Could Your Favorite Song Lower Your Anxiety?
It could be possible that musical tones and genres have an effect on our stress and anxiety levels.
It is quite common knowledge across all genres that music is created, performed, and listened to to invoke emotions in those involved. Listeners can tie emotions to an artist or a certain song because of the lyrical value, the background story of the performer, or the tone that the song presents. Often times, a listener will tie a memory to an artist or song, and consequently associate the same emotions from the memory with the song. Emotions due to music can be caused by several factors, but three stand out with bold letters compared to other possible variables.
Emotions triggered by a memory are due to the sentimental value of that memory. For example, the first date with a significant other there is a song that comes on the radio, and from there on out you associate that memory of the first date to that specific song that came on the radio. The reminder of the memory that the song brings to the surface is what brings back the same feelings and emotion that was felt at the time of the memory. Another example could be tying the first song you heard after a breakup, or a song you constantly listened to while painting your first home. The possibilities are endless, from first dates to a promotion to the first time leaving the country, music and memories often run hand in hand.
If a song/album is invoking emotion, aside from a sentimental memory attachment, it could possibly be due to an emotional tie to the artist. The memory paragraph is backed up by several scientific studies, but this idea is mere speculation as I've seen it in my own listening and I'm sure most can agree that it is prevalent. Artists all have their own stories, about how they got to where they are, where they came from, what they have done and why, and how it all has made them feel. Not all of these specifics are reflected in the music, and often times fans will do a bit more research into learning about their favorite artists and learning about their stories. I would argue that there is some kind of an emotional connection to an artist's music if there is some trait, characteristic, or experience that that artist has that the listener can relate to. The emotional connection is made to the artist, and therefore to the music of said artist. More often than not, it can help make the listener feel less alone, because they relate to the artist, and they can see the reflection in the music that they listen to, thus soothing anxiety levels and helping release calmer endorphins.
The last and most specific factor that I believe causes music to help calm us down is our favorite genre, or tone of music. The music on a person's playlist is a portrait of who they are behind the mask they show the world, and frequently people develop their own tastes and preferences which contain their favorite songs. Possibly without knowing, most people have a handful of songs that they listen to when they're in specific moods or feeling specific emotions. People turn to these songs when life throws something their way, good or bad, and whether they realize it or not, these songs have an effect on the emotions that they feel. Certain songs can hype you up before an athletic event, and certain songs can wind you down before bed, and certain songs can help you be productive, but most of all certain songs can calm you down before an anxiety attack befalls you.
Emotions and music have been and always will be intertwined, and if made aware of the applicability of the connection, people can use music to soothe their minds and escape a mental attack. It cannot be proven that certain genres calm the minds of all people because I'm sure that different genres affect different people, but music can and will invoke emotions in the listener and even the performer. I consider that to be the beauty of it all.
These are some songs that generally help me calm down:)