Down? Listening to sad music as catharsis!
Some of you might disagree with this just like a lot of my friends. They are always trying to convince me not to watch a romantic comedy when I have a heartache, not to listen to sad songs when I feel down. However, to me that is THE solution when I feel low: giving in to the
sadness completely, connect with the feelings that I am told to repress. A sad song with a moving melody and lyrics that hit where it hurts is how you get all this out of your system! I have a good cry, I sing along and suddenly it is like I put down some of what was weighing on me. It never fails (at least for me) to chase the clouds stopping me from seeing the positive side of things. At least for a little bit. Long enough to consider making plans on how to feel better on a long term basis.
Nonetheless, after reading an article about how sad songs can make people who suffer from depression feel worse it got me thinking that maybe my friends are right, it isn’t always good to stay in a cocoon of melancholy depending on who you are and what your issue is. It is really interesting to me because even though I am not saying you should just drown into sad melodies, I really thought that somehow it was the same for everyone. First, you feel sad. Then, you put yourself in a sad comfort of songs and movies that convey how you feel. It makes you feel less alone and understood. Finally, later on, you start getting into phase two: dancing and singing to happy music! That is my simple and maybe unoriginal solution.
Dancing and singing for motivation!
I was going to write this whole post only from my perspective of things and then I found so many articles just saying the same thing I was thinking in a clearer manner and validated by studies and/or testimonies! Singing on top of your lungs and dancing to your favorite songs is just the best thing anyone can do in case of stress.
I agree that when you feel down it is hard to get into it straight away (again, at least for me). However, after the first part is done (see above) you can try putting some groovy music on and it just draws you in without you even noticing! It releases the stress, the anguish and fills your body up with dopamine which is a neurotransmitter that controls the reward and pleasure center of the brain. It helps you regulate emotions so YOU WANT IT! (Forget about the part where dopamine contributes to your sugar addiction haha).
DANCE ‘TILL YOU FEEL BETTER!
I let you check-out these two articles that talk about it a lot better than I do:
Making music: composing, writing, playing an instrument!
THIS! This is where I really wanted to get at! It is not about being a good musician, but about channeling all the negative energy and turn it into something positive, something nice. It is a challenge that is rewarding no matter what. You get the emotions out on paper, or while making loud noises with that new instrument you just picked up and/or you create a hit and become the new Adele!
The result doesn’t matter as much as the action itself. To me, it seems like it is a way to realize that sadness isn’t just there to make you feel like shit but has an energy that can be used to do things, to create, an energy to push you. Sadness has a creative energy. Actually, this is a thing that frustrates me sometimes because I feel like I can only be totally creative and active when I am feeling down, maybe it is just me but it appears that a lot of great songs that go through the years unforgotten and are considered as great achievement started out from an artist’s low point.
Use your downs to create new ups, for me it is writing songs
(I may not be good at it, but it makes me happy so I will not put that ukulele down haha), for you maybe it is painting, creating a business whatever really, just channel all these feelings and instead of letting them dragging you down use them to lift yourself up.
Music is beneficial in general!
I focused so much on sadness that I forgot to get it back to the point: Music is my answer to everything! I can’t focus? I listen to music! I have a boring course to learn by heart? I turn it into a song! I need motivation? I make myself an uplifting playlist! I feel like I am in a bad mood? I listen to that same playlist and so on.
Playing music is the activity that stimulates the most brain regions, so it can only be beneficial to make some and to listen to it. Amongst other things it improves memory and coordination.
Again, someone talked about it a lot better than I could so I refer you to that last article on how music can help improve your productivity: https://www.helpscout.net/blog/music-productivity/
I leave you to it! Bust a move with James!