Music can lighten your mood when you’re sad, ease the pain when you’re hurt and make you happier, even when you’re already happy.
Listening to music also brings heart-warming nostalgic memories that can either bring a smile to your face or tears to your eyes. There is no question that listening to your favorite playlist can make you feel better.
Here are four facts backed by scientific studies that music can really lighten up your mood:
1. Music Can Alter Your Mood If You Let It
To better enlighten people about the benefits of music to their mood, Dr. Yuna Ferguson, Ph.D., headed a study along with other expert researchers at the University of Missouri, about how listening to music candynamically improve a person’s mood.
As the research suggests, the pursuit of happiness may seem like a selfish act; however, studies have found that it makes people more social, more successful, healthier and more apt to be in a satisfying relationship.
In the two studies conducted by Ferguson, the participants felt happier and had improved moods after listening to different kinds of music for two weeks.
In the first study, the participants successfully improved their moods after listening to upbeat music rather than a gloomy tune. However, some of the participants who simply listened to the music without trying to alter their mood stated they didn’t feel any happier.
Again, during the second study, participants who tried to alter their mood while listening to the music felt happier compare to those who just listened to the music with no efforts in changing their moods. Therefore, the effects of music on your mood are self-directed.
Ferguson said that, instead of focusing your mind on the amount of happiness you can get and constantly doing mental checks if you’re already feeling happy, you should focus more on enjoying the music as a vehicle for your journey towards happiness, rather than keep on thinking about the destination.
2. Music Can Speak To Your Brain
Need More Scientific Proof?
Did you know that many health experts use music as a therapy for patients with depression and anxiety? The rhythm and tone of a certain type of music can reach deep into different parts of the brain, and alter emotions and moods.
Listening to upbeat music when you’re feeling blue triggers the release of serotonin, also known as the “happy hormone.” It enhances your sense of well-being. It also prompts the release of dopamine and norepinephrine; substances that can make you feel good and ecstatic.
Going somewhere? It’s always great to take a copy of your favorite music anywhere you go.
3. Music Can Ease Negative Emotions
When you’re feeling down and helpless, listening to positive music can motivate you to stand up and get pushing again. Songs such as “I Will Survive,” by Gloria Gaynor, or “Stronger,” by Kelly Clarkson have an inspiring strong message and lively tunes that can will the listeners to be tough and give it another try.
After a stressful day at work, listening to music is a great way to relieve tension. Sit down, close your eyes, plug in your earphones and let the lyrics consume your attention.
Notice your breathing becomes relaxed and normal, the tensed muscles ease and your mind gets calmer. Listening to music after work and before dealing with the issues at home can prevent irritability and harsh reactions.
When you hate someone or when you’re hurt, listening to music can also soothe your emotions and the lyrics can send messages of understanding. When you just came from a breakup, listening to inspiring songs or love songs can bring wonderful and touching memories, which can ease the pain.
4. The Right kind Of Music Triggers The Right Kind Of Emotions
When choosing the best music to uplift your mood, your favorites always work the best. Whether it’s slow, soft, fast, and loud or rock, it’s sure to make you feel better.
A research conducted by experts from Penn State University suggests that regardless of the type of music the students listened to they all felt happy, positive, calm, relaxed, friendly and optimistic. Whether it’s a classical masterpiece by Beethoven or a loud banging rock ballad from today, listening to their favorite tunes definitely made the students feel better.
However, in another experimental study with two groups of participants, the results suggested that the type of music can bring out different emotions.
The first group who listened to lively, positive music felt happier afterwards. The second group listened to a somber tune and reported feeling sad afterwards.
Why? They said the sad music made them recall of their sad experiences. Next time, you might want to choose a tune slightly opposite to your mood if you want to change it.
Another thing, if you’re into non-stop loud and rock music, you might need to go slow and tune down a bit. Your heartbeat naturally quickens in pace as you listen to this type of music. While you may be enjoying every bit of it, your heart beat response is slowly sending anxiety messages to your brain.
If you are aiming for a therapeutic effect, you can choose tones created by expert pioneers in the field of music and mood. These experts create musical pieces aimed directly at your brain, which can alter your mood in the way you want. Did you know that they created binaural beats or tones playing differently in each ear? Yes, your brain catches up with the rhythm, then your mood slowly changes to the way you want it.
If you’re thinking of training yourself and your brain to respond positively to music, you should give your ears a break. When you have music on as a background the entire day, your brain can become accustomed to it, thus it will lose its therapeutic effect.
Music is a great form of entertainment. Lively music can turn a dull party into a great one. But, did you know that music can lighten your mood and make your day better, too?