Self-care is an important practice that helps individuals maintain their physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Self-care can take many forms, including meditation, exercise, spending time in nature, and practicing mindfulness. However, one often overlooked method of self-care is using music.
Music has the ability to affect our emotions, moods, and overall mental state. It can be used as a tool to manage stress, anxiety, and depression, and can also promote relaxation and improve sleep. In this blog post, we will explore how music can be used for self-care and provide some tips on how to incorporate music into your self-care routine.
1. Choose the right type of music
When using music for self-care, it is important to choose the right type of music that suits your mood and needs. For example, if you are feeling stressed, you may want to listen to calming music such as classical, ambient, or instrumental music. On the other hand, if you need a boost of energy, you may want to listen to upbeat music with a faster tempo.
2. Create a playlist
Creating a playlist of your favorite songs can be a great way to incorporate music into your self-care routine. You can make different playlists for different moods and activities, such as a relaxing playlist for before bed, a workout playlist for exercising, or a motivational playlist for when you need a pick-me-up.
3. Listen mindfully
When listening to music for self-care, it is important to listen mindfully and focus on the music. Pay attention to the melody, lyrics, and how the music makes you feel. Try to let go of any distractions or thoughts and fully immerse yourself in the music.
4. Make music on your own
When you make music, you are fully engaged in the present moment. You are focused on the sound, the rhythm, and the melody. This type of mindful activity can help you quiet your mind and reduce anxiety and stress. Furthermore, when you make music, you are engaging in a creative and pleasurable activity that can release feel-good chemicals in the brain, such as dopamine and oxytocin.
5. Make music with others
Making music can also be a social activity. Playing in a band, singing in a choir, or just jamming with friends can provide a sense of community and connection with others. This can help combat feelings of isolation and loneliness, which can be detrimental to our mental health.
5. Use music as a form of meditation
Music can also be used as a form of meditation. You can sit or lie down in a quiet place, put on some calming music, and focus on your breathing and the music. This can help reduce stress and anxiety and promote relaxation.
6. Dance it out
Dancing to music can also be a great form of self-care. It can help release tension, improve mood, and increase energy. You don't have to be a professional dancer to dance to music, just move your body in a way that feels good to you.
In conclusion, music can be a powerful tool for self-care. By choosing the right type of music, creating a playlist, listening mindfully, using music as a form of meditation, and dancing it out, you can incorporate music into your self-care routine and improve your overall well-being. So, the next time you're feeling stressed or anxious, try turning on some calming music and see how it can help you feel better.
Georgia is a Registered Music Therapist and joined the Sounding Board team in 2021. A proficient vocalist and guitarist, she is passionate about facilitating personalized, empowering and collaborative music therapy experiences
Georgia has experience working in the community with disabled adults and children, in sub-acute adult neuro-rehabilitation, acute adult and paediatric hospitals, in pediatric oncology, and supporting adults with lived experiences of homelessness and people with complex mental health needs.