempo dance music to keep me motivated There is dance music from the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s, 00’s to today; anywhere from Saturday Night Fever Soundtrack, Michael Jackson, Lady Gaga, Robyn, Roisin Murphy, Daft Punk, Outkast, The Pharcyde, The XX, Disclosure, The Chemical Brothers. I could go on and on.

In any case, your custom playlist should reflect your musical tastes. What music do you listen to when you want to calm down, when you want to be upbeat and happy, or for motivation and inspiration?

I would love to hear on what you have on your playlists.

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