We couldn’t imagine our lives without music. It is part of every atom of our bodies and minds- from listening it in the elevator to conservatory playing, music makes our lives richer with every played tone. It plays a huge role in our upbringing, learning, emotions, creativity – pretty much everything important. There is something magical in expressing yourself through music, whether it’s singing, playing, composing, or just plain listening. Here are 6 ways in which music makes your life great and meaningful.
MUSIC CONNECTS PEOPLE
Not only is music a uniquely human experience, but it is also a communal experience. For generations upon generations, before iPods and TVs and even electricity, people gathered to make music together, to celebrate, to mourn, to commemorate, and to pray. Even nowadays, when enjoying a song, an artist or a band, it can become a hobby that leads to visiting concerts, talking and discussing music taste, favourite genres, etc.
Not to mention children who very much experience the world for the first time with the music. Kids like dancing, singing and pantomime, they repeat what they hear and see, and usually like to share it with others. Music develops children’s verbal and motor skills, it gives them confidence and energy to explore the world around them and share it with others. If a child is struggling with being too shy or adapting socially, learning to play an instrument or sing can be an efficient way of dealing with social anxiety, stress or isolation.
PLAYING AN INSTRUMENT CAN MAKE YOU SMARTER IN MANY WAYS
Yes, literally. Studies have found a correlation between early childhood music instruction and gray matter expansion. Compared to amateurs and non-musicians, musically instructed children were found to have more gray matter in the auditory, motor, and visual-spatial areas of the brain. The strengthening of certain areas of the brain through repeated use will lead to more gray matter.
The sooner you introduce your child to the beauty of music playing, the better. Parents play the most important role in musical education when it comes to expanding a child’s musical horizon. Resources like Music Groupies and similar websites are a great place for finding useful information on best instruments and music equipment needed for achieving a proper playing experience for your child.
Don’t be disappointed if you’re an adult – even when grown up, our brains can benefit from learning playing skills. It stimulates the brain, improving functions like memory and abstract reasoning skills, speech, spatial reasoning and literacy skills. Playing an instrument makes you use both sides of your brain, which strengthens memory power and concentration. Furthermore, exercising your hand-eye coordination and motor skills can improve focus and attention span (yes, even at an old age).
MUSIC COMPLEMENTS LOGIC
Although usually seen as complete opposites, music and math are two sides of the same coin. Reading and counting music actually requires an understanding of fractions, division and keeping rhythm and time in check. Regular music playing improves these skills and develops logical thinking. What’s more, it’s interesting that the same part of the brain is responsible for spatial skills, also required for understanding Math.
PLAYING AN INSTRUMENT TEACHES YOU PATIENCE AND DISCIPLINE
There is no more creative and engaging way of teaching patience, discipline and hard work than through music. Teaching children to play an instrument from the earliest age gives them insight into what persistence and devotion are really all about. Committing yourself to master an instrument, patiently and regularly practicing year after year, striving to achieve goals, both external and personal is what builds character and teaches valuable life lessons.
Music playing also gives a great sense of achievement and creates goal-oriented, single-minded and devoted individuals. Having a sense of direction in life and purpose builds confidence and positively changes self-image in the long run. Being a musician may help in overcoming stage fright, learning how to be in the spotlight and facing the fear of performing in front of strangers, friends and family.
MUSIC AS A WAY OF SELF-EXPRESSION
“When words leave off, music begins”, H. Heine once said. It is almost like a second language which we can use to express ourselves on far more exceptional levels than verbally. Some people find it more natural and easier to share their emotions and build their creativity through music production. Even in cognitive therapy music is used for treating depression, anxiety and helps in dealing with unsettling emotions and deeply-rooted problems.
Music has healing powers, it helps us reconnect with parts of ourselves that we’ve long forgotten and recall the child-like soul buried beneath adulthood. Have you ever experienced the chills and Goosebumps when listening to a long-forgotten tune from some other, happier times? It can take you back to the time when you first heard it and trigger the feelings of nostalgia and reminiscing.
IT JUST MAKES YOU HAPPIER
It’s simple as that – everything is easier with music. No wonder we choose to spend our most precious moments by enriching them with music. In fact, research has shown that listening to your favourite tunes triggers the release of dopamine, the feel-good hormone responsible for our mood regulation, happiness and stress control. Next time you feel under the weather, try enjoying your top music mix for a while. You’ll be surprised how effective it actually is.
Remember this – there are actually no downfalls to music. It always finds its way to your heart and touches your soul. Music engagement activates many different areas of the brain and therefore has countless positive effects on our development, learning, mental state and overall wellness. Live life through music and you will never be alone and bored – life will seem to go on without effort and pain.