Words make you think a thought
Music makes you feel a feeling
A song makes you feel a thought
Music can affect us emotionally; our thoughts, feelings, moods. And this probably explains why many people turn to music as an antidote.
When you’re feeling down, you turn to some upbeat music or some beautiful but sad music to make yourself feel better. But, how can music create such experience? Psychologically speaking, the answer lies in your perceptions and how those perceptions are driven to by your brain’s expectations. When you listen to a rhythm, your pulse and respiration begin to get in sync with the with the beat of the music. A slow pulse signals your brain that something heavy, or sad is happening. A faster pulse signals excitement.
Researchers from the Univeristy of Missouri found that one can actually deliberately boost their mood just by listening to upbeat music. What’s interesting is that not only can music improves your mood, it can change the way you perceive yourself, a moment, or even the world. A study by researcher Jacob Jolif and student Maaike Meurs of the Psychology Department of the University of Groningen shows that music has a dramatic effect on perception: even if there is nothing to see, people sometimes still see happy faces when they are listening to happy music and sad faces when listening to sad music.
Music is the shorthand of emotion – Leo Tolstoy
There are also people who turn to music to express themselves – to express what they can’t put in words. They write lyrics, they produce songs – just to relay their feelings across.
“…sometimes you have something you need to say but you can’t because the words won’t come out or you got scared or you feel stupid. So, if you could write a song and sing it, then you could say what you need to say and it wouldn’t make a complete idiot out of yourself…” – Rory Gilmore, Gilmore Girls – Season 1 “Love, Daisies, and Troubadours”
I’ve never been the one to stick to only one genre (or language) of music. I listen to almost all genres out there, different languages (even if I don’t speak them), as long as it makes me feel something. And lately, I’ve been listening to Dimie Cat, a French singer-songwriter. Some of my favourites are La Voiture, Ping Pong, Everybody wants to be a cat…and the list goes on. Her jazzy vocal + electro swing music really brings up the mood.
So, what’s your all-time or current favorite go-to aka your therapy music?