2013 Wellness Challenge Week 38: Music
Most people are aghast when I tell them I prefer to sit in silence. Not just in meditation, but also throughout my day, on long drives, when no one’s home. So often I walk into someone’s house only to hear the TV with nobody watching. “It’s background noise,” they’ll say. I’ve never understood this, but for some people, music can be very relaxing.
I’ve known people to carry their iPod or iPhone around with them to play music wherever they go. I don’t like music all that much.
For me, I concentrate more easily in total silence. I enjoy thinking. But, sometimes I think too much.
The Downfall of Silence
Silence can be overpowering. We can get lost in silence just as much as we can get distracted by music. One of my good friends and an upcoming podcast guest, Kelly Newsome, of Higher Ground Yoga, always has faint instrumental music playing in the background when she’s at home. Not loud enough to be distracting but just loud enough to be there. A vibrational energy that breaks the stagnant silence.
So I thought I’d try it out.
Music has a magic ability to transform moods. It lifts us up, but it can also bring us down. For me, instrumental music is the best way to continue working while still disturbing the energetic waves in my environment without distracting.
At the same time, if I’m really tired and I’m driving, I’ll crank up some hip hop, rap or Lady Gaga to keep me awake and energized.
We can play music to our advantage in a quest for wellness and balance. Choose to play music that is fitting to the mood you want to be in. If you need to be upbeat or you need to get motivated, find some music that will help transport you there. If you’re really sad, avoid tuning in to the weepy tracks and opt instead for something that will help release some serotonin and get you moving.
As much as I don’t enjoy music and prefer silence, music can keep you company when you’re lonely and help you make it through tough times. To find a balance, make sure you have times of silence so that you can think deeply with zero distraction and times of joy, when music can transport you to different continents, cultures and memories.
In my opinion, the best relaxing music comes from the following artists. There are different styles and moods for sure, so check out each one on Pandora to see how you like the mood created by each artist.
- Desert Dwellers (a little more upbeat instrumental)
- DJ Drez (a hip hop influence on new age music)
- Ratatat (more modern dance music)
- Snatam Kaur (beautiful Sanskrit Kirtan chanting)
- Krishna Das (Sanskrit Kirtan Chanting)
- Peter Kater and Carlos Nakai (beautiful Native American-influenced instrumental)
- Gary Stroutsos (meditative instrumental for massage and healing)
Great Relaxing Pandora Station
Who are your favorite artists when you’re looking to relax? I’d love to explore more, so let me know over on the Facebook page!
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