Do you always listen to music in the car, and cannot you live without your Spotify account? Nothing wrong with that! In fact, listening to music is healthy. Several studies have been conducted in regards to the influence of music on your health, and the results are exciting. Music listening helps stimulate your creativity, reduces anxiety and stress in certain situations and can influence emotions.
How is it possible that music has so much influence on our lives? Neuropsychologist Erik Scherder explains in his lecture that music is a great enrichment for our brain. When we play music or listen to music, the communication between different parts of the brain increases. For example, people with autism can communicate better after listening to music, whereas people with speech problems have less trouble talking when they are exposed to music.
Also, when we sing together, your brain creates a substance known as the cuddle hormone. We become spontaneously happier and more connected to each other. No wonder then that there is such a nice atmosphere at festivals! Music can also help in stressful situations according to a research in the US. More than 2,000 participants were examined during 26 different experiments. The results show that listening to music just before surgery, can reduce stress and anxiety.
In other situations, too, music can help you feel completely calm again. Just before a major sporting match, you often see athletes walking around with headphones. In such situations, the type of music you play plays a major role. Heavy metal, for example, will not be very soothing for most people. But which music should you listen to?
If you need to concentrate well and be alert, you should listen to fast music. Cheerful, upbeat music makes you optimistic whereas slow music provides calmness and helps you relieve stress. Music with 60 beats per minute can make your brain synchronize with it. The alpha waves in your brain are then activated, resulting in more relaxation.
However, the number of beats per minute is not indicated when we play our playlist, so how do you choose your music? The most important thing here is that you must enjoy the music. When you listen to classical music for relaxation, but actually hate it, you won’t be able to reap any benefits from it. So, do not force yourself to play the ‘relaxing playlist’ on Spotify if you cannot listen to it with pleasure.