From time to time, I enter what I call “music therapy.” It’s a time during which I have a song on repeat. It is invaluable during high anxiety or high stress. I would play the same song over and over and over again. For some reason, it helps me so much. It gives me time to think, reflect and come up with resolve or a plan to move forward. I would listen to many different songs by various artists. Sometimes I find “it” randomly, sometimes I know I want “it” from a particular artist. I know it when I find the perfect one. Because the search is so intense, I am attached to those particular tracks for years.
I thought this was special to me until my neighbor started playing the same song frequently. Unlike me, she’ll play two of them back to back. Rarely, she’ll add a couple more. For it to work for me, it must be the same song.
I have tried meditation in the past and I have been unsuccessful. Too many thoughts run through my mind at any given time. I have been unable to find that silence. Maybe I am doing something wrong. Instead of running away from my thoughts, music therapy allows me to embrace them, face them head on to classify, prioritize and compartmentalize them.
It’s one of the tools that helps me remain focused, reevaluate myself and others, detach myself from the present so I can see the big picture or look at things from a 3rd person point of view. I can see things better and I can make a plan.
It has taken years to be as effective as it is now. I always loved music as a child. I loved my piano lessons, I was interested in violin also. Fast forward to high school, I would play the same CD over and over. I used to collect CDs. In college, I started the one track repeat and realized its benefit to me.
I used to study in silence. I can focus and concentrate but I realized I spent half the time looking around. I never understood people who studied with headsets until I tried it. I started with Pandora to have song diversity. With the music, my attention is only on the task at hand: my book. From there, I moved the level up to my current music therapy. It allows me to set a pace since I know how long the song last. Before an exam, I would play a fast pace song to excite brain cells.
Right now, I play Monica “Still Standing” feat Ludacris. It’s a track about a dark period in her life, during which her boyfriend at the time committed suicide in her presence. This song entered my music therapy binder during the fall of last year. I found it randomly in my playlist. Recently I added Alicia Keys “Brand new me.” I chose her as the artist and from there found my song. I still love the piano so Alicia Keys, John Legend, Nora Jones and Jaime Foxx among many others are always on my “hits” list. Other strong voices on my list include Beyonce, Jennifer Hudson, Whitney Houston.
Before exams this year, I rock “Danza Kuduro” from Don Omar feat Lucenzo. I heard it at the end of The Fast and Furious 5. As someone who hopes to visit Brazil soon, I fell in love with it. Call me superstitious but I didn’t do as well as I have been when I didn’t listen to them in my last exam. I shall not miss again. lol…
All of us deal with stress differently. Music therapy is the best tool for me. Give it a try and let me know. It can be any music genre. Right now, I’m considering the purchase of the Dreamgirls soundtrack because the movie is among my favorites. Maybe I’ll find my next track in it. Follow me on Twitter. Like me on Facebook.
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