Music therapy is a great way to improve mood, reduce stress and help process trauma. The power of music can be truly transformative as it can evoke emotions, create connections among people and transport us to a different time and place. Science has even proven that music can actually change our brain. In this blog, we’ll explore the benefits of music therapy and how music has been such a profound part of N-ABLE Guide Kristina Rhoades’ life.
Read While You Listen
If you’re a Spotify user, check out this positive music playlist that Kristina created for the Naturally Able team — Made with love by DJ Hotwheels! Be sure to save it to your favorites as we keep adding to this special mix for our community.
Music is a Defining Part of the Human Experience
As far back as we can look into history, we see evidence of people using music for ceremony, celebration, entertainment and, simply, to enrich their lives. From traditional drumming around a campfire, to elaborate works from classical composers, to modern beats created on a computer, music can take many forms.
No matter your preference, though, it’s clear that music is somehow woven into the very fabric of what makes us human.
While people have been using music for various forms of healing, music therapy really became popular and more widely-used in the 1940’s, although the very first reference to it was in 1789. Then, it was used to treat psychiatric disorders and even alter dream states in psychotherapy. Learn more about the history of music therapy here.
Today, thanks to technology, music is easier to access than ever. No more lugging around a record player and albums or a boombox and huge binder full of CD’s. With just a few taps on our phones or tablets, we can pull up just about any music ever made available to the public.
My personal favorite, Spotify offers a free and premium version for music streaming. With the premium version, which is $9.99 per month, listeners can peruse Spotify’s extensive library of music, create custom playlists (with the option to listen offline), get weekly music suggestions and much more.
If you’re a fan of traditional, terrestrial radio, you’ll love iHeartRadio. Totally free, users can pull up live radio stations from across the country, as well as create custom stations. The downside is you can’t listen offline or explore specific artists or albums.
If you’re already an Amazon Prime member, you already have access to over 2 million songs with Prime Music. For an additional $7.99 per month ($9.99 for non-members), though, you can gain access to over 50 million songs, with the ability to make playlists and access other cool features. Learn more about Amazon Music.
While YouTube has its own music streaming service, a free and functional option is to simply pull up songs and videos on the traditional YouTube video streaming service. In fact, you may discover that some of your favorite artists have released awesome music videos that you may have never seen. You can make playlists or let YouTube pick the next video (or song) for you! Also – fun fact – if you’re a karaoke lover, you can pull up the “karaoke version” of millions of songs, with lyrics and all!
While this options costs $10.99 per month, it still reigns on top for satellite radio. This service offers a large variety of genre-based and artist-curated channels to satisfy any music lover. The great part about SiriusXM is that, if enabled in your vehicle, you can go on road trips just about anywhere without the fear of losing a station or needing WiFi. Streaming from your computer or device will still require a WiFi connection, however.
What Music Means in My Life
From my earliest memories, music has been my best friend. I’ve explored all the genres and styles and have room in my heart for just about all of it. As a teenager, and even still today, if I was dealing with any sort of complex emotion, I could always find a song that was relatable in that moment and it would help me cope. It would give me relief to know that another human had felt the same emotions or experienced the same situation and was able to put it into words.
With my life coaching clients, I often encourage people to utilize music therapy for healing of all kinds. I suggest making a list of songs that will always lift you up, that make you laugh, that help you process pain. When needed, turn to those songs as a tool to move into a better place.
I’ve managed a radio station, produced live music on the air, attended countless live shows and DJ’d many parties for all walks of life. Today, I help promote and organize live music in my awesome little town of Truth or Consequences, New Mexico.
I’ve even had the opportunity to be in several music videos by local artists with my family, like this one below from Moody Little Sister:
How has how music has made a difference in your life?
Drop a comment, or share your favorite playlist and music videos below!